by Mira and Charles on March 25th, 2015
We’ve known for a long time that when a TV station calls to ask us to do a segment, you can never predict what that segment will be about. Sex in outer space? People marrying themselves? Who knows!?!
This time the segment was on, of all things, an app (well, these days we could have predicted that!) that enables single people to create an imaginary relationship that will give friends and family the impression that it’s a real relationship. No more telling mom to get off your back. This will get her off your back!
Well, some interesting issues actually came up during this segment. Please check it out: you might be surprised!
by Mira and Charles on March 20th, 2015
Couples always tell us that they want to be closer, more intimate.
“And what is intimacy for you?” we ask.
“Well…,” they say, “it’s…you know, being close.”
In other words, most of us want something very, very much but we can’t really say what this something is.
Here’s what intimacy is: it’s the answer to the question, Is it Read the rest of this entry. »
by Mira and Charles on March 14th, 2015
This has been a series about a completely avoidable tragedy: the way many women earn the label “nice” by giving themselves away, by doing too much for others and too little for themselves, with the result that they live drained of emotional energy and spend their days running on empty, with all the exhaustion and depression and bitterness that comes with living like this, if you can call it living.
Last time we talked about what we can do to stop the outflow of emotional energy. Today we wind things up by talking about what we can do to bring more emotional energy INTO our lives. To get the full story of what you can do to get more emotional energy, you really need to get your hands on our award-winning The Emotional Energy Factor. There you’ll find there are twenty-five different things you can do to add emotional energy to your life.
But this will get you started: Read the rest of this entry. »
by Mira and Charles on March 7th, 2015
One month and several blizzards ago—Boston here, dealing with the most snow anyone can remember and with only 2 more inches to go to break the record for the most snow in a winter EVER!—we wrote a blog about how so many women use themselves up and become emotionally exhausted by being too nice. We said that if you’re running on empty there are two things you can do: Stop giving so much of yourself away, and get more emotional nourishment. Less going out. More coming in.
Now is the time to show you how to do this.
Let’s start with the “less going out” part.
Our lives—all of our lives—are the story of what we say yes to and what we say no to. Every yes commits us to an expense of energy and the possibility of getting a return on that expense. At the same time, every yes puts us at risk of expending more energy than we get back. And if you keep on expending energy you don’t get back, you’ll soon be running on empty.
But here’s the thing that most people don’t realize. The forces of life Read the rest of this entry. »
by Mira and Charles on February 16th, 2015
Here in Boston, we have 7 feet of snow on the ground with more to come and we’re looking forward to a week of overnight temps getting down to zero or below. No temp above freezing on the horizon.
And it’s starting to get to people here. Everything is harder–driving is crazy and parking is impossible–and lots of things go wrong that you didn’t imagine could go wrong. For example, most people I know have melted ice leaking through their roofs, and there’s not much they can do about.
But let’s not feel sorry for ourselves. Everyone everywhere faces all kinds of challenges we often can’t imagine. They present a happy image on Facebook, but inside they’re too often struggling to keep their head above water.
So the need for emotional energy is as great now as ever. Which is exactly why Read the rest of this entry. »
by Mira and Charles on February 12th, 2015
This happens to us all the time. We read some piece of advice, like this one, and one of us turns to the others here at The Chestnut Hill Institute and says, “Hey, we’ve been saying this for years!” There are mixed feelings. We’re happy that good advice is out there. Frustrated that this advice has actually been available, because of us, for a long, long time.
In this case the advice says that a criticism is just a really bad way of making a request. So why don’t you just make the request? And since we’re talking about it, let’s flesh it out.
There you are, upset about something your partner did or did not do. Or didn’t do the “right” way. Or not when you wanted him to do it. So you Read the rest of this entry. »
by Mira and Charles on February 3rd, 2015
When I woke up this morning, a question from a reader was waiting for me:
How do I bring up going to marriage counseling when my husband is completely clueless about there being a problem? We’re not fighting or arguing, but we’ve drifted apart…. Dangerously apart. I don’t know how to start the conversation when he thinks everything is fine.
This issue comes up a lot. A LOT! But it took a reader’s question to make me think I should write about it. Thank you so much for the question.
Now suppose you just came out and said, “Honey, I’d like us to go into marriage counseling.”
He might just reply, “Really? Well…uh…sure. Let’s do it.”
And you’d fall off your chair.
So the question really is, Why might he say No? If you understand why your partner would be reluctant to go into marriage counseling, you’ll know how to bring it up.
There are five main reasons why people resist going into marriage counseling: Read the rest of this entry. »
by Mira and Charles on January 29th, 2015
How nice it is that the world is so full of so many nice women. Isn’t that nice? If only more people were nice, what a nice world it would be. Can’t we all just be nice?
But at the risk of being not nice I need to ask, what is this thing we call being nice?
This is important because—I’m here to tell you—a lot women, and men, and relationships too are dying inside from being nice.
If this were Read the rest of this entry. »
by Mira and Charles on January 23rd, 2015
If you’ve been thinking about giving up on the idea of marriage, or if you’ve been wondering about what kind of person you should marry, you could either consult your Aunt Agnes or turn to real solid research. Now I’ve got nothing against your Aunt Agnes, but if I have a choice I always go with the research. Better the experience of thousands of people, intelligently analyzed, than the experience of one woman who frankly…well, let’s just leave Aunt Agnes alone.
This research answers a couple of questions.
First, does being married actually make us happy or is it just that happy people are the ones who get married?
Answer: even when you Read the rest of this entry. »
by Mira and Charles on January 12th, 2015
We are all drowning in a sea of advice. Not just bad advice—which is bad enough—but advice of all kinds, and it’s causing lots of problems. This advice assault can, and WILL, wash over you no matter what you’re struggling with: from being stuck in traffic to having a dog with cancer, from losing your job to losing your hair, from breaking up with your lover to breaking out in pimples, from getting sick to getting old.
Here’s an example of how this plague of advice works. A woman I know is going through a very painful time. Her marriage has just blown up. Horrible! Family, friends, everyone at work, mere acquaintances know all about it, and seem determined to make things worse. The advice never stops. This woman has to walk a gauntlet of mostly well intentioned people saying a lot of things that are almost always more hurtful than helpful.
It begins with Read the rest of this entry. »