Surviving Separation
150 150 Lee H. Baucom, Ph.D.

Surviving marital separation.If you have listened long to my podcasts, you probably know that I am not big on separations.  In fact, unless there is some physical risk, I discourage separations.  I think they run counter to working on a relationship.

But. . . sometimes, a separation is unavoidable.

So, how do you survive a separation, especially if you didn’t want the separation (or if you did, and now see it was a mistake)?

I’ll tell you the reasons why I don’t like separations.  There are 3 reasons.

There are some tasks that need to happen, both on individual and couple levels, during the separation.  You can take on 3 tasks for yourself.

Listen in to the podcast for how to survive a separation.

RESOURCES ON SEPARATION:
Separation Podcast
Separation Article
No Chasing

 

Doing The Right Thing vs. Doing It Right
150 150 Lee H. Baucom, Ph.D.

Doing what's right, the right way.Today, I tackle a pretty sensitive subject:  the difference between “Doing The Right Thing” and “Doing It Right.”

Let me be very clear:  I believe that working to save your marriage is heroic work.  It is pretty counter-cultural in our world of “throw away.”  We do it with stuff and relationships.  And “No Fault Divorce” (better called “Unilateral Divorce”) has made it simple.  Or at least it has been made to seem simple.

I also believe that working on saving a marriage is courageous.  It’s pretty scary to be in the middle of a crisis, and to CHOOSE to work on the relationship.  That is the definition of courage — feeling fear, and choosing to act, anyway.

Sometimes, I watch people who want to do the right thing, but they don’t do it the right way.  “No Contact Rule,” Reverse Psychology, hypnosis, spells. . . you name it, I see people try it.

And I watch their efforts fail.  Their desire to change things is absolutely there.  But the approach is in trouble.  It kind of reminds me of deciding to diet, then choosing an ice-cream diet.  Probably not going to get the results you want (although it does sound delicious).

Starting with the best of intentions is a great beginning point.  But it has to be followed with an approach that works.

Let’s talk about Doing The Right Thing, AND Doing It The Right Way.

 

RELATED RESOURCES
No Contact Rule Is Crap
So Is Reverse Psychology
And Shortcuts Aren’t
And “Try Anything” Fails
But This System Works

Desire Versus Decide
150 150 Lee H. Baucom, Ph.D.

Saving your marriage?  Don't focus on desire.  Decide.“I just don’t feel it,” two people told me this week.  One didn’t feel like following the plan to save their marriage.  The other didn’t feel it for the spouse.  One wanted to save the marriage.  The other didn’t.  Both were motivated by desire (or lack of desire).

Here’s the problem:  desire is fickle.  To say the least.  Even in a strong marriage, desire for each other can ebb and flow.  And even the best of us struggle with the desire to do things:  exercise, eat well, clean the house, go to work, etc., etc., etc.

Which is the problem with letting “desire” be the measurement of taking action.

Is there another way?

Glad you asked!  Yes there is.

It’s a word I particularly like.  Decide.

“Desire” is based in an emotional state.  “Decide” is a rational choice.  It supercedes an emotional state. And it generally is the only reliable way we make progress in any area of life.  If I wait for desire, the chances over time of desire showing up — they just keep going down.  If I decide to act, I take back full responsibility for my actions.

Has desire been your motivation and measurement (or lack of motivation and measurement)?  If so, let’s discuss the alternative.

RELATED RESOURCE
Go Pro
Have A Plan
Why It Matters
System To Follow

One Question That Can Destroy Any Marriage
150 150 Lee H. Baucom, Ph.D.

There is one question that can ruin any marriage. . . .There are some questions that can help a marriage.  There are many thoughts that can improve your relationship.

But there is one question that will suck the life right out of a marriage.  And it is a question you don’t even need to ask another person, in order to do the damage.

In fact, another person won’t make a difference for this question.  It is a question lurking within you.

Oh, and did I mention that another question, similar to this question — but very different in direction — can help restore a relationship?

Change the question, change the frame.  Get stuck on the question, get stuck in a downward spiral.  It’s up to you. . . once you know the question.

Which one are you asking?

(Need some help with your marriage?  Grab my Save The Marriage System RIGHT HERE.)

Rejection or Protection? Perception. . .
150 150 Lee H. Baucom, Ph.D.

You are working on your marriage.  You reach out toward your spouse. . . only to feel rejected.

After that stops you in your tracks.  You start doubting yourself, your efforts, your plan. . . .

STOP.

What if your spouse was not really intending to reject you?

What if something else was going on?

What if I told you that almost always (I would say “always,” but then someone would work hard to prove me wrong), it is not really an attempt to reject.

It is really an attempt to protect.

Not “protect you.”  But “protect themselves.”

What?  You say, “They don’t need to protect themselves!”

But that doesn’t mean they don’t feel the need to protect themselves.

Perceptions.

They really get us in trouble.  You feel it as rejection.  It was meant for protection.  The problem is, your perception could throw you off, cause you to pull up, abandon your plan, and wallow in pain.

Or you could understand it from your spouse’s perception. . . .

Listen to the podcast below.

RELATED RESOURCES
Why Connection Matters
Connection and Perception
Dealing With Pushback
System to Save Your Marriage

How Limiting Beliefs Limit Your Marriage
150 150 Lee H. Baucom, Ph.D.

Are limiting beliefs limiting your marriage?  Yep.  Listen to the podcast to learn more.It almost seems redundant, doesn’t it?  If you have limited beliefs, they could limit something — say, for example, your marriage.

I say IF you have limited beliefs.

Full disclosure:  We ALL have limited beliefs that are limiting us.  We ALL have blind spots, assumptions, even untrue beliefs.  We just don’t notice them.  And we pay a price for that.

Especially since we usually fail to notice or address these limiting beliefs.

Do you think your limiting beliefs MIGHT be limiting your life and your marriage?

I’m betting that is the case, since it is true for all of us.

Here’s the good news:  you can change your limiting beliefs.  Once you know what they are.  And decide to change them

Listen below for this week’s podcast.

(Here is the resource that has a whole section on changing limiting beliefs — I wrote it.  FIND IT RIGHT HERE.)

“I Won’t If My Spouse Won’t” — And You Are Stuck
150 150 Lee H. Baucom, Ph.D.

"I won't if my spouse won't" and other ways to be stuck.A few days ago, that was what he said on the phone, “I won’t work on my marriage if my spouse won’t.” Now note:  he had contacted me — I help people save their marriage.

“Huh?” I uttered.

“Look,” he said, “if you think I am going to start working on my marriage by myself, that ain’t gonna happen.  Why don’t you convince my spouse to work on the marriage?”

“First,” I replied, “I am not in the market of trying to get someone to do something, neither you nor your wife.  Second, if you are always waiting for your spouse to do something before you do, you are probably very stuck.  Could I suggest something?”

“Probably not, but go ahead and try,” he said.

“Okay,” I pushed on, “what if you were to start working on things?  What if you were to just start moving in the direction of your marriage, seeing if you could improve the connection?  Is it possible that you could START the process, and your spouse could JOIN the process?”

“Maybe….”

Good enough for me.

You see, this is one of those stuck points of marriage.  If one spouse is refusing to do something until the other does something — and the spouse is doing the same thing — the marriage is frozen in place.  Stuck.

Someone has to shift.  Someone has to blink.  Someone has to be willing to change something in order for something to change.

Let’s talk about this stuck point — and how to get beyond it — in this week’s podcast (below).

(I mention a resource in the podcast.  FIND IT RIGHT HERE.)

When Do You Need Coaching?
150 150 Lee H. Baucom, Ph.D.

3 times coaching can be helpful to save your marriage.If you follow me much, you know I am not a huge supporter of marital therapy.  On the other hand, Relationship Coaching can be a powerful tool in your efforts to save your marriage.

Many people use my Save The Marriage System and need no further help.

But then there are those times. . . .

Perhaps you are in the midst of one of those times.

Let’s talk about the differences between therapy and coaching.

And then, let me tell you about the 3 times where coaching can be helpful.

(Here is the link to learn more about 3C’s Coaching through Save The Marriage)

“Can My Marriage Heal?”
150 150 Lee H. Baucom, Ph.D.

Can my marriage be better, healed, and saved?“I want to save my marriage,” she told me, “but can it actually be worth it?  If I do the work, and we don’t get divorced, will our marriage ever be good?”

I’ve had this same question many times in my career.  I replied with my same response, “I am not here to simply stop a divorce.  It isn’t worth it to save a marriage, only for it to be a miserable relationship.  Yes, your marriage can heal.  Yes, you can have a marriage you can treasure — both of you can treasure.  But only after you heal.”

Marriages are not like machines — once a part is broken, it’s done.  Marriages are more organic.  More like a human body.  If your body is injured by something, it will heal.  Sure, there may be a scar.  But sometimes, scars are stronger than what was there before.

Not overnight, but your marriage CAN heal, and CAN be a relationship you both will treasure.  It can be warm, loving, respectful, and strong.  It just takes some time and healing.

Learn more on this week’s podcast below.

Ready to start the healing?  GET MY SAVE THE MARRIAGE SYSTEM HERE.