Marriage Lessons from a Dog Trainer 

A few months ago, our young Australian Shepherd went to doggie boot camp. Over five weeks she was trained by professional dog-handlers to walk calmly, socialise nicely and keep her focus under the pressure of distractions.   Video footage taken by the trainers proved she was capable. What really remained was the question: can her owners be similarly trained?  When the time came to…

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Intentional Relationship

No matter how easy it is to fall in love, staying in love requires attention and effort. Most people drift into love, marriage and family without a whole lot of conscious planning about the kind of relationship they want to have five, 10 or 20 years down the track. Whether you are married, engaged or…

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Making a change for the better

Change is difficult. It can also be complicated. Despite our best intentions, sustained change often eludes us. We’ve had many spouses tell us that their husband or wife promised to change, and things were good for a while, but then there was a relapse. Their good intentions were not enough to sustain their energy for…

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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…

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Making marriage last is all in the Intention

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No matter how easy it may seem to fall in love, staying in love requires attention and effort. We all start out in marriage bright in hope and full of brimming love. Yet rarely do those wonderful, euphoric experiences of early love persist unabated; for many of us disillusionment creeps its way into our consciousness…

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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’…

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The Epic Battle in Every Marriage

If there is one thing that the seasons of Lent and Easter bring into focus, it’s the struggle between good and evil. At its heart, the Easter story is an epic tale of Perfect Love (Jesus Christ) facing down and conquering Evil. It’s not just an historic struggle – it goes on every day in…

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Five Ways to Build Trust

Today we had a meeting. Sigh… The dreaded meeting! Being a couple and working together is complex. We’re both strong-willed and passionate about what we do so it’s easy for us to slip into a mode where we single-mindedly pursue what we believe is the best course of action. It triggers us both for different…

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Gratitude: The Heart-beat of Love

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New research validates age-old wisdom: the simple habit of gratitude can transform a jaded marriage into a joyous encounter. By Marilyn Rodrigues A University of North Carolina study released last month highlighted the association of gratitude with a happy marriage. Cameron Gordon, the study’s lead author, said that the goodwill generated by grateful spouses creates…

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