A Successful Marriage

I wish I knew the recipe for a successful marriage.   Although I think the recipe is different for every couple, I have been collecting tips and ideas that may be common to all couples.

480304_10151037275888859_59169761_nThey research by Psychologist John Gottman on relationships shows that it’s okay for couples to fight, and that some disagreement can even be healthy.  The key is there must be enough positive interaction to outweigh the bad, with a ratio of 5 to 1.

This couple shares the secret to surviving 75 years together, “you have to speak each other’s language.”  What they mean is that you have to really listen to what the other person is saying.  Researchers agree that this one behavior is a driving force behind a lot of mental health issues in relationships.  The act of listening helps your partner feel supported, connected, understood and builds them up to be able to support you in return.

A younger man received similar advice from his father, and explains how this helped him understand that Marriage Isn’t for Him…  but rather it’s about making it the best possible experience for your partner.  I love the question from his wife and think that may also be helpful in my personal relationship – “What does it mean to love selflessly?”

Maybe you have figured out how to make your own relationship work.  These people write about the lessons learned during the first year of marriage.   Please share this with people who may benefit from these ideas, especially people living in these areas of high divorce rates.

 

Please vote for the Best Design

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past entry

CANstruction is a cool event where people design something out of canned food.  My company participates in the Boston event, you can see all the photos and vote by the end of Oct 15th.  When looking at the page of photos, click on the photo to see the name of the company and the name of the design to see who you want to vote for.

And go find a CANstruction event in your city…

past entries

past entry

Week of WordPress – A Life Worth Living

P1030553Another plentiful supple of posts, but just as worthwhile as the compassion list.   Thank you to all of these writers who spend the time to share with the world.  Even if it seems like no one is paying attention.  Sorry for the lengthy list, but there were just too many great posts!

Love

Nikkiko celebrates her anniversary with a lovely post about her relationship.  Ahhh, young love.

Better Than Reality shares a few of the 9 Habits or Healthy Relationships.

Kia talks about the loving ourselves, and the things we see with our hearts make life worth living.

Lara quotes John Green “Death Doesn’t Change Us, It Reveals Us.”  She has learned to cope with the loss of her best friend by becoming the person her friend believed she is.

Focus on the Positive

I am amazed and super impressed to find a post written in Pirate Speech (Sept 19 is talk like a pirate day) and also include this week’s search phrase.  Thank you Peekay’s Positive Thoughts for totally making my day!

My Blissful Journey writes about the difficulties when our thoughts take over our minds, I’m soooo guilty of over-analyzing.  I “liked” this post.  Psych+ gives a breakdown on how to reverse this negative thinking.  YOU are worth it.  These 10 tips from FashionAvenue4You also help get us on the right path.

I love this post from kindasad, while dealing with major uncertainty they are able to focus on the positive aspects of their life and “stop looking inwardly and start looking forward.”

Human Struggles

Dance of a Warrior describes dealing with breast cancer.

Narconon details an honest history of drug abuse.

Thought Catalogue describes a trying time of her life, struggling to be everything she thought she could for others.  I also love this post about the best 5 word sentences people might say to each other.  Imagine if we heard one of these sentences from someone each day?

I think we all can relate to Tuggle Struggle’s post about getting fit.  I battle the same challenges trying to manage my weight but loving too many bad foods.

Stan Jones’ Journal includes a moving description of the despair a person can suffer and the way to redemption.  I “liked” this post.

Rohit touches on one of my questions about happiness/sadness.  Can we really achieve happiness or are we programmed to a certain level with life events momentarily fluctuating happiness up and down?  This is a very sad post of a person in need of love. Jbird grew up addicted to negative thinking, resulting in serious consequences.  Lucky to still be alive, she is fighting to create a positive life worth living.

Missy Rogers is an essential for anyone dealing with suicidal thoughts, or bipolar disorder, or mental illness.  I “liked” this post.  Tanner Snider shares a post from Reinier Krol who also talks about depression.

Miss Fit has the perfect point of view on dealing with difficulties: There will always be a tomorrow until God wants you back, so make the most of it.  I “liked” this post.

Nancy Schimelpfening has a moving post about the right to suicide.  The attention on Stephen Hawking and his recent comments on the subject present an interesting juxtaposition.  For someone who has lost so much physically, but has maintained so much value and purpose in life, we have a lot to learn from him about taking the hand we’re dealt and making a life worth living.

How many of us associate our own value with the value of money?  White Apron is bluntly honest about the trap she fell into, and how it led to a destructive lifestyle.  What’s amazing, is her courage to confront the demons and pull herself out of the trap.

I never heard of Boarderline Personality Disorder before finding chloenoble89’s blog.

Surround Yourself with Amazing People

Sara Secrets lists several addicting feelings, feelings that make you feel good, and says that people who “genuinely listen” make life worth living.  I “liked” this post.

Epyk Health & Living shares that the people who make us smile are worth more attention and acknowledgement than we typically show.  So let’s stop wasting time arguing with those who do not enrich our lives.

Le has missed her best friend, a person brightens up her world.

Farah Colette writes this personal thank you to a friend Meryle.  She does this in order to boost her happiness level.  Studies have shown that one of the ways to be happier is to express your gratitude to people in your life, and a little secret about money.

Passion

Grow Up Novelist just started the blog to become a writer, after retiring from teaching it’s time for a new profession.  I wonder how long he can keep the secret from (his?) wife.

Filmeware presents the idea that art is an essential part of life, citing a study about rats activating their pleasure centers more than wanting food, it makes me wonder …  are artists all people who are addicted to pleasure?  If you like art, check out the paintings by Charlie Isoe on Mutant Space’s blog.  Or hear new live recording of Marc Broussard.

Labyrinth of a Psychotic Mind provides a great example of creating a life worth living.

Although we may feel sadness for Food (Love) tography after losing their grandmother yesterday, this post shows the joy of their relationship and we are happy for their strong connection and the time they shared together.  We’re also reminded “Spend time with our grandparents.”

Lauram Hennings writes a post that I identify well with.  What are the challenges with having a passionate personality?

#97 on the list of things every 20-something should know: Passion Makes Life Worth Living.  Plenty of people copied this list on their blogs, only some of them cited the source.  Adele explains how the list is overly sexist and a complete waste of time. Other disapproving bloggers: Angry Birds, My Food is Problematic, and Let It Be.

Tom Odell finds a life worth living in music, and I have to agree.

Is Lisa’s idea that creativity and play provides energy for the soul, true for everyone?

Connection to Others

At the Drop of a Mat expresses their gratitude for the world around them, and for all of those who read the blog.

I feel a strong connection to this post by Oh the Places You Will Go, why do we think there is “The One” person, a soul mate?  I too am looking for friendships, adventure, and memories.  I “liked” this post.

Only Sometimes Clever shares the lovestory of her stepfather and mother, while coping with the recent loss of each.  I love hearing about the inner workings of a successful relationship, thank you for sharing.

The Merna describes how serving others can bring us satisfaction and fulfillment as well.

Musings and Little Rants wonders, what prevents us from telling people we love how we feel.  So he writes a letter to a friend.

Adriana Miele copes with the loss of a close friend by finding new connections with people.

Even Crazy Dreams Come True gives the recipe for creating a life worth living.  I “liked” this post.

Danielle shares the lesson of learning to love, through the story of getting engaged and then calling of the wedding.

Rebecca Straley writes the post I might write on this topic, what makes life worth living, our connection to others and how we give and help those around us.

Julie Boyd made a stop motion video for the Australian group R U Ok.  Her post describes the video making process, and gives a little background on why this group is encouraging friends and family to stop and ask each other R U Ok?

I love how Stories, Thoughts, Ramblings finds the kindness of others that makes life worth living.  I “liked” this post.

Awareness in Action reconnects with past friends on Facebook.

Parenting

The Tao of Pig Pen humorously details his experience with the IVF process of procreation.

Parenting Uninspired writes a detailed apology to her 18 month old daughter, the struggles of life are just beginning and the forecast is full of future battles.

Many different blogs reference a UNESCO report on education.  Stephanie Smith gives us the breakdown of the report content.

Elizabeth Gomart gives some tips on how to organize life at home to accommodate the busy activity levels of families these days.

For fataltoprejudice, a visit to Lake Come makes life worth living.

Lovely World circles through the discussion, does happiness bring peace, or is peace needed in order to gain happiness?  I plan to appreciate each as they come along.

Philosophical – The Unexamined Life is Not Worth Living – Socrates

Sarah Halford gives a detailed explanation of Socratic Self-Examination and Philosophy Reaction Blog explains the three groups of dialogues of Plato and Socrates.

Three Cats and a Bunny describes why sometimes we have to stop examining life.  Congratulations on your first Triathalon!

If I was more philosophical, I could attempt to summarize this political letter of Guo Yushan, head of the Transition Institute in China which has now been banned.

The Existential Notebook is written in response to an existentialism class.  Again, another subject I do not understand well enough to summarize for you.  But I appreciate the movie recommendation, I love Samual L. Jackson characters and I’m curious to see what this play is all about.

Art: Music, Poetry, Film

Paddy Noble includes the poem I’m here!

The Musical Poet writes a poem about the things that make life worth living.

In the Moment made a cool stop-motion video for the song Paradise by Cold Play.

Calvin J Forbes starts of with a really cool picture, well a combination of 3 pictures and describes how he created it on his iPhone.  Then the post goes on to talk about how Jesus shows us a life worth living.

A beautiful poem shared by zealouso.

I have not seen the movie Warm Bodies, but Inthekan suggests that this movie presents a serious and comical analysis of what makes life worth living.

Miscellaneous

The Sceptical Technologist writes about what life may be like when we have human robots.  “Shallow uniformity is not an accident but a consequence of what Marxists optimistically call late capitalism.”  ~Nick Cohen, Cruel Britannia  I “liked” this post.

This Fitness Blog quotes Dean Karnazes to teach us how the value of pushing ourselves beyond our comfort zone.

Olivoancea has a collection of 100 fascinating quotes about life.

Cara Will Take Over has a great post about the risk of pushing ourselves too much, and maybe the answer is to keep things simple.  I love her writing throughout the post, she takes you along her train of thought, although it was a little distracting with the number of photo interruptions.  This post did not have a “like” option.

Sermons and Studies talks about serving God to make life worth living. A Woman Like Me includes getting to know Jesus in her ideal life.  Through This Window’s Eyes describes how knowing God has helped her, and includes a lovely poem.  Inkyfoot loves books, and among the recommendations in this post is one by Pastor Joseph Prince

Griffen Admin describes how reminding ourselves of al the good and joy in our life, we’ll be happy and not feel like we’re really working.

What is the Significance of Life includes profiles of three famous people, Adolf Hitler, Mohandas “Mahatma” Gandhi, and Jesus Christ.  I don’t know the reason for these three being grouped together as there is no analysis, but there are great detailed biographies of the last two characters.

Self-Connection Coaching talks about thinking big and small, and how growing too fast can be destructive.

Who are the Superhero’s living around you?  Geog 30 wonders if it’s better to be a good  person, or perform good deeds.

Brains Before Beauty reminds us that hatred is taught.

Are you optimistic about the future?  Management Ink talks about finding happiness in a sustainable world and links to an article from the World Future Review.

Lots of Believing reminds up to Stop Wishing.  Start Doing.  We all find it easy to criticize others, and sometimes we need to look inward.  Put some effort into those things we keep wishing we could accomplish.  I “liked” this post.

YOLO – my favorite phrase since it became popular last year.  It means, you only live once.  Basically, it reminds me to enjoy everyday, and not put off until tomorrow that which I can do today.  Planetvictorhui writes their first blog post of similar concepts, Congratulations on the new blog!

How many people think it’s easy to be beautiful?  The Cultivation of Beauty explains her personal experience and struggles with beauty.  I “liked” this post.

From Muddy Waters is learning to love Peruvian food while volunteering long term in that country.

The Wisdom of Music

I just discovered this song by Sheryl Crow and it has so much meaning to me right now.  Watching events in Syria, Egypt, Pakistan, Kenya, …  also What It’s Like by Everclear has a a lot of meaning for me these days.

Lyrics to Redemption Day

I’ve wept for those who suffer long
But how I weep for those who’ve gone
In rooms of grief and questioned wrong
But keep on killing

It’s in the soul to feel such things
But weak to watch without speaking
Oh, what mercy sadness brings
If God be willing

There is a train that’s heading straight
To heaven’s gate, to heaven’s gate
And on the way child and man and woman wait
Watch and wait for redemption day

Fire rages in the streets
And swallows everything it meets
It’s just an image often seen on television

Come leaders, come you men of great
Let us hear you pontificate
Your many virtues laid to waste
And we aren’t listening

There is a train that’s heading straight
To heaven’s gate, to heaven’s gate
And on the way child and man and woman wait
Watch and wait for redemption day

What do you have for us today?
Throw us a bone but save the plate
Oh, why we waited ’til so late
Was there no oil to excavate?

No riches in trade for the fate
Of every person who died in hate
Throw us a bone, you men of great

There is a train that’s heading straight
To heaven’s gate, to heaven’s gate
And on the way child and man and woman wait
Watch and wait for redemption day

It’s buried in the countryside
Exploding in the shells at night
It’s everywhere a baby cries
Freedom, freedom, freedom

Gotta love this cover of Imagine by John Lennon

Week of WordPress – Compassion

Eva Mendes with the children in Sierra Leone

Eva Mendes with the children in Sierra Leone

For a Psychology assignment, I have reviewed posts with the Tag Compassion and summarized my favorites here.  I do not include posts relating to animal cruelty, if you want your heart broken too, you’ll have to do that research on your own.  Next week, I think I’ll look for a less popular Tag to review.  One of my classmates also wrote about their day of compassion.

A Window of Wisdom put words to my thoughts before I was able to.  I’m so glad to have found this quote reminding us that we must be careful not to judge people by the image they want us to believe.  I ‘liked’ this post.

Whasenk teaches us about Compassion Meditation and gives some research on the study of compassionate behavior.  “If you want to make others happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.” Dalai Lama  There is no ‘like’ function for this blog.  Through the Vortex gets us wondering if acts of compassion can have a neurological change to our brains. Abigail talks about her view of living compassionately, and the profound effect it can have on ourselves.  I ‘liked’ this post.

siahpetermann challenges us to find someone we can show love to, just like my assignment.

Japanese Words of Wisdom explains Japanese proverbs and includes some experiences of why the proverb has personal meaning.  I really like the hands on application of the proverbs to real life.  This particular entry is about sharing life and travels with a companion.  I’m now following this blog.

So I’m an introvert!  Philosophical Diva explains one way to determine if you are an introvert, and that understanding leads her to think about the larger community we’re a part of.  I ‘liked’ this post.

fury’sfrenzy creates a compassionate bucket list.

Patrick points out that we easily find fault with others and should be more compassionate to their point of view, similar to the justifications we provide in defense of our own behavior.

So This Is Now warns us, the video posted “How to make stress your friend” will change your life if watched.  I can confirm this is true, and you’ll how it relates to compassion around 12 minutes into the video.  Don’t miss the extra bit after the first applause.

Definition

Princess Deficit shares her personal experience with learning to be compassionate, inadvertently giving a pretty good definition of compassion.

Work Collaboratively talks about nonviolent communication and how we might apply it to our every day lives.  I think this post nicely summarizes one of the social challenges we have today, western society has moved beyond violence as a means of reforming behavior.  Now we’re challenged by how to apply that new understanding to our foreign policy with Syria.  I’m now following this blog.

The Wren Project discusses forgiveness from many points of view and many different religions, which leaves us wondering, is forgiveness necessary to be compassionate?

Octopus Dance gives an important point of compassion that is often overlooked.  By sharing our difficulties with others, and making them feel as if they are not alone in their experiences, this can improve relationships.

Rose with Thorns writes a moving recount of her struggle with an eating disorder and autism/aspergers, but she teaches us how Comparison kills our ability to be Compassionate, and if we’re conscious to maintain compassion we might eliminate the comparisons.

Bible Study brings up a good point, how does Compassion differ from Sympathy?  How does a Jewish point of view differ, read For the Love of Small Things.

Mark Block tells of the shorted bible verse “Jesus wept.” Reminding us that being emotional is part of being compassionate.  Maybe some of you can have one without the other.

Helping those who Suffer

Who would have thought that reading about a person’s battle with a brain tumor could be so beautiful.  Grey Matter Life writes this post in gratitude for the compassion of the MRI technician which helps bring strength to their dreadful battle with the tumor.

Nexus pays homage to Jane Addams, referred to as the “mother of social service.”

Charlie writes a detailed description of the benefits we might experience when incorporating compassion in to our daily lives.  One of the quotes convinced me to re-blog this post: “A little kindness from person to person is better than a vast love for all humankind.”

Through personal experience with ICU patients, Reflective Nursing shares how being compassionate may be as simple as listening to others and making sure they feel listened to.

Dennis Cardiff writes about meeting a homeless woman on the street, getting to know her story, and sharing a coffee and sandwich.  He also writes the every-day stories of his homeless community on the blog Gotta Find a Home

Be Understanding

Eve Livingston writes a detailed post describing one act of compassion towards people who are hoarders.

The Fuerst Shall be Last writes about this TV show Breaking Bad and how it’s shown insight into the lives of drug dealers and violent criminals, inciting compassion for the way real people make decisions between right and wrong.

Be Grateful

Heidi reminds us to be grateful for the wonderful life we are enjoying.

Untamed Slave writes a lengthy list of what they are grateful for.  I ‘liked’ this post.

Love Yourself and Take Care of Yourself

Banana Map and Indigo Voice 82 share a quote from the Dalai Lama on the importance of self-compassion, while Path Write quotes the Dalai Lama’s message that compassion is the key to a happier world.

Rebecca writes about learning from our mistakes and forgiving ourselves.  This is a reoccurring lesson for me.  The idea that failure is not bad, it’s a learning opportunity.  She goes on to give suggested meditations for healing these types of wounds.  And Jeannie has an unexpected healing and finds ways to meditate during routine chores.  I agree, how can we hurry through life’s experiences and expect to sit quietly meditating to calm our overactive minds?

This VasqueszBlog courageously writes about recovering from Bulimia.  This post is another reminder to take care of ourselves and talks about the guilt and shame that might be prevent us from forgiving ourselves.

Inspired Woman Us gives a compelling reason for self-compassion.  Each day presents many instances of degradation, it could be helpful to balance this out with acts of self-compassion.

Sober Boots descries how self-compassion is affecting her mood and life and how she believes God’s compassion has given her the courage to practice self-compassion.  Beauty in the Design also finds solace in God’s continual compassion.

Helping Those In Need

Loitering with Content quotes Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  “True compassion is more than flinging a coin to a beggar; it is not haphazard and superficial. It comes to see that an edifice that produces beggars needs restructuring.”

Words that Serve is documenting compassion in action.  This post documents the 16th week of performing good deeds for others, and the good deeds received from others.  What I love about this post, is the importance of recognizing compassion from others.  Although it’s most important to share compassion, the benefits are maximized when the recipient is consciously aware of receiving it.  This act of tracking your good deeds reminds me of the 29 Gifts experience which is documented in a book and a website.  I ‘liked’ this post.

This Hoosier Fan recaps a story showing us how people have such individual needs, and sometimes the most compassionate act can be a little unusual.  Just a Thought relays a bible story where Jesus provides the healing compassion needed most by an ill woman.  Paulette Motzko recounts an opportunity to help someone in need get a decent lunch.

Eavesdropping on Conversations shares a story of compassion for school teachers and how one person with a good idea must take it upon themselves to baking cookies in support of these teachers.  I ‘liked’ this post.

Mymoena gives us an Islamic poem about life and helping each other.

Paper Gifts for Stefany describes the Barton family who lost their home in a fire, losing everything they had.  So they moved to the poorest country in the world to help Ugandan’s make a better life for themselves.

The Kindness Blog writes how a shoeshiner becomes a hero by donating $200 k in tips to a children’s hospital.  I am already following this blog.

Tracy and Drew shows how you might find just the right dose of compassion in the most unlikely place.

Giving Gratefully highlights the work of the work of a group Compassion, which a is Christian organization sponsoring children around the world.  This post links to several other authors who have written a letter to their younger self, written in response to a suggestion by the Compassion Blog.

karios catcher is also a supporter of the Compassion group, and write about the Kenyan girl she is sponsoring.  It’s funny how when we do something for others, it has such a profound effect on ourselves.

Sawyer Products shows photos from distributing water filters in Togo, Africa.  This groups works with the families support by Compassion.

H. Arnett reminds us that we often become desensitized, calloused in our hearts, to the needs of others and the impact we might have.

Love

shunyata has an Islamic poem about love.

You might also fall in love, just a little, with Tony’s partner after reading this poem.

Just like You and Me describes what’s it’s like to have three 30 something friends battling cancer, and a reminder that we can’t control everything in life.  I ‘liked’ this post.

Compassion Summary

There is a lot of encouragement to be compassionate and love each other, like this post from A Crazy Lady.  I did find a few people reporting how they have shared compassion with others, including this teacher who took her 3rd grade class to Uganda.  Some believe that Practical Compassion are any act of avoiding harm to other people, animals, or the environment, which leads to my final inquiry.  This 22 minute video gives a lengthy description of what it means to live compassionately.

Is Compassion an Act or a Point of View?  I think compassion is the act of easing someone’s suffering weather is be loneliness, hunger, discrimination … now to create my day of compassion.

Spread Kindness

I absolutely love this post, I think I’ll post in my bathroom to read at the start and end of every day.

poet4justicedotwordpressdotcom

15 Ways to Spread Kindness in Your World Today by HENRIK EDBERG

1. Express your gratitude.

Think about what you can be grateful for about someone in your life. Maybe that he is a good listener, that he often is quick to help out or that he always adds great songs to a Spotify playlist. Or simply that he held up the door for you.

Then express that gratitude in a simple “thank you!” or in a sincere sentence or two.

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2. Replace the judgments.

No one likes to be judged. And the more you judge other people the more you tend to judge yourself. So despite the temporary benefit of deriving pleasure from the judgments it is not a good or smart long-term habit.

3. Replace the unconstructive criticism.

Try encouragement instead of excessive criticism. It helps people to both raise their self-esteem and to do a better job…

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When to say “I Love You”

Love is a perception, and we all perceive things differently.  And since English uses only 1 word for so many emotions and different kinds of love, to me that makes the meaning of love very fluid.  Since people interpret love in the way that works for them at the moment, what do they actually mean when they say – “I Love You”

bigstockphoto_rose_heart_25472772Generally I think love is a combination of the following, depending on the situation: happiness/pleasure, lust, devotion, care, acceptance, tolerance, respect, admiration, excitement, comfort …