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80/80 Marriage

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Improve Yourself Without Destroying Your Marriage

A woman in distress recently sent us a DM on our 80/80 Instagram account. She told us that her husband is withdrawing. He’s less interested in spending time together. He’s contributing less. And their marriage is suffering.

Why?

That’s where things get interesting. He’s withdrawing because she has made a commitment to self improvement. She’s reading new books, listening to new podcasts, and building new habits to improve her life.

You would think her partner...

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3 Tools for Living Your Highest Priorities in Relationships and Marriage This Summer

habits priorities space stress Jun 02, 2021

The theme of this summer is change.

If you have young kids, you're experiencing the change from the academic calendar to camps, vacations, and unstructured time.

If you've spent the last year holed up in your house, avoiding large crowds, airplanes, and social gatherings, you may be experiencing the change to a more packed social calendar.

With these changes comes an essential question: what are your priorities?

Of course, you don’t have to answer that question. You can just let random...

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Angry With Your Spouse in Marriage? Do These 3 Things

During an event we did with ParentMap last week (click here for the full video), we received a great question, "How do you keep mindfulness alive in the heat of the moment?" someone asked. “It seems much easier when things are calm but it’s needed more when situations are stressful.“

This question reminded us of one of our favorite quotes from the Austrian psychologist Victor Frankl, “Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to...

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3 Tools to Make Marriage and Relationships (More) Effortless

 

Earlier this week, we talked to Anna and Greg McKeown on The Essentialism Podcast. Greg is the author of one of our favorite books, Essentialism, and the newly released book Effortless.

We will let you know when the episode is released. But for now, we wanted to explore a question inspired by our conversation: how can marriage become more effortless?

This is one of the key moves in McKeown‘s new book, a tool that he calls “inversion." In his words, “Instead...

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What to Do When You Can't Understand Each Other in Marriage

“You don’t understand what I’m going through,” Nate said.

“Well, you don’t understand what it’s like for me,” Kaley told Nate.

After two years of marriage, we found ourselves caught in this trap. It's a predicament that so many couples find themselves in, a conflict that boils down to this: you don’t understand me.

For us, an unexpected accident triggered these feelings of misunderstanding. Thirteen years ago, Nate had a serious...

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Try out this mind-blowing marriage thought experiment

conflict habits stress Apr 21, 2021

Have you ever had a single line of text change your life? 

We have. Here’s a line that changed ours from two of our mentors Gay and Katie Hendricks:

“In all times and every way, we are getting exactly what we are committed to getting.”

Take a moment to sit with this idea. 

Take a moment to let it in.

Consider the idea that, somehow, you are committed to getting all the problems and challenges you experience throughout the day.

Most of us recoil at the very...

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The Cure for 'Mental Overload Syndrome' in Marriage and Relationships

habits priorities space stress Mar 31, 2021

It’s 6pm on Friday night. It's been a long week. You sit at the table for family dinner. You’re ready to leave work and the chaos of the week behind -- to relax and, finally, connect with your family.

But, somehow, your mind didn’t get the memo. No, the voice in your head sounds more like a heavily-caffeinated line manager, barking out orders like, “You forgot to send that email, didn't you?" “When are you going to book the reservations for the summer...

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Riding the Big Waves of Emotion
in Marriage, Together

communication death stress Mar 23, 2021

If emotions are like waves, our local community got hit by a tsunami this week.

We like to call Boulder our "souls' home." It’s where we were both born. It’s where we met, during our senior year at Boulder High. It’s where we got married 15 years ago. It’s where we've raised our daughter for the last eight years.

So you can imagine the shock and horror we experienced when we started receiving texts from friends and family members throughout the world asking if we were...

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Do Your Own Inner Work
(The Secret to a Happy Marriage)

habits science space stress Jan 27, 2021

As the authors of The 80/80 Marriage and this newsletter, we have a confession to make. We've talked here about all sorts of tips, strategies, and tools for improving your marriage. But, when it comes down to it, working on yourself might just be the most powerful way to enhance your marriage.

The reason?

Something happens several microseconds before you can even begin to utilize these marriage tools. It’s what the Austrian psychologist and Holocaust survivor Viktor Frankl...

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When Feedback in Marriage Turns from Helpful to Annoying

communication habits stress Jan 20, 2021

If you were to distill down the learnings from the thousands of studies conducted on the psychology of marriage, you're likely to end up with a conclusion like this: Communication is good. Not talking to each other is bad.

But that's only part of the story. Because open communication and feedback in marriage is a lot like eating kale or broccoli in a balanced diet. It's good -- to a point. The moment you start overdoing it, new problems emerge. 

No, we're not talking...

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