Everyone can use some quiet time (mindful time)!

2021-05-12T11:21:24+00:00Perspective, Self-Care|

While writing this post, I was reminded of a conversation recently where a friend was telling us about how they sent their 9-year-old son to his room for a few hours for some “quiet time.”  Quiet time is the childhood version of being mindful.  He wasn’t in trouble or anything, but apparently, the little guy was having himself a field day as he frenetically ran around the house and seemingly got into everything imaginable. Kids — gotta love em! Anyway, mom and dad clearly needed a quiet moment to themselves, and so did their son. I bring this up because this family clearly has the right idea. One of the [...]

Which of the three journeys are you on in your marriage?

2021-05-02T20:18:37+00:00Personal Responsibility|

As we’ve learned over the last few blogs, personal change, growth, and taking care of ourselves mentally, physically, spiritually, and especially emotionally are what God wants for each of us on our journey. He wants that for us because all these things are good for us as individuals, help us be more Christ-like, and also set the foundation for having a safe and connected marriage. And all of us definitely want that, right? I was going over these elements on a Facebook Live recently. They blend perfectly with a concept that I learned from the National Institute of Marriage on the marriage journey. There are three distinct journeys that make [...]

How the best “me” still makes the best “us.”

2021-05-02T19:29:42+00:00Identity|

There’s this misconception among couples where one or both think they must give up their individuality (i.e. differentiation) to be together. Even if they don’t believe that to be true, they struggle with the idea that two beings becoming one can still remain two. “It’s not about me,” they think. “It’s about the relationship. How do I not lose myself and still be good to my partner and make the relationship good?” You can be you but still be y’all. In fact, being the best me makes the best us. Giving up your individuality to be together is as defeating in the long run as giving up your relationship to [...]

Your Successful Personal Change comes down to How You Think

2021-04-04T22:04:55+00:00Change, Success|

No one said creating successful personal change in our lives is easy. Even when we want to change personally, professionally, and in our relationships, fear often prevents us from acting. Peering into the future can even be daunting, making us even more resistant to change. But the good news is that we all have the capacity to grow and develop — and it comes down to how we think. As we learned in last week’s post, change is a process that takes a healthy combination of time, patience, and intentionality. So, rather than bite off too big of a chunk all at once, start slow, be methodical, and think in [...]

4 Steps To Embracing Change in Life and Marriage

2021-04-04T20:40:05+00:00Change|

Everything around us is constantly changing. And by the same token, we as humans are not meant to stop growing or progressing. Yet, we are incredibly — and often unapologetically — resistant to change.  We don't embrace change.  Whether it’s because we prefer to leave well enough alone, bristle at the idea of possibly losing control, remain afraid of the unknown, or internally compare it with walking off a cliff blindfolded, we don’t … like … change. And we’ve been that way for a very long time. You are guilty of it. Your spouse is guilty of denying change. Even Susan and I are guilty of occasionally not embracing change. [...]

Healthy Marriage Relationship starts with a Healthy YOU!

2021-04-04T19:18:58+00:00Emotion, Relationships, Uncategorized|

A healthy marriage starts with two healthy people. What we mean by that goes beyond eating right and exercising, though those are still two very important things. More importantly, it means thinking the right way about your marriage, learning to self-soothe, practicing good self-care, influencing your partner, and being emotionally, mentally, and spiritually healthy. We’ve touched on this over the previous four blogs, which on the surface were about improving relationships but really focused on how being the best YOU inevitably makes your relationship great. Your marriage can’t be healthy if only one of you subscribes to that mindset. As they say, it takes two! And If you’re both healthy [...]

How to Influence My Spouse and Understand Them

2021-04-04T16:55:43+00:00Communication, Conflict, Uncategorized|

Most marriage counselors will tell you that the best way to deal with and manage difficult conversations and differences between you and your spouse is to think in terms of being cooperative, seeking out understanding, and utilizing persuasion and influence. All of this is great — and true. But it’s also a bunch of “counselor talk.” What this really means is that you need to understand your partner’s point of view. Granted, that can be easier said than done — especially when you’re in the heat of the moment and both of you are thinking, “well, I’m right, and you are so horribly wrong.” But with the right attitude, finding [...]

Secrets to great couples communication: how to self-soothe

2021-03-22T23:59:50+00:00Communication, Self-Care|

Most people have heard the term self-soothing before, but very few of them actually know how to apply it to their lives. In fact, the majority of couples we work with — especially those with communication and conflict issues — simply don’t know how to calm themselves down when their stress levels are at their max and emotions are running rampant. Think about all the times this has happened to you. You’re in the middle of an argument with your spouse, and things are getting pretty heated. You’re both saying some pretty hurtful things when you literally lose it! You can’t think straight. Breathing is irregular and shallow. Palms are [...]

Self-care and knowing your deepest needs and beliefs

2021-03-03T23:31:28+00:00Self-Care|

As part of our ongoing conversation about good communication, we wanted to bring up self-care once again. You may remember Susan and me writing about self-care in August. And it’s just as important to talk about now because when couples find themselves arguing too much or not connecting quite like they used to, the odds are pretty high that one or both of them has stopped taking care of themselves. And it’s hurting their marriage. Self-care means eating healthy, exercising, being independent, etc. But on a deeper level, it involves taking control of your feelings, thoughts, and emotional well-being so that you not only love yourself but love others well [...]

6 Keys or Secrets to Great Couple Communication

2021-03-03T17:54:34+00:00Communication|

We’ve thrown a lot at you over the last few weeks and months about great couple communication. Specifically, what it should look like, how to talk through conflict when it inevitably happens, and, of course, how all of this fits into the bigger picture of having a safe and connected marriage. Say it with us one more time — positive communication is vital in marriage! It’s the only way we can truly get to know our spouse and truly respond to each other’s wants and needs.   “Two things can destroy any relationship: unrealistic expectations and poor communication.” — unknown author   Keys to Great Couple Communication Susan and I [...]

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