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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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Are Your Quarantine Hangover Habits Impacting Your Marriage?

coronavirus habits risk stress Jun 25, 2020

How can you unwind your quarantine hangover habits?

 

Now that stay-at-home orders and quarantines are easing (for some of us), we’ve noticed a pattern, both as individuals and as a couple. It’s a pattern we're calling "the quarantine habit hangover."

Just like a real hangover from a night where you had a little bit too much fun, this hangover starts with an earlier attempt to seek short-term pleasure. But unlike the morning after a wild party, this one is more...

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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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The Power of Creating Physical and Mental Space in Marriage

How can you create space when you're stuck at home together?

 

Over the last couple months, many couples have experienced the disappearance of space. Physical space is gone. We used to have work, business trips, the gym, and all sorts of other events and activities in life that provided this kind of physical space and separation from each other.

But that’s only part of the problem. We are also experiencing the disappearance of mental space. This form of space is less tangible...

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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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