Tuesday, October 18, 2011


What is the single most important thing that I can learn from marital therapy? What's the key that will unlock the door to a happier marriage? Is there any one thing that I can do to reduce the stress and strain in my marriage? Are you ready for the answer?

It sounds incredibly simple but is,in fact, profound. Seriously profound

If you take away anything from my online marriage wisdom it would be the following. You can not control your spouse. Yup. You heard me correctly. That's it. You can not control your spouse. You can influence your spouse. You can express your preferences to your spouse. You can strongly express your preferences to your spouse but you can not control the outcome.

Most couples enter marriage therapy like this couple above - pointing the finger at the other guy. Couples begin therapy with the fantasy that the other spouse is the one that needs changing and they, the righteous spouse, which would be each of them, are going to get the other spouse, the offending spouse, which is always the other guy, to change. With my help of course.

When each person in the couple with the help of my cajoling learns that not only can they not change the other person, the only person they can change is themselves then marriage therapy is ready to begin. Instead of pointing the finger at their spouse, they learn to turn their finger around and point it at themselves - not in an accusatory kind of way, just focusing on what they can control which is to change themselves.

The process of learning that we, I am speaking globally now, not only cannot control the universe much less our spouses is a profound lesson that actually takes a lifetime to learn. It is something that we learn daily and over the course of a lifetime. When couples begin to get this concept and instead of pointing the finger at the other guy, turn it around and point it at themselves, that is the beginning of the transformation of a marriage and a huge paradox begins to take place. Stay tuned for tomorrow's post and I will talk about the paradox and how focusing on yourself just may help you get more of what you want. Go figure.

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