Can God help my marriage?

So many couples collapse in the seat of despair feeling no hope for their marriage. Satan is the enemy of our souls and our relationships. His job is to bring darkness and despair. But in God there is no darkness at all. 1 John 1:5. God’s presence dispels the darkness in your marriage. God’s presence helps us in our time of need!Man and woman separated by door

I believe with all my heart God is with me. When couples step into my office or face me on their computer screen they are in the presence of God’s light shining through me. Over and over I have witnessed the transformative power of that light. I tend to see the worse cases. Couples come to see me who have already filed for divorce. I see couples ripped to pieces by affairs. I see couples swallowed up in drug and alcohol addiction. I see couples who have physically assaulted one another. I see couples who haven’t talked in months and couples who haven’t slept together in years. But they decide to give their marriage one more chance choosing to expose their darkness to another human being. But when you choose a counselor lit with the light of God’s love you are not just revealing your darkness to another human you are opening your marriage up to God. As we begin to talk and truth is revealed and acknowledged the wrinkles of despair once plastered on each face over time transforms into radiant smiles of satisfaction and contentment. That is only because the light of God has reentered the home.

If you are miserable in your marriage it is because Satan has been successful shielding your marriage from God’s light. I invite you to open the windows in your home and get Satan out. Allow God’s light to shine in your heart and you will receive help for your marriage.

No matter where you are located you can participate in one of my upcoming classes. My How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage course is transforming marriages. Yours can be next. Click here to learn more and get enrolled.


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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Christmas – A wonderful time for Forgiveness

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

Christmas is a wonderful time of the year.

All the decorations and festivities lift your spirit and bring a smile to your face. Watching children anticipate their gifts and enjoying family sitting around the dinner table, are all a part of this wonderful time of the year.

Christmas is a wonderful time for marriage and relationships. It’s a great time to say “I Love You!” There are many ways according to author Gary Chapman in his book The Five Love Languages to say I love you. Gifts would be the most expected way on Christmas. But a warm hug and passionate kiss would work well too. Taking time to do something special or just to talk and hang out may be just what is needed to communicate your love to each other. And nothing beats simply saying “I Love You!”. Take the opportunity you have today to say “I Love You!” Tomorrow isn’t promised.

Don’t be like those who get distracted by the rush, money spending and commercialism and decide to treat this day like any other. These folk are missing a great opportunity to spread love. Birthday’s and holidays are excuses to celebrate people and relationships. Step outside of yourself and give to someone else. Step outside of yourself and receive love from someone else. Don’t miss this day’s opportunity for loving.

Maybe there has been some tension in your marriage lately. You haven’t been getting along. You may be feeling frustrated with each other. Today is a great day to have mercy and show a little love. Experience the joy of forgiveness on this day that celebrates the birth of the one whose death on the cross gave us an opportunity for a second chance to do it right. Remember your loved one’s are fallible human beings just like yourself who need forgiveness just like you. Don’t expect them to never hurt or disappoint you. That is irrational. Forgive them and move on. Spread love not hate. Especially today.

Merry Christmas to you and your kin!


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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How to Stop Arguing: Get Help!

Would you like help to stop arguing and build a happy marriage? Register below to attend my next free training for couples on this topic.

family therapist in Alabama

Do you want to stop arguing with your spouse? Does your marriage need help? Attend my next “marriage communication training where I share the secrets to a lasting marriage. Click the button below to sign up.

Joe Follette, Jr. LMFT


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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How to Stop Arguing: Keep Your Filter Unclogged

We all have blind spots. There may be truths about ourselves that others see, but we don’t. It is really hard sometimes to hear the truth that our spouse is trying to communicate to us. Some people are more open to frank, candid conversations than others. Honesty is a key component of happy marriages. If we can honestly share our thoughts and feelings with each other, it is safe to talk, openly communicate and come to an agreement.

We all have the potential of getting stuck in irrational thinking. More than likely, when we act like our spouse is our enemy we are thinking irrationally. These irrational thoughts form the dirty filters that keep us from agreement. Communication is important in helping us talk through these erroneous beliefs that keep us away from agreement. Our dirty filters are often passed down from the previous generation. They are formed from life’s disappointments and difficulties. They represent our attempt to make sense of our experiences, but unfortunately, we don’t always arrive at the most helpful conclusion. Often we need psychoanalysis by a trained counselor to help us clean out these filters. It is no understatement to declare how damaging some filters can be to marital relationships.

family therapist in Alabama

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Do you want to stop arguing with your spouse? Does your marriage need help? Attend my next free training where I share the secrets to a lasting marriage. Click the button below to sign up.

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Joe Follette, Jr. LMFT


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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How to Stop Arguing: Learn How to De-escalate

Inevitably, something is going to get somebody fired up at some time. Your spouse will say something that gets under your skin. You may not respond in a positive way. Before you know it, you are having a yelling match or something similar. While these moments are to be expected, it is important for you to to recognize the escalation and diffuse it.

During high-anxiety moments in relationships, the fight-or-flight response has been triggered. God created us to protect ourselves when in danger. The adrenaline flow provides the added strength and alertness to handle crises. Unfortunately, 99 percent of the time when this response is triggered it is a false alarm. There is no imminent danger. However, you’re on alert as if there is. This alert signal unfortunately gets triggered during disagreements, misunderstandings, and disappointments. Instead of talking through the situation, couples become defensive and offensive. Instead of solving the problem, they basically inflame the problem, making it even worse. And worst of all, the problem that arose goes unresolved. Over the course of time, this pattern of unresolving problems leads to a very unhappy marriage and even divorce.

 

Couple Having Coffee

Here are some things you can do to keep those trigger moments from getting out of hand:

  1. Take a deep breath. Release the tension and tell your mind there is no danger.
  2. Lower your voice. Speak in a whisper if you must. If they feel safe and you feel safe place your hand on their shoulder in a caring manner to let them know you don’t see them as your enemy, and you care about them.
  3. Recognize when the fight-or-flight syndrome has been triggered. You know that the fight-or-flight response has been triggered when one of you becomes silent (withdraws, ignores, changes the subject, etc.) or violent (interrupting, yelling, denigrating, hitting, etc.). Being aware will help you keep the communication environment safe. Make the adjustment sooner rather than later.
  4. Show respect for the other’s opinion by 1) not quickly disregarding it, 2) not taking the floor and sharing your opinion, and 3) repeating back in your own words and clarifying what you heard your spouse say.
  5. Take a time-out for 10 minutes or less. Agree to give one another space for a short period of time when a time-out is requested. This will allow both of you time to calm down and think through the emotions you are feeling.
  6. Ask your spouse if they are feeling safe right now. Ask what you can do to help them feel more comfortable in order continue the conversation and find a resolution.
  7. Take a gratitude break. Take a moment to share something you genuinely appreciate about your spouse. Maybe this will help you feel safe again.
  8. If your spouse if really belligerent, you may need to gently call their name repeatedly until you get their attention. Then say, “I’m not feeling very safe right now, can we take a five minute time-out so we can calmly continue this conversation and create a ‘we-win’ outcome?”
family therapist in Alabama

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Do you want to stop arguing with your spouse? Does your marriage need help? Attend my next free training where I share the secrets to a lasting marriage. Click the button below to sign up.

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Joe Follette, Jr. LMFT


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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How to Stop Arguing: Commit to “We-Win” Negotiation

Everybody wants what they want. Being considerate of what others want is a characteristic some people lack. To build a happy marriage, both of you need to be attuned to the other’s wants, needs, and desires. You must be positioned to make adjustments and not just determine to to function like you’re still single. That’s the commitment you made at the altar. You must enter every conflict resolved to reach a mutually satisfying choice of options the two of you propose. This agreement should be reached respectfully while avoiding communication blockers. The environment should be so safe that you can share what you’re thinking without fear. It is difficult to stay cool when you feel strongly about something your spouse may disagree with, but maintaining respect for your spouse’s position — no matter how wrong you believe them to be — is essential to keeping them open to considering your perspective. And it is the only way to achieve a “we-win” conclusion. You may reach agreement, but if either of you feels disrespected, you run the risk of a lose.

family therapist in Alabama

Sign up for a free training!

Do you want to stop arguing with your spouse? Does your marriage need help? Attend my next “How to Stop Arguing & Build a Happy Marriage” webinar where I share the secrets to a lasting marriage. Click the button below to sign up.

Register Now

Joe Follette, Jr. LMFT


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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How to Stop Arguing: Learn to Communicate Effectively

Communication is the process of sending and receiving messages. Couples who master this process have the most enjoyable marriages. Couples who balance talking and listening well have great marriages. Couples who talk over one another, shut down, or say mean things are never fully satisfied with their relationship. Effective communication leads to a power balance that feels really good. Using the TILE method, we-win negotiation, the talking timer, the temperature test (-10 to + 10), and recognizing silence and violence will make your marriage easier to navigate.

family therapist in Alabama

Sign up for a free training!

Do you want to stop arguing with your spouse? Does your marriage need help? Attend my next “How to Stop Arguing & Build a Happy Marriage” webinar where I share the secrets to a lasting marriage. Click the button below to sign up.

Register Now

Joe Follette, Jr. LMFT


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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How to Stop Arguing: Recommit to Respecting and Loving Your Spouse

Two becoming one in marriage does not make one person responsible for the happiness of the other. Each of us is responsible for our own happiness. This is a damning mistake too many couples make: trying to make their spouse happy. There is no end to that pursuit. This is our personal responsibility.Your responsibility is to love your spouse. Loving them is mostly pleasing them, but sometimes it means saying “no.” Loving your spouse requires you to understand them and your relationship. When you understand your spouse, it is easier to respect them for who they are instead of trying to change them. To appreciate your spouse, you must understand their personality, strengths, and growth areas.

The five love languages (talk, touch, task, tokens, time) is a great way to conceptualize what you need to do to love your spouse. Failure to love one another is usually the underlying reason for arguments. A secret cure for arguing couples is to spend more time together.

family therapist in Alabama

Sign up for a free training!

Do you want to stop arguing with your spouse? Does your marriage need help? Attend my next “How to Stop Arguing & Build a Happy Marriage” webinar where I share the secrets to a lasting marriage. Click the button below to sign up.

Register Now
Joe Follette, Jr. LMFT


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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How to Stop Arguing: Take Responsibility for Yourself and Your Emotions

You are an individual! After getting married, many forget that they are still individuals. You must not lose your identity in marriage. You are still responsible for yourself, and your spouse is responsible for himself or herself. Being true to yourself means understanding and appreciating who you are — your personality, strengths, weaknesses, and styles. Understanding yourself will help you make better decisions and enjoy better relationships. You will be better able to discern what to say “yes” to and when to say “no.”

Where do you feel anxiety in your body? Which of your behaviors are unhappy about? Are you aware of your thoughts that drive those behaviors? Do you know how to change those thoughts to produce better behaviors? Many times we blame others for how we feel and act. But no one has the power to make you feel or behave any particular way. Taking responsibility for your feelings and actions is the only way you can make the changes you desire in your marriage.

family therapist in Alabama

Sign up for a free training!

Do you want to stop arguing with your spouse? Does your marriage need help? Attend my next “How to Stop Arguing & Build a Happy Marriage” webinar where I share the secrets to a lasting marriage. Click the button below to sign up.

Register Now
Joe Follette, Jr. LMFT


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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How to Stop Arguing: Establish a Baseline

One of the most frequent occurrences I experience is couples terminating treatment before they completely reach their goal. So often, I see couples begin to feel better since they’ve gotten through their crisis or the most painful period in their relationship — but then they begin to believe that that’s good enough. While in reality they haven’t reached their goals or built the skills they need to maintain their relationship progress. Many couples find their way back to me after more damage has occurred. I recommend that couples establish a baseline marker for where they currently are in their relationship that points to where they want to be. At any time during the process of change, couples can check in to see how they are progressing toward building a happy marriage. Take the test now to see how you are doing in your marriage and establish your baseline.

Take a Quiz to Establish a Baseline

Marriage Assessment

The marriage assessment is an effective way to check in and see how you are doing as a couple. Your first time taking it will provide you a baseline to check your growth when you take the test again in the future. Answer questions based on how you feel currently in this marriage not on the past or what you are hoping for in the future.

Hot or Not Marriage Quiz

Marriage can be difficult. So many get married never expecting challenges. The problem is that marriage contains two imperfect people who often have some deep issues. These issues throw cold water on your hot flame.

Take this short quiz to see how hot your marriage is.

Marriage Quiz

family therapist in Alabama

Do you want to stop arguing with your spouse? Does your marriage need help? Attend my next “How to Stop Arguing & Build a Happy Marriage” webinar where I share the secrets to a lasting marriage. Click the button below to sign up.

Register Now
Joe Follette, Jr. LMFT


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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How to Stop Arguing: Be Positioned for Change

Change is wonderful. But to successfully change you must be positioned for change. To be positioned for change means you are motivated, educated, available, prepared, and supported.

 

Motivation – You must have a significant reason grounded in deep emotion to complete the change process. You must have a “Why?” that is compelling and captivating. Without an emotional reason to change, challenges and obstacles will easily discourage your attempts to change.

Education – Making the changes you desire requires following the path others have taken to be successful. This requires research and often help from others who can show you the way. You have to choose a path for change that feels right for you.

Available – You can want to change, but you are going to need resources to change. Whether that resource is time or money, you must give your change whatever it requires. Suppose you want to lose 20 pounds, and your plan requires preparing your lunch from home each day. You must have the time to make these lunches and the financial resources to purchase the needed foods for your lunches. If you are too busy or don’t have the money, you will not lose weight on your selected plan.

Preparation – To make changes, you must be prepared to make the sacrifices necessary. You can’t change if you are not prepared for the cravings to return to your old way, your old friends, places, and things. You won’t be able to change if you stop working on the plan you’re using.

Support – To make changes, you need support. You need a source or sources of encouragement, instruction, accountability, etc. No man is an island. We need others just like they need us.  

You can enjoy a happy and peaceful marriage no matter what bad stuff has happened. You just have to stop complaining about your problems and get busy engaging in the change process. If you believe you are positioned for change move on to the next step.

family therapist in Alabama

Do you want to stop arguing with your spouse? Does your marriage need help? Attend my next “How to Stop Arguing & Build a Happy Marriage” webinar where I share the secrets to a lasting marriage. Click the button below to sign up.

Register Now

Joe Follette, Jr. LMFT


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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How to Stop Arguing: Decide to Change

You are tired of feeling disgusted, disappointed, and disconnected with so much arguing in your marriage. You have begun looking for answers to solve your problem and renew your marriage. Then you stumbled upon my site and are now considering what I can do for you. Once you begin working with me, you will start to change unproductive behaviors, and your marriage will begin to feel better. At some point you will forget all of your progress and return to the old unproductive behaviors. Then you will have to work doubly hard to get back on the path of the good behaviors. Finally, you will either give up on changing altogether or achieve mastery of the desired behaviors. However, with that mastery comes the potential of returning to the old behaviors. This places you in a state of continually maintaining your mastery. This describes the process of change. It has been reported that it takes fifty-five days to establish a new habit. So if you want your change your marriage, I challenge you to dedicate the next few months to achieving that change.

My goal for all my clients is achieving what we call in family systems theory, the second order change. This is occurs when you truly have no desire for the old behaviors. Your mind is free from the old ways, and there is no need for maintenance. If you desire to change your marriage, then I encourage you to take the next couple of months to focus on improving your marriage. Continue this training by going to the next screen.

family therapist in Alabama

Do you want to stop arguing with your spouse? Does your marriage need help? Attend my next “How to Stop Arguing & Build a Happy Marriage” webinar where I share the secrets to a lasting marriage. Click the button below to sign up.

Register Now

Joe Follette, Jr. LMFT


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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Top 10 Christian Marriage Retreats

Onе of the bеѕt things a married Chrіѕtіаn соuрlе саn dо for thеіr rеlаtіоnѕhір іѕ to аttеnd Christian marriage retreats. Whether you аrе nеwlуwеdѕ or hаvе bееn mаrrіеd fоr dесаdеѕ, mаrrіаgе еxреrtѕ believe thаt intentionally spending tіmе оn your mаrrіаgе is оnе of the best ways to kеер it ѕtrоng.

Top 10 Chrіѕtіаn Mаrrіаgе Rеtrеаtѕ

Why attend Christian marriage retreats?

Christian marriage retreats рrоvіdе a рlасе fоr couples to еxреrіеnсе renewal and healing. You will learn about cоmmunісаtіоn skills, anger management, depression, and rеѕоlutіоn оf pain. And you’ll lеаrn to undеrѕtаnd оnе аnоthеr during a Christian marriage retreat.

When you attend Christian marriage retreats you are able to see how other couples interact and learn from them as well. It’s easy to get caught up in your own story, but there are valuable stories all around us that we can learn from. Other couples have been through what you have been through. Their success story might be just what you need to strengthen your own marriage.

The top 10 Christian marriage retreats

Thеrе are ѕеvеrаl Christian mаrrіаgе retreats, so hеrе’s our lіѕt оf the ten bеѕt Christian marriage retreats.

Top 10 Chrіѕtіаn Mаrrіаgе Rеtrеаtѕ

1. Sizzling Hot Marriage Retreats

Lifestyle Therapy Coaching, run by licensed marriage and family therapist Joseph Follette Jr. is a certified psychological health establishment located in Huntsville, AL. Their weekend Christian marriage retreats can help you find the spark you’ve been missing out on in your marriage. Their programs include marriage counseling and courses to get couples fall back in love, alongside therapy sessions for the whole family. They also have medical nutrition therapy and an effective drug rehabilitation program.

Top 10 Chrіѕtіаn Mаrrіаgе Rеtrеаtѕ

2. WіnShаре Marriage Rеtrеаtѕ

WіnShаре Marriage іѕ lосаtеd іn northwest Gеоrgіа’ѕ Appalachian fооthіllѕ. Their Christian marriage retreats are dеѕіgnеd to gіvе уоu a holistic experience that wіll brіng уоu аnd уоur spouse сlоѕеr tоgеthеr. You’ll experience аdvеnturе, lеаrnіng, аnd thе simple соmfоrt оf еnjоуіng оnе another. WinShape Marriage іѕ ѕurrоundеd bу forests and streams аnd іѕ рrоtесtеd аѕ раrt of a 26,000-асrе wіldlіfе preserve on thе mоuntаіn саmрuѕ of Bеrrу Cоllеgе. Thе mаrrіаgе ѕеrіеѕ оf rеtrеаtѕ offer a variety оf well-known ѕреаkеrѕ аnd counselors.

Top 10 Chrіѕtіаn Mаrrіаgе Rеtrеаtѕ

3. Mаrrіаgе Bооt Cаmр

Marriage Bооt Cаmр іѕ a fоur-day rеtrеаt оrgаnіzеd tо help соuрlеs recommit to thеіr rеlаtіоnѕhір. These Christian marriage retreats wеlсоmе couples frоm all faiths, bеlіеfѕ, аnd bасkgrоundѕ. Marriage Bооt Cаmр рrоgrаmѕ іnсludе a соmbіnаtіоn оf mеntаl games, drіllѕ, competitions, skits, аnd еxреrіеntіаl events tо deepen thе rеlаtіоnѕhір. They also соmbіnе all thе best tеасhіngѕ frоm the field of marriage cоunѕеlіng so that lives of the аttеndееѕ саn bе trаnѕfоrmеd.

Top 10 Chrіѕtіаn Mаrrіаgе Rеtrеаtѕ

4. Aѕѕеmblіеѕ оf Gоd Mаrrіаgе Enсоuntеr

Marriage Enсоuntеr іѕ a wееkеnd rеtrеаt fоr соuрlеѕ whо want tо tаkе thеіr marriage frоm gооd tо great. These 3-day Christian marriage retreats last from Frіdау еvеnіng tо Sundау еvеnіng. Thе rеtrеаts are lеd by trained couples whо hоnеd соmmunісаtіоn tесhnіquеѕ. They’ll give tаlkѕ іnѕріrеd by their personal еxреrіеnсеѕ on dіѕсuѕѕіоnѕ about mоnеу, family, changing ѕеаѕоnѕ of life, ѕеx, and God. The Mаrrіаgе Enсоuntеr рrоmіѕе is this: Nо circle time or ѕіngіng kumbауа, no embarrassing ѕkіtѕ оr role-playing іn frоnt оf the group, оnlу one іntrоduсtіоn at thе beginning оf thе weekend, рlеntу of оnе-оn-оnе tіmе tо ѕhаrе wіth your ѕроuѕе, no nееd to ѕhаrе with аnуоnе else.

Top 10 Chrіѕtіаn Mаrrіаgе Rеtrеаtѕ

5. Cеlеbrаtе Yоur Mаrrіаgе Conferences

Cеlеbrаtе Yоur Mаrrіаgе Cоnfеrеnсеѕ іѕ thе fifth on оur lіѕt оf top ten best Christian marriage retreats. It іѕ designed tо bе an іnсrеdіblе twо-dау rеtrеаt juѕt fоr you аnd your ѕроuѕе. The rеtrеаt is hоѕtеd bу Jау and Laura Lаffооn. Thе Lаffооnѕ use ѕtоrіеѕ, interviews, rеѕеаrсh, and уеаrѕ оf experience. They еquір соuрlеѕ with the tооlѕ thеу need to nurturе оnе аnоthеr, cоmbіnіng humоr, muѕіс, and lots оf hоnеѕtу.

Top 10 Chrіѕtіаn Mаrrіаgе Rеtrеаtѕ

6. Mаrrіаgе Rеѕсuе Aѕѕосіаtеѕ

Itѕ рrіmаrу сlіеnt bаѕе іѕ реорlе whо have separated, have fіlеd fоr dіvоrсе оr hаvе аlrеаdу divorced but аrе rесоnѕіdеrіng. Rеtrеаtѕ range from three tо fіvе dауѕ, аnd they еnсоurаgе thеіr clients to come expecting miracles.

Top 10 Chrіѕtіаn Mаrrіаgе Rеtrеаtѕ

7. Rеtrоuvаіllе Marriage Rеtrеаtѕ

The gоаl of the Retrouvaille Christian marriage retreats is tо hеlр соuрlеѕ rediscover thіngѕ that made thеm fall іn lоvе in the first place. People аttеndіng thе рrоgrаm саn еxресt to ѕреnd thеіr time fосuѕіng оn effective, encouraging, and positive соmmunісаtіоn.

The Rеtrоuvаіllе rеtrеаt іѕ unіquе іn thаt іt іѕ a rеtrеаt ѕеrіеѕ. Yоu аttеnd fоr an іntеnѕіvе wееkеnd, аnd thеn thеrе аrе follow-uр ѕеѕѕіоnѕ оn a regular basis thrоughоut the nеxt several months. Thіѕ company ѕауѕ thаt іt’ѕ bеѕt for соuрlеѕ whо are considering dіvоrсе оr ѕераrаtіоn. Thеу аrе Cаthоlіс-bаѕеd іn their рhіlоѕорhу, wіth ministers рrоvіdіng ѕоmе of the services. But they wеlсоmе people frоm аll Christian trаdіtіоnѕ. Cоѕtѕ vаrу depending оn whеrе уоu attend, and уоu are asked tо make a donation to соvеr еxреnѕеѕ.

Top 10 Chrіѕtіаn Mаrrіаgе Rеtrеаtѕ

8. The Smаllеу Institute Rеіgnіtе Mаrrіаgе Intensive

Smаllеу Inѕtіtutе’ѕ оnе-оn-оnе рrоgrаm hаs been еndоrѕеd bу nоtаblе Chrіѕtіаn relationship authоr, Jіmmу Evаnѕ. It has рrоvеn tо bе effective for many соuрlеѕ around thе соuntrу.  Thе аррrоасh іѕ tо rесоnnесt соuрlеѕ and rеdіѕсоvеr whаt оnсе brоught two together.

Top 10 Chrіѕtіаn Mаrrіаgе Rеtrеаtѕ

9. Fan the Flаmе Intеnѕіvеѕ

Fаn thе Flame Intеnѕіvеѕ іѕ more thаn just a Christian marriage retreat for a wееkеnd. This program includes іntіmаtе, реrѕоnаlіzеd соасhіng sessions designed tо help уоu identify аnd address уоur ѕресіfіс needs. Intensives аrе mоrе роwеrful thаn one-hоur соunѕеlіng ѕеѕѕіоnѕ bесаuѕе thеу kеер you both focused оn уоur іѕѕuеѕ fоr аn еxtеndеd period. Yоu wіll rесеіvе оvеr 25 hоurѕ оf personalized counseling, соасhіng, and mаrrіаgе building еxеrсіѕеѕ. This рrоgrаm аlѕо іnсludеѕ a 15-wееk fоllоw-up program and mоnthlу live vіdео сhаt fоllоw-uрѕ. Intеnѕіvеѕ аrе lіmіtеd to thrее mаrrіеd couples per weekend.

10. Wееkеnd tо Remember

These Christian marriage retreats start оn Frіdау evenings and runѕ thrоugh Sunday afternoons, and соnѕіѕt of teaching, wоrѕhір muѕіс, and often comedians interspersed to kеер thіngѕ fun аnd uрbеаt.

Wееkеnd tо Rеmеmbеr аttеndееѕ consistently give the соnfеrеnсе hіgh ratings, with 96 percent ѕауіng іt improved thе hеаlth оf thеіr mаrrіаgе аnd 97 реrсеnt saying іt еxсееdеd thеіr expectations. Fаmіlу Lіfе produces multiple resources focused оn building strong fаmіlу rеlаtіоnѕhірѕ. Thе fоrmаt оf thе соnfеrеnсе provides fоr орроrtunіtіеѕ fоr the соuрlе tо share with one another, learn time-tested tооlѕ, аnd lіѕtеn tо rеаl-wоrld stories from presenters.


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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Cell Phone Addiction: Health Effects

Whenever my nephew needs to figure something out, he pulls out his cell phone. He can get from problem to solution in a matter of seconds. As impressive as that would seem for a ten-year-old, I was doing that without a smartphone at the same age — not to brag. Sadly, it seems that thinking has become something you do only when you don’t have the internet close by. That thought leads us to ask, is cell phone addiction becoming normal and almost expected?

Just like any addiction, cell phone addiction can have negative consequences on your life and on those around you. It can affect your emotional, intellectual, and physical health.

Cell Phone Addiction: Health Effects

Here are some ways cell phone addiction can negatively affect you and your family and some tips to fight the addiction:

Cell Phone Addiction: Changing the Learning Process

Our cell phone addiction has turned the learning process on its head. Now, instead of memorizing concepts, we just look them up. Math study apps give us our answers on demand during homework. But back in the day, we memorized the sin and cosine tables. We had to work out a solution. The test was never about if I knew whereto find the answers.

If you notice your cell phone is keeping you from learning, try putting your phone in another room while you work on a project. Sure, you can’t quickly look something up, but it will force you to think something through. You might be surprised by how much you know.

Cell Phone Addiction: Health Effects

Cell Phone Addiction: Shortening Attention Spans

Even when we should be concentrating at work or in a class, we get distracted by our cell phone addiction. We are constantly getting notifications for text messages, games, weather apps, and news apps, and these notification make sure we are always looking at a small screen for a large chunk of the day. Imagine how much of what actually happens around us we miss because of this attention-fuelled gadget.

Enjoying time with family even gets overtaken with our cell phone addiction. Instead of enjoying time together playing a board game, that time has been diverted to staying up to date with social media platforms and reaching new high scores on games. We all know we’ve been to a dinner where we all end up on our smartphones. And there’s always that one person watching football or basketball on their phone giving a play-by-play, and sometimes they’re typing their play-by-play on Twitter and Facebook at the same time. Now if that isn’t a cell phone addiction, I don’t know what is.

At work, having a smartphone next to your laptop keeps the fear of missing out alive, so sometimes you pick it up, right? But if we had to count the number of working hours lost because of cell phone addiction, my bet is it amounts to millions every year.

If you notice your cell phone is getting in the way of your work or family time, try a cell phone cleanse. That means you’ll decide on a set few times each day when you can check your phone for calls or messages, but other than that, your phone is turned off. Try this for a week and watch your ability to get things done improve. A therapist can help you through your addiction and help you track your progress.

Cell Phone Addiction: Health Effects

Cell Phone Addiction: Changing Communication

My niece responds to verbal communication with smiley faces. I would love to have a full conversation with her, but she’s not always so responsive. A side effect of our cell phone addiction is that we’ve stopped talking like we used to. First, we wrote letters, and then we could write emails. They were meaningful and took time to craft. Even instant messenger was a better form of communication because people would sit down and dedicate time to a conversation. But unfortunately, that’s not always the case with texting and cell phone addiction nowadays.

I’ve always been a face to face person and a message that comes from someone standing right in front of me or a message that’s physically passed across a room by being can hold more weight (both literally and figuratively) than a message sent via text. With over 3 billion text messages sent on a daily basis through WhatsApp, many people look to be losing their desire to open their mouths to say something.

If you want to improve your communication skills, try writing a letter or email every once in a while. If you can’t live without texting, try to make your text conversations more meaningful. There’s no reason why we can’t incorporate good communication into a text message.

Cell Phone Addiction: Health Effects

Cell Phone Addiction: Affecting Physical Health

Kids nowadays seem to be looking for something less demanding to spend their time on. You give them the choice between playing a soccer video game on a phone and real soccer, and they want to sit inside and play the cell phone version. But I remember closing off sections of the street and turning that into our stadium. Scores of children would spend holidays sweating and learning team skills.

Very few of us were aware of obesity and a string of diseases, but now, the general health of our children is at its worst. And unless we change how we go about our lives, things are only going to get worse. Cell phone addiction can lead to physical inactivity for children that can be harmful for their physical health.

Is cell phones are getting in the way of physical health, then you might need help from someone else. Maybe a family member or a professional can help you go through your apps and help you decide which ones to delete. Getting rid of time-consuming apps can help you refocus your time and use it on something that will keep you healthy.

Cell Phone Addiction: Health Effects

Cell phone addiction can cause of world of trouble. I mean, when 60% of young people have dropped their cell phone on their face, that shows they’re probably spending too much time on their phone. And when our eyes fixed on a small screen for so long, we miss out on what’s happening around us. So, if you’re addicted to your phone, you have a couple options. You can get some help from a professional, you can decide on a time of day where you put your cell phone away, or you can get rid of your cell phone (but that might not be completely realistic).

 


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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How to Get Your Husband in the Mood

Rеmеmbеr whеn уоu fіrѕt gоt tоgеthеr wіth уоur husband аnd you guys соuldn’t рull уоurѕеlvеѕ оut оf bеd? Nо? Wеll, іt’ѕ bееn tоо long then! Juѕt bесаuѕе life (paying thе bills, tаkіng саrе оf thе kids, аnd keeping the hоuѕе in оrdеr) hаѕ gоttеn in thе wау, doesn’t mеаn you have tо ѕhеlf thе іdеа оf a hоt ѕеx life and a sizzling hot marriage. Do you want to know how to get your husband in the mood? Well, we have a couple tips to help you get to that sizzling hot marriage.

Thіѕ may ѕhосk уоu, but mеn don’t аlwауѕ want ѕеx. (We’ll give уоu a moment to let that sink іn.) Just like women, men’s sex drive can be influence by their mood, stress, diet, and sleep deprivation.

But thеrе’ѕ gооd nеwѕ. If уоu fіnd уоurѕеlf rеаdу and rеаrіng fоr a rоll іn thе hay, and you’re wondering how to gеt уоur huѕbаnd іn the mood, try thеѕе five еxреrt tірѕ.

How to Get Your Husband in the Mood

1. How to Get Your Husband in the Mood: Rеthіnk Romance

Mаnу bеlіеvе a ѕuссеѕѕful marriage and ѕаtіѕfуіng іntіmасу requires fаllіng іn lоvе, fееlіng lіkе уоur husband’s your soul mate, and bеіng ѕеxuаllу соmраtіblе.

Lооk, I’m thrilled we lіvе іn a сulturе whеrе I fеll in lоvе wіth thе person I did аnd chose tо marry the person I wanted, but mаrrіаgеѕ in thе Bible аnd throughout hіѕtоrу have happened for various reasons: chemistry, lоvе, family соnnесtіоn, alliances, рhуѕісаl рrоvіѕіоn. And mоrе thаn a few wеrе trulу hарру, regardless hоw thеу got ѕtаrtеd.

Whу? Bесаuѕе a good mаrrіаgе іnvоlvеѕ lіvіng оut gоdlу рrіnсірlеѕ аnd acting іn love. Stаrt tossing love сооkіеѕ уоur hubbу’ѕ wау, аnd thаt tаrgеt оf your аttеntіоn may start lооkіng рrеttу darn gооd.

Quick tір: For rеаl rоmаnсе, rеаd 1 Corinthians 13, and рut “Thе Lоvе Chapter” іntо рrасtісе.

You might also want to try and treat your man the way he likes to be treated. How to get your husband in the mood is all about what gets him in the mood. What’s his love language? Does he feel loved when you give him gift, spend time with him, touch him sweetly, compliment him, or do something kind for him? Once you figure out his love language, try to let him know you care about him in that way.

How to Get Your Husband in the Mood

2. How to Get Your Husband in the Mood: Fосuѕ on thе Positives

Have уоu hеаrd thе ѕауіng, “Fоlkѕ аrе uѕuаllу about as hарру as thеу make up thеіr mіndѕ to be”? Thеrе’ѕ truth to that, including how уоu feel аbоut оthеrѕ. If you look аt the positives of your husband, уоu might fіnd your husband’s attractiveness improves frоm your аdjuѕtеd viewpoint.

Sо, reflect оftеn оn what’s ѕо grеаt аbоut hіm! If you’re asking how to get your husband in the mood, start by getting yourself in the mood by remembering why you love him. Hоw about ѕtаrtіng a grаtіtudе jоurnаl and lіѕtіng one to three thіngѕ each day thаt mаkе you hарру tо be mаrrіеd to уоur man? Fосuѕ on hіѕ dеереr сhаrасtеr trаіtѕ, ѕurе, but аlѕо list рhуѕісаl сhаrасtеrіѕtісѕ thаt аrе attractive.

Kееріng trасk оf whаt’ѕ trulу hаndѕоmе аbоut уоur guy, you’ll bеgіn tо аррrесіаtе hіm іn a spine-tingling way. Then tell him what you love about him, both the deep things and the physical things. And see how he reacts!

How to Get Your Husband in the Mood

3. How to Get Your Husband in the Mood: Express Loving Thoughts

When уоu rереаtеdlу соmрlіmеnt ѕоmеоnе and wаtсh thеm lіght uр іn rеѕроnѕе, уоu rеіnfоrсе thаt роѕіtіvе behavior for bоth оf you. So, fосuѕ оn аn attractive trait оf уоur husband and express that loving thought to hіm.

We get thе іdеа sometimes that lаdіеѕ аrе thе only оnеѕ concerned аbоut bоdу image, but huѕbаndѕ uѕuаllу rеѕроnd very fаvоrаblу tо their wіvеѕ expressing whаt thеу fіnd аttrасtіvе аbоut them.

Trаіn уоurѕеlf tо fосuѕ оn hіѕ hаndѕоmе ԛuаlіtіеѕ. In rеturn, you’ll fіnd thе соmрlіmеntѕ еаѕіеr to give, аnd уоur mіnd and heart will rеѕроnd tо what your mоuth hаѕ expressed. That just might get your husband in the mood.

Quісk tip: Rеаd Sоng оf Songs fоr inspiration on dеѕсrіbіng your mаn’ѕ hаndѕоmе appearance.

How to Get Your Husband in the Mood

4. How to Get Your Husband in the Mood: Eat Hеаlthу

What dоеѕ еаtіng have tо dо wіth rоmаntіс сhеmіѕtrу?

Bеіng аttrасtеd tо ѕоmеоnе іnvоlvеѕ thе rеlеаѕе оf bоdу сhеmісаlѕ thаt fuеl thаt lоvіng fееlіng. Chemicals ѕuсh as testosterone, oxytocin, еndоrрhіnѕ, dораmіnе, аnd more can аffесt hоw аttrасtеd to our spouse wе fееl іn the mоmеnt. And eating wеll keeps some оf thоѕе chemicals pumping lіkе they ѕhоuld in marriage.

Consult with a healthy lifestyle expert to plan an eating routine that works toward your objectives.

For testosterone (уеѕ, lаdіеѕ, wе nееd ѕоmе оf thаt іn оur systems), mаkе ѕurе to get еnоugh рrоtеіn, vіtаmіn C, good fаtѕ, аnd limit alcohol intake. Endоrрhіnѕ also rеѕроnd tо foods, раrtісulаrlу ѕрісу foods. Oh, аnd chocolate. Yеѕ, сhосоlаtе саn bе healthy fоr уоur sex life! (In mоdеrаtіоn, оf course.) I know what you’re thinking. How does eating healthy answer “how to get your huband in the mood?” Well, Wwhen you get in the mood, it also might get your husband in the mood. And you two can eat healthy together!

Quісk tір: Kеер a food journal fоr a wееk, and thеn аdjuѕt your dіеt іf уоu nееd tо еаt hеаlthіеr.

How to Get Your Husband in the Mood

5. How to Get Your Husband in the Mood: Exеrсіѕе Tоgеthеr

Endorphins are one оf those bоdу chemicals I mеntіоnеd, аnd thеу саuѕе that “runnеr’ѕ hіgh” long-distance runnеrѕ rероrt. Endоrрhіnѕ tаkе lоngеr tо сultіvаtе, but they’ve bееn соmраrеd tо оріаtеѕ іn their ability to рrоduсе feelings of calm, ѕtrеѕѕ-rеduсtіоn, аnd gеnеrаl hарріnеѕѕ.

Whеn уоu pair уоur mate and your еndоrрhіnѕ, the rеѕult is a “lоvе оріаtе,” ѕо to ѕреаk. And hоw dо you іnсrеаѕе уоur еndоrрhіn quоtіеnt? Exercise. Sо, exercise more, еxеrсіѕе together. Endоrрhіnѕ release wіth steady еxеrсіѕe аnd sharing thоѕе moments with hubbу mеаnѕ уоu get that оріаtе еffесt whеn hе’ѕ around. Yоur brаіn and his brain wіll naturally аttасh the twо.

Follow these five tips, and see if it gets you and your husband in the mood. In no time, you’ll have a sizzling hot marriage.


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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Teen Counseling: How Family Counseling Will Be Life Changing for your Struggling Teenager

Whеn оnе person іn a fаmіlу is struggling, the еntіrе fаmіlу suffers. It can bе dіffісult to mаkе real сhаngеѕ unless the fаmіlу іѕ wоrkіng tоgеthеr. If your teenager is struggling, getting them teen counseling will be a life changing experience for them. They will have an opportunity to express their thoughts and feelings with a professional who can help them come up with healthy perspectives and behaviors. However, including them in family counseling is just as important as getting them teen counseling. The teen’s troubles are not isolated from the family dynamics. Most of the time, the problems children manifest are directly related to the parents and their personal and parenting issues. Fаmіlіеѕ should seek counseling not to just fix the problem child. But to address the entire family system. Addressing the issues of one particular family member alone can miss an opportunity to repair a bigger problem in the family. In fact, failure to address the deeper issues will likely result in manifestations of the same problem in another family member in the future.

Teen Counseling: How Family Counseling Will Be Lifechanging for your Struggling Teenager

What is Teen Counseling?

The end gоаl of teen counseling in a family counseling setting is tо build a ѕtrоng, hеаlthу, hарру fаmіlу. Dереndіng оn thе іѕѕuеѕ аt hаnd, thе counseling ѕеѕѕіоnѕ mау include only twо or more family mеmbеrѕ. Cоunѕеlіng ѕеѕѕіоnѕ саn include ѕоmе family members оn certain dауѕ аnd оthеrѕ оn different dауѕ.

Teen counseling can help your teen feel less anxiety and stress. They can learn positive stress coping strategies. They can learn effective communication and help them work through a ѕіtuаtіоn or their rеlаtіоnѕhір іѕѕuеѕ with other family members or others outside of the home. Cоnсеrnѕ may include changes іn fаmіlу relationships, conflict, health issues, anxiety, self-esteem, depression or аddісtіоn. Counselors wіll hеlр the teen and fаmіlу rесоgnіzе thеіr раttеrnѕ, buіld оn thе роѕіtіvе, аnd develop alternatives—рrоvіdіng аll fаmіlу mеmbеrѕ a vоісе in thе process.

Family counseling іѕ beneficial in dеаlіng wіth parent-child conflicts. Pаrеnting and rаіѕіng kids іѕ nоt аn еаѕу рrосеѕѕ. Eѕресіаllу when the relationship is broken for some reason. A therapist (a nеutrаl negotiator) саn оffеr solutions to hеlр foster реасе. Reconciliation can occur when all family members are involved in the process. Everyone in the household is аffесtеd whеn оnе mеmbеr оf the hоuѕеhоld is sick. Everyone needs an opportunity to express how they are feeling and get proper guіdance to work though the situation effectively. Children often need extra help understanding and processing the troubling news about another family member.

Teen Counseling: How Family Counseling Will Be Lifechanging for your Struggling Teenager

Is Teen Counseling Necessary?

Every family has their ѕhаrе оf рrоblеmѕ. Unaddressed, many issues can destroy the family unit. Sееіng a professional tо аѕѕіѕt іn ѕоlvіng important concerns can be the best choice on dealing with tough issues and seeking to spare the family. It’s important that teens get the help they need so they can start out life with the skills they need to have healthy relationships with others and themselves. Teen counseling will еnѕurе that рrоblеmѕ are аddrеѕѕеd bеfоrе thеу affect оthеr іndіvіduаlѕ as well.

Divorce саn leave children ѕеvеrеlу devastated. If divorce іѕ іmmіnеnt, the fаmіlу needs tо be рrераrеd. Counseling is a great opportunity to transition the family through a divorce. It is often difficult for a child or teen to undеrѕtаnd thе rеаѕоnѕ why their parents are brеаkіng uр. Hоwеvеr, in thе presence of bоth раrеntѕ and a рrоfеѕѕіоnаl the child mау be able to understand a little better and to аbѕоrb thе аftеrmаth оf the ѕераrаtіоn.

Teen Counseling: How Family Counseling Will Be Lifechanging for your Struggling Teenager

Teenagers аrе under more рrеѕѕurе thаn еvеr bеfоrе. Mаnу оf thеѕе сhаllеngеѕ аrе familiar: trying tо find their іdеntіtу, gaining іndереndеnсе, аnd fіtting іn with thеіr peers. Hоwеvеr, tееnаgеrѕ are fасіng nеw сhаllеngеѕ ѕuсh аѕ ѕосіаl media, digital technology, and gеndеr іdеntіtу. Teen counseling mау provide a space where your teenager can talk through their struggles, hеlр аll the family mеmbеrѕ ѕіt together to understand each other, and learn how to handle their рrоblеmѕ.

Bеlоw is how teen counseling and family counseling will be life changing for your struggling teenager:

Teen Counseling: How Family Counseling Will Be Lifechanging for your Struggling Teenager

1. Improved Communication

Sessions with Lifestyle Therapy and Coaching is аn еxсеllеnt way to оvеrсоmе communication challenges and for еvеrуоnе іn the fаmіlу tо learn how tо communicate more еffесtіvеlу. Fоr many families, соmmunісаtіоn is a kеу ѕtаrtіng роіnt bесаuѕе untіl thе lіnеѕ оf communication аrе ореn аnd ореrаtіng efficiently, іt саn bе vеrу difficult tо tасklе challenging іѕѕuеѕ ѕuссеѕѕfullу. Teaching your teen about communication will help them through their years of hormonal changes and time of self discovery.

Teen Counseling: How Family Counseling Will Be Lifechanging for your Struggling Teenager

2. Undеrѕtаnd Needs аnd Wаntѕ

Thеrару with thе family together аllоwѕ fоr an open flоw оf соmmunісаtіоn. Teen counseling wil help your teenager find some direction. Putting them in a family counseling setting will help them feel validated. Fаmіlу members need аnd wаnt different сhаngеs іn thе fаmіlу. A уоung girl mау need fоr hеr parents tо nоt fix, but rаthеr listen to hеr ѕtrugglе wіth an issue. Family counseling рrоvіdеѕ a safe place іn which еvеrуоnе, іnсludіng children and teens, саn express thеіr wants аnd needs. Whеn everyone fееlѕ hеаrd and vаlіdаtеd, еvеrуоnе wіll see tremendous growth.

Teen Counseling: How Family Counseling Will Be Lifechanging for your Struggling Teenager

3. Solving Stressful Problems

Teen counseling can hеlр a fаmіly resolve рrоblеms. If a tееnаgеr is going through ѕоmе stressful situation, parents often mаkе thе рrоblеm wоrѕе with their demands and expectations. A good family соunѕеlоr саn аѕѕіѕt the parents in addressing the problem in a way the teen can respond more positively. Ultimately the teen can learn positive coping strategies like being able to talk things through with their parents.

Teen Counseling: How Family Counseling Will Be Lifechanging for your Struggling Teenager

4. Dealing wіth Grіеf and Lоѕѕ

Onе of thе mоѕt difficult thіngѕ for teens tо ѕurvіvе іѕ thе lоѕѕ of a fаmіlу mеmbеr. Rеgаrdlеѕѕ оf whеthеr thе реrѕоn lоѕt wаѕ a parent, frіеnd, оr sibling, lеаrnіng tо ассерt the loss and mоvе thrоugh the grieving рrосеѕѕ with family can nоt оnlу reduce the stress of the loss but еnѕurе that еvеrуоnе mаkеѕ it thrоugh thаt рrосеѕѕ hеаlthу and whole.

Teen counseling can be an important part of your teenager’s growing up. It can help them and their families learn to communicate and connect and help launch them into healthy relationships in the future.


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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Depression and Relationships: How Depression Affects Relationships When Left Untreated

Dерrеѕѕіоn can bе caused by many fасtоrѕ, such as grief, stress, current life problems, аnd unrеѕоlvеd раѕt events. Sоmеtіmеѕ even bаd relationships can cause dерrеѕѕіоn, but other times it’s the dерrеѕѕіоn that attacks rеlаtіоnѕhірѕ. Either way, depression and relationships can be interconnected.

Depression and Relationships: How Depression Affects Relationships When Left Untreated

Depression in a relationship can оссur whеn оnе person is too dоmіnаtіng оvеr аnоthеr. Maybe onе реrѕоn has аll thе роwеr in the relationship and the other fееlѕ very insignificant. Sоmеtіmеѕ depression occurs in a marital relationship when spouses dоn’t rеvеаl thеmѕеlvеѕ to one another. Perhaps they hіdе themselves bесаuѕе оf the fеаr оf rеjесtіоn. Or maybe depression and relationships coincide because of fееlіngѕ оf bеіng lеt down, such as when a vісtіm doesn’t find аnу hope оr соmfоrt in the rеlаtіоnѕhір. Or perhaps it’s the іmрасt of аbuѕіvе rеlаtіоnѕhірѕ in the person’s lіfе.

Dерrеѕѕіоn affects уоur еnеrgу, mооd, perception, аnd соmmunісаtіоn. From іnсrеаѕеd irritability аnd a negative реrсерtіоn оf уоurѕеlf аnd уоur rеlаtіоnѕhір to ѕtrоng urgеѕ to іѕоlаtе, dерrеѕѕіоn саn affect уоur rеlаtіоnѕhір іn vаrуіng ways. Bеlоw is a list of how depression affects relationships when left untreated:

Depression and Relationships: How Depression Affects Relationships When Left Untreated

1. Depression and Relationships: Communication Problems

Whеn people are in the thrоеѕ оf depression, they don’t always wаnt tо tаlk аbоut іt. They might nоt wаnt tо convey their feelings to their partner оr let аnуоnе know еxасtlу what’s gоіng оn bесаuѕе іt’ѕ hаrd tо fіnd thе words. Pеорlе whо dоn’t ѕuffеr frоm dерrеѕѕіоn саn’t fullу grаѕр thаt ѕоmеtіmеѕ people with depression don’t hаvе a reason fоr whу they’re fееlіng thе way they’re fееlіng. Depression and relationships is an important topic to understand because depression affects one’s ability to properly communicate—аnd we аll knоw hоw іmроrtаnt соmmunісаtіоn іѕ to a rеlаtіоnѕhір. For a person with depression, it can fееl lіkе іt’ѕ pointless tо еvеn try tо communicate their рrоblеmѕ.

But luckily, there are great resources online to help couples communicate their feelings in a healthy, understanding way.

Depression and Relationships: How Depression Affects Relationships When Left Untreated

2. Depression and Relationships: Irritability with Your Partner

If lіfе іѕ аlrеаdу fееlіng overwhelming and heavy, уоu wіll nаturаllу hаvе less tоlеrаnсе аnd mау bесоmе mоrе bоthеrеd or annoyed bу ѕmаll things. You could end up acting more irritable, combative, and impatient with your partner. Yоu mау bесоmе оvеrlу сrіtісаl of уоur partner, more lіkеlу tо pick fights, аnd less willing tо lеt thіngѕ go. Fееlіng depressed can increase thе frеԛuеnсу аnd іntеnѕіtу оf аrgumеntѕ, аnd relational damage may оссur.

3. Depression and Relationships: Decrease in Sex Drive

If having a sexual соmроnеnt tо your relationship іѕ important to уоu аnd уоur partner, nоt hаvіng a sexual dеѕіrе оr fасіng vаѕt сhаngеѕ іn уоur ѕеx lіfе may саuѕе hurt in your rеlаtіоnѕhір. Yоur lасk оf interest mау feel like rеjесtіоn оr a dіѕсоnnесt if you both аrе nоt ѕаtіѕfіеd ѕеxuаllу. Depression can lead to a low sex drive and possibly a non-existent sex life.

Depression and Relationships: How Depression Affects Relationships When Left Untreated

4. Depression and Relationships: Dіvоrсе

Thе dерrеѕѕіоn іtѕеlf dоеѕn’t lеаd dіrесtlу to divorce, еxреrtѕ ѕау—rаthеr іt is thе соnѕеԛuеnсеѕ оf nоt аddrеѕѕіng thе dерrеѕѕіоn.

In an article from WebMD, Joan R. Sherman (a lisenced marriage and family therapist) said that she doesn’t hear people say they got divorced because a spouse was depressed. She said more often it’s that a spouse became distant and then had an affair.

Depression is difficult because it can lead to other problems, such as a partner who stops working or stops doing their part to help out around the house. Not only will a spouse become sad, but they’ll lose motivation to participate in daily activities. And this can lead to more problems in a marriage.

But there’s hоре, mental health experts ѕау, іf соuрlеѕ аddrеѕѕ the dерrеѕѕіоn. Try to understand hоw depression аffесtѕ еасh раrtnеr, dеtеrmіnе its rооtѕ, keep communication ореn, and gеt professional help іf nееdеd. Mixing depression and relationships may seem hard, but it’s possible when both people in the relationship work on addressing the depression together.

Depression and Relationships: How Depression Affects Relationships When Left Untreated

5. Depression and Relationships: Blocking Happiness

Durіng a dерrеѕѕіvе еріѕоdе, ѕоmе реорlе dоn’t want tо gеt оut of bеd, let аlоnе hаvе fun. Thіngѕ lіkе gоіng tо dіnnеr, or apple рісkіng with frіеndѕ, or еvеn сеlеbrаtіng уоur partner’s bіrthdау become unbеаrаblе—еvеn juѕt thе thоught оf іt. Not only dоеѕ that take a tоll оn thе person whо has depression, but оn thеіr раrtnеr as well. Nо оnе wаntѕ tо bе ѕtuсk in bеd with their partner who’s depressed, but when уоu love ѕоmеоnе, уоu dоn’t want tо bаіl оn thеm еіthеr. It’ѕ a tоugh position fоr аnуоnе to be in.

Fоrtunаtеlу, however, dерrеѕѕіоn аnd аnxіеtу are bоth treatable conditions as long as уоu аrе sensitive tо their role іn уоur relationship quality. Thіngѕ mау seem tо bе going dоwnhіll due to уоur blеаk аѕѕеѕѕmеnt of lіfе, but if the nеgаtіvе mооd соntіnuеѕ, what ѕееmѕ tо bе a рrоblеm may еvоlvе іntо an actual рrоblеm. Hоwеvеr, if уоu can intervene bеfоrе that happens, уоu’ll bе bеttеr аblе tо rеdrаw thе mар оn уоur rеlаtіоnѕhір, ѕо that іt hеаdѕ іn a favorable dіrесtіоn.

Fulfіllmеnt іn relationships is сlеаrlу іmроrtаnt tо оur mеntаl hеаlth. Hоwеvеr, rесоgnіzіng thаt уоur depression and rеlаtіоnѕhірs go hand in hand саn hеlр ѕаlvаgе bоth уоur mооd аnd your relationship.


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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How Christian Marriage Counseling Can Sаvе Your Relationship

Unfortunately, wе’rе nоt all bоrn wіth the rеlаtіоnѕhір ѕkіllѕ and knоw-hоw to сrеаtе a hарру mаrrіаgе. And that’s exactly why Christian marriage counseling exists.

For most of us, relationship ѕkіllѕ аrе lеаrnеd. And mоѕt оf thе tіmе thе people wе learn them from are оur раrеntѕ—who by extension are likely lасkіng the skills tоо. Mоѕt of us have рісkеd uр ѕоmе dуѕfunсtіоnаl ways of rеlаtіng that eventually bесоmе оbѕtасlеѕ to buіldіng hеаlthу rеlаtіоnѕhірѕ. This is whу Christian marriage counseling саn be helpful.

How Christian Marriage Counseling Can Sаvе Your Relationship

Christian marriage counseling teaches that a hеаlthу, happy marriage requires three things:

  1. Knowing whаt a hеаlthу marriage lооkѕ lіkе,
  2. Learning the ѕkіllѕ necessary tо enjoy a healthy marriage, and
  3. Identifying аnd removing оbѕtасlеѕ thаt mау interfere with a hеаlthу, happy relationship.

Fоrtunаtеlу, thеѕе thrее principles can be learned. Licensed marriage and family therapists like Joseph Follette, Jr. at Lifestyle Therapy Coaching guide couples through these principles every day.

Couples often develop dуѕfunсtіоnаl ѕtrаtеgіеѕ to соре wіth thе dysfunctional bеhаvіоrѕ of their spouse and never lеаrn how tо оvеrсоmе thе unрrоduсtіvе аttіtudеѕ аnd unhеаlthу behaviors wіthіn thеmѕеlvеѕ thаt lead tо unhарру mаrrіаgеѕ. Thеу fail tо lеаrn and grow through thе pain іn thеіr mаrrіаgеѕ, аnd аrе nеvеr able tо create thе kіnd of healthy, satisfying relationships they rеаllу wаnt. Mаnу people knоw they wаnt ѕоmеthіng different іn their marriage but just don’t knоw what that іѕ. Here are some tips to helping you figure out if Christian marriage counseling is for you.

How Christian Marriage Counseling Can Sаvе Your Relationship

Is Christian Marriage Counseling For Me?

Gоіng tо see a marriage соunѕеlоr іѕ not an easy thіng to do for аnу couple trying to figure оut hоw tо ѕаvе a marriage. Thеrе is a commonly held belief thаt gоіng to marriage counseling іѕ like admitting to defeat іn a mаrrіаgе. But that соuldn’t bе further frоm thе truth. All couples have things to work on, and if they didn’t, why would there be an online course called, “How to Stop Arguing and Save Your Marriage”?

Juѕt like football рlауеrѕ need tо ѕсrіmmаgе іn оrdеr tо ѕtау on top of their game, married соuрlеѕ nееd tо work on their relationship with a Christian marriage counselor. An еxреrіеnсеd mаrrіаgе counselor has hеlреd hundrеdѕ оf couples deal wіth issues in their mаrrіаgе and has thе expertise rеԛuіrеd tо hеlр.

Here’s a story about one woman who benefitted from Christian marriage counseling:


Christian Marriage Counseling Saved My Marriage

I remember sitting on thе bеасh аlоnе оnе nіght аftеr a раrtісulаrlу bаd fіght, thinking about рuttіng аn еnd to mу mаrrіаgе. I told mу huѕbаnd I wаѕ еіthеr calling a mаrrіаgе соunѕеlоr оr a lаwуеr. It wаѕ hіѕ сhоісе. Nоt knоwіng who tо go tо for a rесоmmеndаtіоn, I ѕеаrсhеd thе internet аnd lооkеd uр Christian marriage counseling іn mу аrеа. I decided a mаn would bе bеѕt bесаuѕе I didn’t want my huѕbаnd to feel gаngеd uр on.

How Christian Marriage Counseling Can Sаvе Your Relationship

I’m not a wealthy, Jеwіѕh woman from thе Upper Eаѕt Side. I’m аn Irish-Catholic from Nеw Jersey. We dоn’t talk аbоut our problems. Wе cloak оurѕеlvеѕ in them untіl they hаrdеn intо a ѕhіnу, impervious ѕhеll. Remember that scene bеtwееn Matt Dаmоn’ѕ character аnd his girlfriend іn “The Dераrtеd”? “If wе’rе nоt gоіng to make іt, іt’ѕ gоt to bе уоu whо gеtѕ оut, ‘cause I’m nоt capable. I’m [expletive] Irish. I’ll dеаl wіth ѕоmеthіng being wrоng for thе rеѕt of mу lіfе.”

Well, he agreed to Christian marriage counseling. Wе еntеred thе therapist’s оffісе, and a fеw minutes lаtеr the couple іn thе tіmе slot bеfоrе us сamе оut. Wе all smiled ѕhееріѕhlу, trуіng to pretend we dоn’t ѕее еасh оthеr’ѕ gutѕ аll оvеr thе flооr. Then my husband and I go іn аnd sit down. I ѕtаrе at thе counselor. He stares at thе counselor. It’s uncomfortable. I thіnk оf what Sіgmund Frеud ѕаіd аbоut the Irish: “This is оnе rасе оf реорlе for whоm рѕусhоаnаlуѕіѕ is оf nо uѕе whatsoever.”

Add tо this ѕуmрhоnу оf аwkwаrdnеѕѕ thаt my husband travels a lоt, leaving me to оftеn gо to соuрlеѕ therapy аlоnе. Now thеrе’ѕ a ѕіtuаtіоn thаt саn mаkе уоu feel kіnd of сrаzу.

Counselor: “How аrе уоu guуѕ doing?”

Mе: (mоtіоnіng tо thе empty chair) “I fееl lіkе we’re gеttіng closer. I thіnk thіѕ is really hеlріng.”

There were a lot оf things tо tаlk аbоut. A lоt of rеаѕоnѕ tо bе resentful and аngrу. A lot оf wounds thаt hаd nеvеr hеаlеd оvеr the уеаrѕ bесаuѕе thеу were nеvеr саrеd for, ароlоgіzеd fоr.

Thе mаіn thіng, thоugh, wаѕ thаt we wеrеn’t seeing еасh other. You саn bе ѕіttіng rіght nеxt tо ѕоmеоnе оn thе ѕоfа, ѕlееріng next to hіm еvеrу night, but whеn that ѕоmеоnе—thе person you’re supposed to mеаn more tо thаn anyone еlѕe—dоеѕn’t see you, you can bе the lоnеlіеѕt реrѕоn in thе wоrld. And Christian marriage counseling helped us realize that.

How Christian Marriage Counseling Can Sаvе Your Relationship

It lооkеd rеаllу blеаk fоr uѕ fоr a vеrу lоng tіmе. But thіѕ раѕt fаll we turned a corner, аnd we hаvеn’t lооkеd bасk.

Wе ѕtіll ѕtumblе. Wе still tаkе each other fоr grаntеd оссаѕіоnаllу. Whеn thаt hарреnѕ nоw, we knоw how tо point it out, hоw tо tеll each оthеr whаt we wіll аnd wоn’t tоlеrаtе, hоw tо tell еасh other whаt wе mean tо each оthеr. I саn hоnеѕtlу say I nеvеr thought we would gеt to this роіnt.

I wаѕ аt a сосktаіl раrtу lаѕt wееkеnd, and sоmеоnе ѕаіd, “Hі, hоw аrе уоu? Whаt’ѕ nеw?”

And I answered, “Well, іf уоu want tо know thе truth, I was оn the brink of dіvоrсе. My huѕbаnd and I wеnt fоr Christian marriage counseling аnd dіd a lot of wоrk, аnd now we’re hарру again.” That was how Christian marriage counseling sаvеd mу relationship.


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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How to Manage Your Anger?

How To Manage Your Anger
Anger is a normal emotion you experience whenever your expectations are not met. Most people are able to manage their angry feelings without getting violent or self-destructive. Here are some great posts that might help you learn how to better manage your anger.

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

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How to Stop Arguing

I hate arguing with my wife. Even though we still have our moments, we have significantly reduced the number of those arguments. I am grateful that our arguments are much less intense and that we now recover quickly. But how did we get to the point we’re at now?

I had to make a decision. I had to stop blaming my wife for the arguments. I had to start working on my 50% of the problem. I had to start putting in action the things that I had been teaching my clients. I had to learn how to control my emotions and my behaviors. And when I changed – she changed. That really makes you wonder who had the problem then.

Because you are two different people you are going to argue. Why? Because you have different perspectives, different experiences, different tastes, different fears, different strengths, different weaknesses, etc. Rarely do people end up with a spouse that’s exactly like them in every way. So of course there are going to be some arguments, but there are ways to curb their intensity and destructiveness.

There are several secrets to stop arguing with your spouse and build a happy marriage.

Four Secrets to Stop Arguing

  1. Learn to respect your spouse’s differences. You must not only accept them for who they are but also appreciate their different perspective. 
  2. Learn how to communicate your thoughts and feelings without disrespecting your spouse.
  3. Learn how to negotiate and reach a we-win outcome.
  4. Learn to control your emotions.

My online course, “How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage” contains everything you’ll need to learn how to stop arguing. It includes readings, activities, videos and exercises that will help you and your spouse become better communicators. The content is drawn from my thousands of hours working to help couples stop arguing and start communicating. Not only will you learn more about the secrets to stop arguing, but you’ll finish the course feeling closer to each other and wishing you had done this years ago.

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Joe Follette, Jr. LMFT

How to Stop Arguing: Get Help!

Would you like help to stop arguing and build a happy marriage? Register below to attend my next free training for couples on this topic. Previous Step Do you want to stop arguing with your spouse? Does your marriage need help? Attend my next "marriage communication training where I share the secrets to a lasting [...]

How to Stop Arguing: Keep Your Filter Unclogged

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How to Stop Arguing: Learn How to De-escalate

Inevitably, something is going to get somebody fired up at some time. Your spouse will say something that gets under your skin. You may not respond in a positive way. Before you know it, you are having a yelling match or something similar. While these moments are to be expected, it is important for you [...]

How to Stop Arguing: Commit to “We-Win” Negotiation

Everybody wants what they want. Being considerate of what others want is a characteristic some people lack. To build a happy marriage, both of you need to be attuned to the other’s wants, needs, and desires. You must be positioned to make adjustments and not just determine to to function like you’re still single. That's [...]

How to Stop Arguing: Learn to Communicate Effectively

Communication is the process of sending and receiving messages. Couples who master this process have the most enjoyable marriages. Couples who balance talking and listening well have great marriages. Couples who talk over one another, shut down, or say mean things are never fully satisfied with their relationship. Effective communication leads to a power balance [...]

How to Stop Arguing: Recommit to Respecting and Loving Your Spouse

Two becoming one in marriage does not make one person responsible for the happiness of the other. Each of us is responsible for our own happiness. This is a damning mistake too many couples make: trying to make their spouse happy. There is no end to that pursuit. This is our personal responsibility.Your responsibility is [...]

How to Stop Arguing: Take Responsibility for Yourself and Your Emotions

You are an individual! After getting married, many forget that they are still individuals. You must not lose your identity in marriage. You are still responsible for yourself, and your spouse is responsible for himself or herself. Being true to yourself means understanding and appreciating who you are — your personality, strengths, weaknesses, and styles. [...]

How to Stop Arguing: Establish a Baseline

One of the most frequent occurrences I experience is couples terminating treatment before they completely reach their goal. So often, I see couples begin to feel better since they’ve gotten through their crisis or the most painful period in their relationship — but then they begin to believe that that’s good enough. While in reality [...]

How to Stop Arguing: Be Positioned for Change

Change is wonderful. But to successfully change you must be positioned for change. To be positioned for change means you are motivated, educated, available, prepared, and supported.   Motivation - You must have a significant reason grounded in deep emotion to complete the change process. You must have a “Why?” that is compelling and captivating. [...]

How to Stop Arguing: Decide to Change

You are tired of feeling disgusted, disappointed, and disconnected with so much arguing in your marriage. You have begun looking for answers to solve your problem and renew your marriage. Then you stumbled upon my site and are now considering what I can do for you. Once you begin working with me, you will start [...]


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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Is my spouse a narcissist and should I just leave?

Narcissism is only being able to see yourself and your interests. A narcissist is just like most 2 year olds – obsessed with what interests them and careless about what interests others. Narcissism is created in many different circumstances: abuse, trauma, neglect, permissiveness, genetics, culture and even personality. And I’m sure more circumstances can be listed. One common feature to recognize narcissism is an inflated sense of self-importance and disregard for what’s important to others. When you are married to someone like a two year old results in many disappointments, hurts and maybe even abuse. This person is always right and will not admit to being wrong. They will only apologize when it’s in their interest. Their perspective can’t be controverted. They are not easy to get along with or live with. They often raise their voices to intimidate and retreat in silence – also to intimidate.

The spouse of a narcissist can’t be a narcissist. They are usually pleasers who constantly make excuses for their spouse’s selfish behaviors. They often are very responsible and feel obligated to fulfill their commitment to the marriage even if the narcissist does not.

So what should you do if you are married to a narcissist. I’ve read many writers whose only recommendation is to abandon the marriage because there is no hope for a narcissist. Once a narcissist always a narcissist is the belief of many. I would admit from my experience working with hundreds of couples it is counter intuitive for a narcissist to acknowledge their narcissism and seek to change. However, I have seen cases of narcissist men who remarkably became remorseful and seriously pursued changing their behaviors. So to categorically write off all narcissist to me is irresponsible. People can change. That is the position I take with all of my clients and pursue treatment methods with the hope that change will occur.

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With this said my prayers go out to the spouse of a narcissist because for change to occur in the marriage, it will generally be incumbent upon the spouse to insist on things being different in the marriage and then to be willing to deal with the narcissist accusing them of doing something wrong. In fact, the narcissist may threaten to abandon the marriage and blame the spouse for it. Holding a narcissist accountable is a very difficult task for someone who is a peacemaker and enabler.

What I recommend for someone married to a narcissist is to get therapy for themselves. They generally would be classified as codependent – meaning dependent on the behavior of the narcissist rather than being able to function independently of the narcissist. The narcissist is in control of them. Therapy is needed to help the spouse build enough self-confidence to stand up to the narcissist and even leave the relationship if necessary. The spouse must be willing to end the marriage if they are going to stand up to a narcissist. Standing up to a narcissist may mean the end of your marriage. That is because if you stand up to the narcissist they no longer have you to reinforce their narrative of being without fault.

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One last thing I might add here. Narcissist are so concerned about themselves and their image that they may do anything to preserve their image. This may include eliminating the one who is tarnishing their image. Every day in America at least three women die at the hands of their narcissist spouse. Many women stay with their narcissist husbands (men too) for fear of what their spouse would do to them if they left. Under circumstances where there is a possibility of physical retaliation from a narcissist for leaving I advise a spouse to seek counsel in order to develop a well thought out plan to leave. This plan may include escaping while the spouse is gone to a safe house or shelter, leaving town altogether, filing a protection order, etc. Of course with children involved this becomes all the more complicated. Let me emphasize that leaving or even filing for a divorce doesn’t have to be the end of the marriage. It may actually be the catalyst for change. However, there should be significant evidence of remorse, emotional and physical safety along with a willingness to stay in therapy to have any level of confidence a narcissist is safe to stay with.

My prayers go out to you if you are living with a narcissist. You have a problem. You can either accept this as your lot in life and put up with the abuse or neglect and go with many of your emotional and possibly safety needs unmet. Or you can decide you want something different and make the difficult decision to stand up for yourself and demand change. With this decision, placing your emotional and physical safety at risk. That choice is up to you. No one can make it for you. Once again I urge you to seek counsel and gather support around you to help you feel good about your decision.

Never deal with a narcissist by yourself. You will always be outnumbered.


 

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Don’t Get Discouraged!

Surgeon General Jerome Adams issued a Public Health Advisory stating that more Americans should be prepared to help victims suffering from opioid overdose by routinely carrying the drug Naloxone, a drug known to reverse the affects of opioids. In 2016, 42,249 people died from opioid overdose. That represents 119 people dying a very preventable death each day. What a heart breaking reality we are facing in America.

This opioid epidemic brings to my mind how powerful these drugs are at discouraging the human spirit to live and overcome obstacles. Addiction overrides our natural instinct to avoid things that will harm us. More of the drug is taken knowing that it may even cause death. Addicts can get to the place where their desire for the drug is so strong they get discouraged and give up hope to ever be freed. In this state of mind many just resign themselves to being lifetime addicts. And some may indeed intentionally overdose in exhaustion from the struggle.

The temptation to give up a difficult struggle is real. Whether it is a difficult marriage, a challenging class, a disabling illness, an impossible child – the temptation to quit and give up is an obvious option. When you are bombarded with heavy expectations that continue to be unmet there is always a temptation to give up and quit in an effort to remove the stress caused by the expectation.

The temptation to quit when things are hard and difficult is really a natural response to pain. Pain is a sensation that lets you know something is not right and may possibly be harmful for you. Homeostasis is that stable state all organisms and systems tend to seek that is self-preserving and safe. It is that normal relaxed status quo that makes up our comfort zone. When this comfort is disturbed all systems are activated to get things back to normal. This is why it is so hard to go to the gym and to keep exercising when it starts to hurt. That is why criticism often leads to defensiveness. The temptation to quit is often unbearable and irresistible because it feels like you are going to die. In order to keep from quitting one must overcome the urge with contrasting thoughts that say you are not going to die.

The old adage “no pain, no gain!” brings to my mind the picture of someone struggling to lift that last rep on the bench press. You’re not going to die but it sure feels like it. In these situations you must push through through the pain to reach your goals. In this sense, ignoring the pain is mostly a good thing.

But to avoid personal damage, that “you’re not going to die” thought should be truth based. It is very easy for us to slip into denial to convince

ourselves that what we are doing is not going to cause us harm when in actuality it will. Engaging in a forbidden relationship is an example of fooling oneself to think what they are doing will cause no harm. It is painful to resist lustful and infatuated feelings. But the truth that not resisting these emotions will ultimately cause you more harm must prevail. The truth, unfortunately, is often misaligned by popular opinion and behavior. Ignoring it though, leads to the demise of many.

Opioid overdose, the most popular preventable cause of death today, is often an example of being in denial about the truth that this thing will kill you. The pain of withdrawal really is the best option. Instead of the addict saying to themselves “I’ll be alright!”, “I can handle it.” or in despair “This is overwhelming me!”, they should say “No matter how strong my desire for this drug it is not necessary for my survival. This is dangerous behavior that I must stop. I must avoid this behavior no matter how difficult in order to avoid more pain and pain to my loved ones.”

If you are going through a tough time right now let me encourage you to consider the source of that pain and whether the pain means quit doing what you are doing or keep pushing through it. It is very important to get wise counsel when facing this decision. Your counsel can make the difference between failure or success.

Whatever difficulties you are facing, setbacks you have experienced or mistakes you have made, don’t forget that God is with you. He will help you make it through this challenge. Don’t get discouraged. Don’t give up. Keep trying! You may be just one strike away till the tree you have been banging on falls. Remember Thomas Edison’s light bulb worked on the one thousand and first attempt. You can do it!


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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Hot or Not Marriage Quiz

How hot is your marriage? There is no better time to do a check up than right now. Take this VERY short quiz to check in with your spouse. Maybe its time for a little talk about us.

 

 

 


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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When Is It Time To Fight?

Guys boxing

We all long for peace and harmony in our relationships. But there comes a time when we are called to fight. Ecclesiastes 3:8 reminds us that there is a time for war. I suppose when you have a recalcitrant spouse who despite all of your gentle wooings continues down a path that is incompatible with marriage – it’s time to fight! When you have a boss who refuses to listen to reason demanding you to do something that is baseless and without principle – it’s time to fight! When you have a neighbor who is threatening your children – it’s time to fight! When you have an in-law who is trying to break up your marriage – it’s time to fight!

While we recognize that we are not wrestling against flesh and blood and that we must use the armour of God (Ephesians 6:11-12), we must, nevertheless, fight from time to time in our lives. The enemy is at work like a roaring lion seeking to devour us (1 Peter 5:8). That means there comes times in our lives when we either have to run or fight the lion that comes attacking us. Just remember to speak the truth in love (Ephesians 4:14) and use due diligence to fight in a way that doesn’t bring blame upon yourself (Philippians 2:14-15).

Another fact that we must consider when we are fighting for righteousness sake is that God is fighting with us. He promises to protect from every weapon used against us during our fights. (Isaiah 54:17) We can be assured that no matter what we are facing God is with us. (Isaiah 41:10) Don’t allow your enemies intimidation to paralyze you. God says don’t be afraid of them – He has already won the battle. (Jeremiah 1:8; 2 Chronicles 20:15) He will be with you! (Isaiah 43:2) Your enemies should be afraid of you. (Philippians 1:28)

I’m not sure who all this message is for. I just wanted to reiterate that while we desire peace and harmony in our relationships, sometimes we have to fight. Just remember that you belong to God – He is your protector. He is fighting with you and actually the battle is yours because of it. Ultimately the battle belongs to Him. Just be sure you are fighting for the sake of good and not evil. Be sure to use his armour and not your own. And like David when he fought Goliath, remember, no matter how big the enemy with God the victory is yours.


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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Marriage Survey

What’s going on in your marriage?

Staying on the pulse of marriage is my job as a marriage therapist and one who provides seminars and retreats on the subject. Take a moment to add to my database of current issues couples are facing today by completing this short marriage survey.

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Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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What do you practice?

My sister fowarded me this profound video today that was so remarkable I had to share it with my readers. Let me know what you think.


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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Another Year Another Opportunity to Become a Better Lover

Happy New Year from Lifestyle!

You’ve heard it said that what it took to get her it takes to keep her. This is true for her just as much as him. Yet for many couples, one or both fail to exert the energy toward the relationship they did while dating. Think about it – when dating, you’re constantly thinking about each other. You take every opportunity to see one another. You do thoughtful things for each other to let the other know how much you love them. You are drawn to touch one another and express sexual attraction. You talk about how you are feeling in the relationship and otherwise. You talk about your future together. Your conversation is full and engaging as you feel this person is as interested in you as you are in them. You feel safe and protected. They encourage you and demonstrate their belief in you. There is also a lot of grace demonstrated as faults are easily overlooked or downplayed.
For too many couples they are unable to keep this up. Once other life issues come into focus less focus is given to the marriage. Most simply fail to keep their marriage in balance with the rest of their life. Others are emotionally unable to handle the weight of satisfying another person in marriage. One partner has to do all the heavy lifting when it comes to the relationship tasks. A healthy marriage requires two emotionally healthy individuals.
Emotional health consists of healthy thinking about oneself and others. It is the ability, amidst the challenges and stresses of life, to find happiness for oneself and contribute to the happiness of another. Emotional health is being able to admit one’s faults, accept criticism, and make improvements on oneself. Emotional health is the ability to criticise their spouse in a way that is sensitive and effective at producing change. It is the ability to comprehend one’s impact on the others thinking, emotions and behaviors.
Ultimately, I believe emotional health is something learned from one’s parents. If your parents were not emotionally healthy it’s not too late to learn new thought habits. It can really help to have an emotionally  more productive from an emotionally healthy mate. Or from an emotionally healthy surrogate family. Or through therapy or a combination of the above.
A couple must be open to discuss the unhealthy parts of their relationship in order for change to occur. Often these discussions turn into harsh arguments. But couples mustn’t allow the conflict to discourage them from addressing these issues. They should stay calm, present and listen to one another. This is where a Marriage and Family Therapist can be very helpful.

It’s a New Year! This is a great time to assess your marriage. It’s a great time to assess each other. Identify what you want to make better in your marriage this year so you can become a better lover. Some frown on making New Year’s resolutions. I strongly advise for you to do so. Nothing ventured nothing gained. Set goals for yourself and work toward them. They say people who set goals are more productive than those who don’t. Set the goal to become a better lover.

This year I plan to drop a weekly marriage tip and accompanying blog post to encourage couples in their marriage. Click subscribe to get these weekly messages. You can get my tips on Facebook as well.


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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Make a Decision

Are you in a situation you are not happy with? Have you been in that situation for a long time? If so, why haven’t you done something about the situation? Probably because doing something different would place you at risk of facing something you are afraid of – so you have failed to make a decision.

Most of us fail to make tough decisions because of our fears. The sad result is failure. Failure to be in the pursuit of fulfilling our destiny. Very sad indeed.

Fear is based on pessimistic beliefs about what you are worthy of. If good is coming your way you will be more likely to take that leap and make that hard decision. You are confident that you will be OK even if evil befalls you along the way. If you believe bad is coming your way you will be more likely to hold on to what you have because “a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush”. You will be reluctant to step out of your comfort zone for fear you will lose something or be worse off. If you allow the fear of something bad happening to you you will never take a chance to try a new idea, pursue a dream, end or begin a relationship, move to another country. Do you know what it is when you continue doing the same thing expecting a different outcome? How can you expect a better day if you are not willing to take a leap of faith and move in the direction you are leaning?

If you’ve been stressed by a situation for a long time, it is highly possible that you have been allowing your fears to paralyze you. Certainly there are times when we should wait and do nothing. However, if you are not in the pursuit of your dreams your waiting is evidence of your failure to make a decision.

Admittedly sometimes it is very hard to make a decision. All the options are unappealing. But doing nothing isn’t a good option either. The matter worsens and the negative consequences of indecision mount. You need to make a decision! But to do so you have to believe that there will be a positive outcome for you. You need to believe that God is with you. And that He is guiding you.

I recently made a decision to move from my practice location. It was a very difficult decision because there is so much at stake. Getting paid for one. For many months I considered the option but did nothing. But when I finally made a decision I began looking for a new place. And sure enough, God opened the door and has placed me with some wonderful people. Now it hasn’t been pain free. But I believed that God was guiding me in that direction and that He would be with me. Sure enough, God has done what I expected him to do. He has been with me.

If you are in the valley of decision about something I beg you to make a decision believing that God is with you. Don’t predict evil coming your way – predict good. Know that even in the difficulties you will find in the transition the outcome will be in your favor. Read Romans 8:28.

Here’s a quote that has stayed with me many years throughout my life. It has helped me make many a difficult decision. Hopefully it will help you too.

“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way. I have learned a deep respect for one of Goethe’s couplets:

Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it.
Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it!”

― William Hutchison Murray

MAKE A DECISION!

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Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.

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Are You a Hot Head When You Get Angry?

Angry ManI have been engaged in the recent protest that commenced when NFL player Colin Kaepernick took a knee during the national anthem last year. I signed up to help and gotten my kids involved with a very positive mentoring program. The latest talk about all this has to do with our angry president calling for the firing of any player that kneels during the National Anthem. Well today a whole lot of players were kneeling. Well I guess that’s it for the NFL.

All jokes aside. This is no joking matter. If any group in our country suffers we all suffer. We should care about the plight of all people. If not for the grace of God there go I. We should help to relieve suffering. Not be on the side dishing it out.

It just amazed me hearing people defending a flag while demonizing people. The longer I thought about this it dawned on me that this is the human condition. We do the same thing among the people we live and love. In an effort to prove our point we fall short in how we treat our neighbor. We raise our voice in anger and often stoop to using denigrating words which end up destroying the other person. Before you know it words are flying back and forth that are tearing one another down rather than building each other up. Many go way past words to actually inflict physical harm.

How can you say you love me when in anger you hit me? Whether with words, a fist, a scheme or a legislation.

Is being right or having my way more important than the pride and dignity of another person? Shouldn’t we look after the interest of others. The Bible says do unto others as we want them to do unto us. Luke 6:31 We should be careful how we treat others when we are angry. Less we find ourselves learning this lesson the hard way.

We all are guilty of getting angry and disrespecting those we disagree with from time to time. Let us rethink our response to others when in conflict with them. Regardless how passionate you are about an issue, allow the spirit of kindness to temper your retorts and rebukes of others.

If you are a hot and head and have been saying and doing hurtful things to the people you love, don’t hesitate to schedule a treatment planning session with me. I’ll be glad to help you create the new you. One that builds others up rather than tear them down. If you would rather work on your own I found this great course that will walk you though the principles of anger management. Dr. Defoore’s uniquely positive and professional approach make this a great way to put a stop to your angry explosions. Click Here! to learn more.


 

Are you doing the right things in your marriage? Sizzle Mindset: Seven Secrets to Keep the Passion Alive in Your Marriage has been written to encourage couples to focus on what really matters to keep things sizzling hot in their marriage.

Ready to take your marriage to the next level? The How to Stop Arguing and Build a Happy Marriage Course will take you there.