A great post from Leo Babauta of Zen Habits to start your week:
When it comes to how you view this world, if you’re like many people, you fall into one of two categories.
People who don’t believe they will ever get any of the goodness in life.
Or, people who hold onto hope that maybe someday, they will get some goodness, yet have no real clue how to make it happen.
Both of these groups live in fear that when something good does happen to them, it will only be a matter of time until the other shoe falls and it all goes away.
These views of self and the world are a direct result of a life paradigm developed early in life.
If your childhood needs were not met in a timely, judicious manner, you came to believe that the world wasn’t a predictable or abundant place. You probably saw the things you needed most (love, attention, affection, food, material things) as something in short supply.
These experiences created a view of the world called deprivation thinking. [Read more…]
I’ve been married to Pam for 23 years.
We’ve had our shares of ups and downs, but through it all, one thing remains very clear — when you can keep it simple, it allows the important to not get lost among the immediate.
If you boil down marriage and role it plays in life, it is personal development bootcamp.
Yes, it offers up happiness, pleasure, support and encouragement – but that’s not what it’s designed to do. At the end of the day, marriage is designed to help you grow up.
When you can see what happens in your relationship through that lens, everything changes.
In order to help you keep or create a minimalist marriage (where the important isn’t replaced with the immediate) here’s some thoughts I’ve learned thus far: [Read more…]
I have been married over half my life now.
Overall, these years have been good, if not great at times. There are other times however, when marriage has been anything but good. Sadly, many of these times where brought on by my own stupidity.
I’ve made many of the following mistakes throughout the course of my marriage. Thankfully I have a loving and forgiving wife.
As a rule, remember that everyone makes mistakes. Every marriage has arguments. Every marriage also has highs and lows.
The important thing is, how the ebb and flow of marriage is addressed.
We’ve written before about the marriage killers as well as the secret to a lasting marriage, but how the mistakes we make in marriage are addressed is key to improving your relationship. These repair attempts and bids for relationship are an important part of a fulfilling marriage for both partners. [Read more…]
Father’s Day is approaching up quickly – and what a great chance to surprise your husband, and offer him something he’ll love.
It’s a consumer world; we already buy most material possessions we want for ourselves and as gifts, but what if you gave the gift of an experience together?
By far, one of the most significant gifts you can give in this day and age is an experience you know your spouse will love. Something that impacts them in a different way.
Again, gifting experiences requires the same careful thinking and planning.
Is your husband really into gourmet cooking? How about a cooking class for a cuisine he hasn’t mastered yet?
Is he stressed and tired lately from work? What about a pampering session at a day spa (trust me, men love this as much as women do, they just generally don’t know it yet)?
Do they spend a lot of time at the driving range? How about an hour with a pro perfecting their swing?
But what about a gift you can give him as his wife, friend, lover? And a gift you can experience with him?
Here’s where the romance factor starts to skyrocket.
There is simply no substitute for spending time with your mate, and we already know that science has proven doing new things together as a couple is ridiculously good for your relationship. It floods your system with happy hormones that keep you bonded and happy.
For that reason, gifting an experience that the two of you can look forward to doing together is – in my opinion – king of all gift giving.
If you’ve been around Simple Marriage for a while you know I absolutely love Melt: Massage for Couples video courses – where you can get your hands all over your spouse in your own home night after night – it really is the gift that keeps on giving.
From now until Father’s Day (June 19th) my friends Denis and Emma Merkas are offering a great deal to Simple Marriage Readers.
They’re giving away the foot massage for free with each Melt purchase + they have a brand new payment plan of $22 per month for just 6 months and you get access to the Melt Video Series + Foot Rub Videos for life!
There’s a 60 day money back guarantee – because they want everyone to be absolutely in love with Melt. And if back rubs are just not their thing, they’re welcome to a full refund!
You can also use the printables as part of a Father’s Day gift this year – perhaps set up a hide-n-seek treasure hunt that’ll keep him guessing all day long. The more questions he asks, the more fun he has. Remember, it’s the mystery and anticipation that is the true hero!
One thing I repeated encounter as a marriage and family therapist is couples in emotional crisis. It’s common for my clients to come into sessions pretty worked up.
Often when this happens they try to use the first part of the session to vent their frustrations, hurt, sadness, disappointment and the like. While there is some therapeutic benefit to this process, I often don’t let it go on for long.
What I’ve noticed over the course of my years in the room with clients is an inability to recognize one’s own role in the very thing being vented about. Now, I can’t say this from a position of innocence, I do it too.
But one truth must be stated, no matter what your circumstances, situation, status or how disrespectful a spouse may treat you – this is not an excuse for poor behavior.
It seems that in our heads we can reach a point where our behaviors are awful, yet we don’t recognize it or more likely don’t care and maybe even feel justified because they did X to us or said Y when they know that makes us angry.
A marker of growing up in life and marriage is understanding I am always responsible for myself!
So please remember this …
Feeling disrespected is no excuse for despicable behavior. Being lonely is no excuse for acting out inappropriately online and offline. Feeling hurt by your spouse’s behaviors or words is no excuse to return the favor in kind.
In other words, feeling emotionally on edge is no excuse for poor behaviors.
As a rule of thumb, use this process:
- Work to self-soothe when your emotions rise.
- If you can’t control your emotions, control your behaviors.
- If you can’t control your behaviors, shut your mouth.
- Use breaks from each other effectively