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80/80 Marriage

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These Outsiders Can Make Marriage Impossible

What do you do when someone outside your marriage disrupts the system?

 

One of the most profound marriage insights comes down to some simple math. There’s the two of you: you and your partner. And then there are your “thirds.”

Now, this idea alone isn’t groundbreaking. It’s not going to radically change your life.

But here’s something that might. Marriage therapist and author Stan Takin argues that these “thirds” pose one of the greatest...

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The Best Way to Change Your Partner (Hint: It's All About You)

conflict fairness stress Jun 10, 2020

What's the best way to change your partner?

 

At some point along the journey of marriage, we've all had this thought. We’ve all contemplated thoughts like: if only my partner appreciated me more or loved me more or listened better, things would be different.

It's a thought based on an assumption, the assumption that change starts, not from within, but when our partner finally gets it together. 

The problem? You don't control your partner. If you did, your efforts to...

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Non-Complementary Behavior: A Radical Tool for Ending Arguments in Marriage

conflict fairness stress Jun 04, 2020

 

Can you end an argument in 30 seconds or less?

 

One of the unique quirks of the human brain is its propensity to mirror the states of others. When we see an eight week old baby smile, we can’t help but smile. It just sort of happens.

But the opposite is also true. When we experience our partner's irritation and anger, we get pissed. We feel an instant surge of irritation and anger. It just sort of happens. 

Psychologists have a name for this phenomenon. They call it...

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How much risk is too much during the coronavirus pandemic?

conflict coronavirus risk May 14, 2020

How can you resolve disagreements about risk?

Couples have always had to navigate differences in risk. And yet, over the last couple months, the potential for explosive conflict around risk has grown exponentially. Because now, everything is risky.

Should you get a haircut? Or is that taking on too much risk?

Should you get a check up at the doctor? Is going or not going the bigger risk?

Should you let your child play with a friend? Or will that turn your kid into a disease vector?

If you're...

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How to Overcome Resentment in Marriage

conflict fairness May 12, 2020

What's the fastest way to dissolve resentment?

 

We interviewed over 100 people about their marriages for our book The 80/80 Marriage. One of the things we discovered is that resentment might just be the primary emotion in modern married life.

It’s that bitter sting that lands when your partner makes plans without asking you. It's the irritation you feel when you're doing more, caring more, or trying harder (at least from your point of view).

What's the source of...

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How to Divide Up Chores and Housework When Crisis Hits

Who does what during a pandemic?

 

Most working couples have tasted the amazing benefits of outsourcing. Things like having a school with administrators and teachers where you can send your kids. Having a cleaner who comes by every once in a while. Or having a babysitter who watches the little ones when you go out on date night.

Outsourcing is often the ultimate antidote to resentment and fights over what is or isn’t fair. So it follows that the temporary death of outsourcing...

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How to End Conflict in Marriage by Not Being So Serious

conflict stress May 12, 2020

How can you stop being so stressed and serious all the time?

 

Quarantine sucks. Watching the economy and the stock market tumble is unnerving. And hearing about the deaths of thousands of people each day can feel almost unbearable.

This steady stream of horrifying news and information results in a state we like to call “super serious mode." It’s a state that goes hand-in-hand with feeling stressed, uncertain, and totally out of control.

In this state, you might notice that...

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