Not All Happy Couples Have Had Happy Childhoods

Not All Happy Couples Have Had Happy Childhoods

Not only is it possible to have a great relationship even after growing up in difficult circumstances, but the pain of our past experience can actually become the motivation that drives our commitment to do the work that is necessary to create the kind of fulfillment that we were denied as a child.

For Better or Worse Until...

If you love each other you shouldn’t fight, things will consistently blissful forever, you never have to say you’re sorry… about anything, you’ll never be lonely again, and about a thousand other things that will turn out to be untrue. The word for these beliefs is “illusions”.

Don’t Use These Three Words

As long as we see our interaction as a breakdown between ourselves and our partner we will feel the need to “correct” the other person so that our anxiety will diminish or disappear. This will inevitably provoke the desire in the other person to react to our controlling efforts and before you know it, and we’re off and running

Don’t Believe Everything You Think

When a belief reaches the scale of myth, it is no longer merely personal and it possesses the power to influence the perceptions and views of a significant portion of the population. Myths may or may not contain some truth, but whether or not they do, when they are held as true, there is no longer any motivation to question them and they become accepted as “real".

You Can Take It With You But You Might Not Want To

Don't get lost in a quest for material success or approval and realize too late that the only thing that you can take with you in the end is regret that you didn’t live life differently.

No Holding Pattern

There are lots of reasons that people have for staying in bad relationships: children, money, fear of loneliness, and hope that things will somehow improve, for starters.

The Gifts of Giving

Reconciling our desire to hold on to what we want in the face of another’s desire to possess it (at least temporarily) for himself is a skill that even many grown adults have not yet mastered. Yet master it we must if we re to be able to avoid living with feelings of resentment, self-pity, deprivation, or shame.

Are You Just Fighting or Engaging in “Conscious Combat”?

It’s not just the exposure of our partner’s imperfections that we need patience to accept and live with, but it’s the exposure of our own imperfect aspects that get illuminated in reaction to them that leave us shame-faced and embarrassed.

Raise The Heat in Your Relationship This Summer

There is nothing that takes the passion out of a relationship faster than dishonesty and withheld resentments. The concealment of the truth or any deliberate misrepresentation almost always results in a diminishment of integrity in the relationship.

Overwhelmed Parents: A National Crisis

The young parents in contemporary America not only work longer hours than their parents did, but they work longer hours than do citizens of any other country in the world.

After the Honeymoon is Over

When did the honeymoon end in your relationship?

The Surprising Secret to Health and Longevity

The presence of supportive, nourishing relationships in our lives provides an antidote to the stress that we experience when we feel overwhelmed, isolated, unsupported, and disconnected from loved ones.

Emotional Intimacy

Deep intimacy requires a high level of transparency and openness. This involves a degree of vulnerability that can feel uncomfortable or anxiety-producing to many of us. These feelings do, however, tend to diminish and even dissolve over time and with practice.

10 Factors That Promote Intimacy

We often fear that which we most desire, and in the case of emotional intimacy this is all too often the case. Intimacy requires an unmasking of our public image and a disarming of the defenses that we normally utilize to protect ourselves from the vulnerability that exposes us to the possibility of pain, rejection or hurt feelings.

The Hidden Sources of Attraction

We are attracted to people for many different reasons, some of them conscious, some unconscious. Lying below the surface of our conscious awareness are subtle, less apparent factors that contribute to the degree of attractiveness we find in others. These factors relate to unspoken, even unknown wishes and desires for what we might be able to experience with this person.
Four Tips For Dealing With Marital Boredom

Four Tips For Dealing With Marital Boredom

Sometimes the very things that originally attracted us to our partner, those wonderful qualities of predictability or stability, or solidity or dependability or reliability they bring into our fragmented and tumultuous life in time become the source of our greatest irritation. What at one point in a relationship feels like security, at another feels oppressively boring.

When He (or She) Just Doesn’t Want to Talk About It

There is a big difference between on the one hand, being patient and tolerant, keeping our attention on ourselves, doing our own work, having realistic expectations, and being forgiving, and on the other hand, putting up with behaviors that are contemptuous and disrespectful and tolerating conditions that don’t support one’s self-respect and needs for emotional intimacy.

What We Really Fight About When We Fight About Money

Extreme financial stress can push a couple over the edge. It’s no wonder that the possible or actual loss of money can activate some of our deepest fears and prompt us to act defensively as well as offensively.When reactive patterns are neutralized through practice and mutual respect, couples can experience true financial intimacy.

Full Disclosure, It’s Not What You Think It Is

Full-disclosure is a willingness to reveal on an ongoing basis, what is arising in our field of thoughts, feelings, concerns, desires, needs, and whatever aspects of our ongoing experience that are relevant to our current relationship. What we are disclosing has at least as much to do with what is happening for us in our current experience, as it has done in the past.

The “I” Word

Integrity is the integration and alignment of your thoughts, feelings, words and actions. Integrity is walking the talk. Nobody gets away with nothing. The rewards of integrity are my judgments dissolve, my resentment melts, and I feel closer to and forgiving of the other person and often of myself as well. It's the ultimate win-win game.

Having a Conversation About Having a Conversation

Preparation is an often overlooked and neglected aspect of skillful communication. I wanted to communicate BEFORE initiating the actual conversation was that my intention was to enhance the quality of our relationship and NOT to criticize or blame. Often couples launch into a heated topic (money, sex, kids, in-laws, to name a few) before they have properly set the stage.

What's So Special about Fifty Shades of Gray?

The desire that so many of us have of being swept away from our mundane lives and into a world of passion and ecstasy. Research shows that large numbers of Americans believe that they are duds in bed. It’s likely that these books will inspire readers to be to be more experimental and creative with their own sexuality.

Breaking Free from the Myth of Independence

Healthy dependency is a part of every loving relationship.

Enlightened Self-Interest

The most successful couples don’t “give to get” in a co-dependent way, but rather give their care and support to each other from a well that is already full.

Ordinary People, Extraordinary Relationships

Outliers in the Realm of Relationship

The Direct Path to Self-Awareness

One of the underlying objectives of psychotherapy is to bring our shadow into conscious awareness so that we can come to terms with ourselves with greater self-acceptance.

Thinking About Getting Marriage Counseling?

There are few if any couples who have been together any amount of time who have managed to successfully avoid any of the many pitfalls that that are inherent in committed partnerships.

Downsizing Your Attachments to Preferences

When the real life situations of our relationships don't correspond to our cherished pictures, we may think that the relationship isn't working.