When to NOT Discuss Things With Your Spouse

Unhappy CoupleYou are supposed to communicate together as husband and wife. And that’s a good thing. But there is a difference between communicating and dumping.

The purpose of communication is understanding, connection, and intimacy. (It’s been said that the organ of intimacy is the ear!) Hiding thoughts, fears, hopes, memories, problems, or anything else from your spouse builds a wall between you that can be difficult to tear down.

However, some women (and a few men) use the principle of communication to unload on their spouse. They use their spouse as a dumping ground for every thought and feeling that comes along. That may place a burden on your spouse that is not their place to carry.

Your spouse is not your pastor, your therapist, your 12-step sponsor, or your doctor. God often uses marriage partners to bring much healing to one another, but it’s not your spouse’s primary responsibility to fix you. Expecting them to do so is a form of manipulation and control.

And that drives people apart.

Here’s what the difference looks like:

Communication lets your spouse see and touch the difficult things in your heart. Dumping tries to force your spouse to carry what is yours to own.

Continue reading...

7 Sure Ways to Stay Young(er)

Senior WomenShe was crying in my office. She had just been told the results of her hormonal evaluation, and it wasn’t what she wanted to hear. It was unlikely she would ever get pregnant again, at least not in the natural way. In human terms, her ovaries were just too old.

Yes, you are only as old as you feel! But none of us enjoys having to face grey hair, skin wrinkles, loss of strength, or “senior moments.” People have been searching for the fountain of youth for centuries.

While Ponce de Leon may have failed to find the fountain of youth in his Florida journeys, your own fountain of youth may be much closer to home. There are many things you can do that either speed up or slow down the aging process. No, none of them will make you live forever. But they will make a big difference in how your body, mind, and soul look and feel.

Here are seven ways to stay young:

Continue reading...
Sleep – Good for Your Body, Mind, and Soul

Sleep – Good for Your Body, Mind, and Soul

I’ve never especially liked going to bed. There’s so much to do, so much to enjoy, so much to watch or listen to, so much to talk about. Sleep seems like such a waste of time. With a busy life and medical practice I think my husband gets tired of telling me I need to get some sleep!

We all know that our human bodies need sleep and rest. There is a huge amount of research now indicating that if you want to live a long and healthy life, you need 7-8 hours of sleep a night. Chronic lack of sleep leads to all kinds of physical problems.

But that’s not all. Your mind, emotions, ability to handle stress, and how you relate to your children, spouse, God, and others are all affected. How you treat your body in this area does impact you and those around you in many ways.

Consider these benefits of getting appropriate sleep:

Continue reading...

5 Things You Don’t Want To Regret

Sad WomanIt’s not the years in your life that count: it’s the life in your years that’s important.

You may have heard that idea in different forms. One of the saddest of all reflections is, “What might have been?!” There are plenty of things in life you don’t have control over. But how tragic to get to the end and realize that YOU were the reason you didn’t experience more, love more, give more.

Don’t let these regrets happen to you:

  1. Time with loved ones. Busyness can so easily take over the time you should invest with those who are most important. Your children are only small once. After your parents are dead your time with them is gone forever. Opportunities for evenings, weekends, or vacations with your spouse may never be there again. Treasure the people close to you while you can.
  2. Neglecting your health.
Continue reading...

3 Things that are NOT Small Stuff

Funeral FlowersRule Number 1: Don’t sweat the small stuff.

Rule Number 2: It’s ALL small stuff!

There are very few things in life worthy of being excluded from the “small stuff.”

We were reminded of this today when we heard from a friend of ours that his father had passed away this morning. For Peter, his life on this earth is over. For Steve, the long waits at the hospital, the fighting to arrange insurance coverage, the conversations with doctors, the late-night trips to the ER, the frustrations with family members over details – all that is over too. And suddenly all those pesky problems certainly feel like comparatively “small stuff!”

Steve had a chance to tell his father Goodbye. He knows his father was right with God, and he has a strong faith himself. None of that lessens the pain, but it does limit the regrets. And for the rest of us, seeing someone come to the end of life here does help put everything else in perspective.

In the grand scheme of things, what’s NOT small stuff? A few suggestions:

Continue reading...