Relationships

RELATIONSHIPS: Love is not enough. Plenty of us have hurt those we loved and been hurt by those who loved us. Good intentions are not enough. Too often we intend to behave in a certain way, but find ourselves behaving differently. What it takes to create healthy relationships is a whole new model of relating, and that’s what we share and practice in our Live Conscious community.

Must Our Histories Cast a Shadow on Love?

Can love really be easy? Can relationships be easy? Or do our darker sides, our shadows, that are born out of neglect, abuse, or lack of nurturance early in life—result in us having to work hard to love and be loved? Do our early life emotional deficits—as well as...

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The Answer To ALL Relationship Issues

Is there such a thing as the answer to ALL relationship issues? Could relating with other people be straightforward and uncomplicated? And, with our partners, can love truly be easy? The answer to all these questions is yes. Before I tell you the secret formula, let...

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Make Love Easy

Do you struggle at times to love your partner? Many people do. Some, because they’re with the wrong partner. But for many of us it’s because we never learned how to make love easy. One reason is that very few people actually believe love can be easy. We hear so...

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Two Very Different Kinds of Romantic Love

What does it look like, feel like, sound like to have a healthy heart connection within your romantic love relationship? This question arose recently when I was working with a client. The man I was working with is very healthy, extremely bright, and very committed to...

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The Hole In My Heart

Do you have a hole in your heart? Have you had different romantic partners, but the basic dynamic between you remains the same? The dynamic, in short, is this—you don’t get what you want. Somehow you keep making the same mistake, either choosing the wrong person or...

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A Remarkable Woman — my mom

How old do you feel like you are? It was about a week ago when I asked my mother, “How old do you feel like you are?” She said, “Twenty-three.” And if I were to measure her by her spirit and enthusiasm for life I would agree. In physical years she is...

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Four Mistakes That Couples Make

I spend several hours every week watching smart people make terrible mistakes in how they treat their lovers/partners. What follows is a list of the four major mistakes I see couples make. If I do nothing more than commit myself to avoiding these four mistakes, I...

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New Year Resolutions

Happy New Year! Okay . . . a brand new year. If you read our articles you know that we think one of the most profound things in life is our ability to “redo” ourselves.   What’s a redo? A redo is a chance to exercise our free will, so as soon as...

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A New Kind of Conversation

A gift for you! We want to share with you three tools that can change the way you communicate, especially with people you love. These tools are more than tools; they help put you in a fundamentally different orientation—a different way of connecting with the people...

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How NOT to Apologize

“I sincerely, sincerely apologize, what can I say? I make mistakes.” The above quote is one of many by Toronto’s Mayor, Rob Ford. Even before he was elected mayor he was apologizing for his bad behavior, and since he’s become mayor it’s more frequent. Since May of...

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How to be a better man

Do you want to be a better man? Do you remember that line from the movie, As Good As It Gets—Jack Nicholson says to Helen Hunt—”You make me want to be a better man.” And she says, “That’s maybe the best compliment of my life.” In the past...

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Dating Relating Mating

A Map For Romantic Relationships Walk, run, rest. Hop, skip, jump. Birth, life, death. Everything has a rhythm—an order. This is true for romantic relationships but most people don’t know or pay attention to the order. It goes like this: Dating, Relating,...

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What Is Love?

What is love? Certainly “what is love?” is a nebulous question with probably as many answers as there are people. One definition that caught my attention recently was Victor Hugo’s quote, “To love another person is to see the face of God.” If we were to believe that...

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How To Let Go

What do you need to let go of? I work with a lot of couples in my therapy practice. They come to therapy because they are discontented—and brave. That’s why I enjoy this work. These couples that come to me are motivated to make changes in the ways they relate to...

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How To Love — another perspective

Learning To Love Better. How can we learn to love better? How do we make our intimate relationships feel like havens, be deeper and more meaningful? To a great degree, we can do this by learning to speak to each other in a different way. If we can truly begin to...

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How To Love

It can be easy I want to share with you part of a recent therapy session I conducted. The work I did is counter-intuitive in many ways. It connects to a previous article I wrote, Love or Fear. So much of therapy is based on minimizing people’s fears, and...

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Happier World

 Can You Redo Yourself? This morning while driving our grandson to school, his mother called him on his iPhone. (I don’t think 12-year-olds should have iPhones, but his father bought it for him and his parents are divorced—and well—you can imagine the rest.) At least...

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After the Honeymoon

Maintaining a loving relationship is an exciting new category for us to explore. In our recent retreats we’ve had more young people participating and we realize the remarkable opportunity that they have by learning these skills early in life. Learning how to...

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Apologizing

What if you thought of the act of apologizing— not as admitting that you were wrong—but as a mature choice that you get to make to reconnect with someone you love.         Just to be clear—I do know people who are chronically apologetic—that’s not...

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Why Don’t You Get What You Want?

Do you get what you want in your life? I’m not talking about material things; I’m talking about your primary relationships. Does your partner give you what you want? Are you treated the ways you want to be treated? Do you receive from your partner the things you most...

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How To Create Healthy Relationships

Do you think creating healthy relationships —romantic ones—is hard? Many people do. And you know what . . . all those people who think so have a hard time creating healthy relationships. It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. And if you expect it to be hard, when it...

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Why Do We Hold Back?

There are basically three reasons why we hold back . . . We judge something about ourselves as unacceptable so we don’t want others to see it. We believe another person will judge something about us as unacceptable. We withhold as a way to punish the person...

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How To Stop Being Defensive

There are two fundamental reasons why we get defensive. If we understand these reasons—with a little bit of effort—we can stop being defensive. Defending ourselves when we really don’t need to is one of the last vestiges of immaturity. #1—We defend ourselves...

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Good Love Making — how’s your sex life?

Do you have a healthy sex life? To answer that question you need to have a definition of “sexual health.” If your love making is great, maybe you don’t need to read any further, just go back to bed with your partner. But, if your love making and sex life aren’t...

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Respect Yourself

Respect yourself is the answer! What’s the question? Well, it comes in response to our most popular blog post: How To Find A Good Man. As a result of that post we’ve received several specific emails asking for more advice on how to find a good man. I...

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Happy Couples — Day 8 — Maya Tulum

We are at the end—the physical end—of this Live Conscious Retreat, in Maya Tulum. But I don’t think of this as an end, instead it is a beginning for the people who came together for the past eight days. As we learned to use a new set of communication tools and we...

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Learn How To Love in Three Steps

What could possibly be more important than learning how to love? Did anyone teach you how to love? Did anyone teach your parents how to love? Are you teaching your kids how to love?   If you want to teach your children how to love, teach them how to live their...

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How To Stop Arguing

I’m a Gunsmoke enthusiast. The TV show aired from 1955 to 1975, and provided mentoring in honesty, integrity, accountability, kindness, and grit. Those of us who grew up paying attention to Matt Dillon learned valuable lessons. Recently watching a rerun, I thought to...

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Why Do I Keep Choosing The Wrong Partner?

In my previous postings, “How to Find a Good Man” and “How to Find a Good Woman,” I emphasized that early in the dating stage you need to be rather intolerant. I’d like to say more about this. If you’re trying to find a good partner—male or female—one key is to apply...

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How To Find A Good Woman

In an earlier posting I wrote about how to find a good man. Most everything I said applies to finding a good woman, so please reference that post. However, here are a few more specific comments. By the way, there’s a lot more interest expressed by women trying to find...

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How To Find A Good Man

“How To Find A Good Man,” is a continuation from an earlier blog, “Why can’t I find a good man,” in which I suggest that many women attempt to force relationships to work with the wrong men. It’s as if these women try too hard. Ironically, if they are...

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How To Fall Back In Love

On eHow’s ‘tips from people like you’, Terri R writes an interesting article giving 6 useful instructions to consider in order for couples to fall back in love. Great stuff, but much of what is suggested can be easier said than done. I believe the...

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Don’t Try So Hard

I believe hard work often pays off. I also believe there are situations in which we should try less hard. When we try hard we tend to narrow our focus—followed by a cascade of physiological changes that begin with a release of adrenaline. When we try hard we create...

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How Eagles Mate

“Eagles are believed to mate for life, although biologists have observed that they stay mated only as long as they are a successful reproductive pair. Biologists think that the reproductive process between eagles is such a difficult process that many do not survive it...

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The Perfect Valentine’s Day Gift

I only realized it was Valentine’s Day when I turned on the television to watch the winter Olympics. I immediately turned to Hannah and said “Happy Valentine’s Day, I love you.” She replied in kind. She seemed equally surprised to discover it was...

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Marriage can be easy

I’m starting this first blog entry very close to the 27th anniversary of my first marriage—which lasted seven years. Although my first wife and I were good friends and we loved each other, we didn’t know how to be healthy and happy as a married couple. One purpose of...

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