Marriage Tip: Trash Talk

Keep from trashing your spouse.

Trash Talk

Trashing your spouse to someone damages your marriage in several ways.

  • What we feed grows.  Trash talk reinforces the negatives in your mind making you feel worse about your spouse and marriage.
  • It alters memories.  Research shows that the more a marriage spirals down, the more we select bad memories.  Eventually, bad memories dominate and reinforce the idea our marriage is doomed.
  • It adds agreement to your thoughts.  Power of agreement is strong and telling someone about your spouse’s bad points causes that person to agree with you.
  • It makes a new enemy for your spouse exposing him/her to more criticism.
  • It sows a destiny. Thoughts become words, words become actions that create destiny.
  • You no longer protect your marriage, you open it to criticism.
  • You reinforce faith that your marriage will crash.
  • Finally, you lose respect in the eyes of others.

Think on positive qualities of your spouse. If you need help it is fine to say, “Our marriage needs work,”  but you need not criticize your spouse. Get help from someone capable.  If you must talk to a friend to vent, be general, but refrain from dissing your spouse. Write us.

The Secret of Rebuilding

Need a fix?

Need a fix?

Concrete Castle

How do successful couples stay successful? When storms strike, they rebuild. They switch to rebuild mode to fix their marriage castle.

Ever build a sand castle? You hug the shoreline to pack the sand, but the edge of your art work flirts with danger.  Suddenly, a wave hits.  What do you do?  You scream and rebuild.  It is the only way to preserve the masterpiece on which you’ve spent so much energy.  Do the same with your marriage.

Unsuccessful couples do nothing in between challenges.  Each successive challenge erodes more of their castle erasing all definition.  Soon they stare at a mound that once was their beautiful marriage. Consider rebuilding to strengthen your marriage. Here’s how.

When a challenge hits employ forgiveness. Don’t say “sorry” say “forgive me” and listen. Next, find humor for the challenge, learn to laugh. Here is a good tip: List the positive qualities of your spouse and later thank him/her for them. While writing the list, work on respect and admiration.  Think of what works in your relationship and go for those things.  If walks work, take walk.  If sex makes you feel close, well.

During the good times do not accept cruise control.  Think of each other, send emails, and call.  Focus on positive aspects, reinforce things you like. During a challenge, react with sympathy instead of a defensive posture. Always rebuild so when the next wave rushes in you are stronger.

By rebuilding you strengthen your marriage and tighten romance.  Eventually your sandcastle strengthens to a concrete sanctuary against which the storms have little effect.

Here are exercises to help.   If your spouse will not play, pick one and just begin talking to him/her about it.

  • Reminisce about how you met.
  • Tell each other two wonderful qualities you admire.
  • Discuss one thing that works in your marriage.
  • Tell each other one physical feature you admire.
  • Retell a wonderful marriage memory.
  • Discuss favorite things: music, food, movies, outings, etc.