Knowing what to love

You can’t love what you don’t know. This saying has profoundly influenced our marriage and our faith. About once a decade we book tickets to the opera in the expectation of a romantic date night brimming with artistic delight. We have to confess though, we usually come home vaguely disappointed. Not being particularly musical, we…

Read More

#5 Thoughts Emotions Needs

We’ve already explored how to deepen our communication as a couple but focusing on sharing our interior life, specifically, sharing at the more intimate levels of Emotions and Needs. But how do emotions and needs relate to each other? And importantly, how do our thoughts impact our emotions? In this conversation we’re exploring these nuances…

Read More

The Power of Ritual

Routines can be very useful in keeping our lives purposeful and organized. Rituals are like routines with one important difference – they have positive emotional meaning. Rituals connect us with others by providing a focus or activity that enables us to interact together in an enjoyable and meaningful way. Almost anything can become a ritual…

Read More

The Auto-Pilot Marriage

Crammed schedules, kids to care for, a demanding boss, the ever-present television. No wonder our attentiveness to our couple relationship erodes over time, leaving us with less connection, less spark, and less intimacy. Without an active, intentional mindset, most contemporary marriages end up on ‘auto-pilot’. During courtship, our relationship is central in our awareness and…

Read More

The Art of Apology

Have you ever experienced the situation when someone has apologised but, while the words were said it lacked something, making it difficult for you to accept it? Sadly, most of us are not as good at apologising as we need to be. We think that it’s obvious, should just be instinctual, or that our love…

Read More

Deep Impact Conversations

“How was your day?” It’s one of the most common questions couples ask each other and either leads to a dead-end response like, “fine” or “busy” (which usually means “I don’t want to talk about it”), or a long-winded description of meetings, frustrations, errands and other ‘busy’ stuff. It’s what we call a ‘data transfer’…

Read More

Three Ways to a Resilient Marriage

We’ve been hearing from many of our SmartLoving leaders around the world looking for help in supporting couples under stress. There’s certainly lots of stress going around with pandemic induced changes and uncertainty. It got us reflecting on marital resilience – the ability of a relationship to endure and persevere through difficulties. There is quite…

Read More

Hear Me, Touch Me, Know Me

In relationships, the word ‘intimacy’ is often used as a euphemism for sex, but this is a very narrow and impoverished view. Some people have suggested that the meaning is better encapsulated through its sounds: “in-to-me-see” better captures the idea that intimacy involves the knowledge of the interior life of each other. In any relationship,…

Read More

Making the connection: It’s easy with these three tips

|

In times of challenge and stress, it’s especially important to make the connection with each other. Here we offer three tips to make it easier. We recently analysed the feedback from 400 participants in our online marriage preparation course. The results to the question, “On which of the following areas would you like more formation/education”,…

Read More

How to Forgive More Easily

We remember those long nights in the first year of our marriage. In the infancy of his career, Byron was often late home from work as he juggled the demands on his time. Initially, Francine was so grateful when he finally arrived that she didn’t register the hurt that his lateness caused. Over time and…

Read More