Doing Life Together

Doing Life Together

How to Stop Mindless Eating

posted by Linda Mintle

Have you ever said, “Why did I eat that? I wasn’t hungry.”

Most of us eat without thinking several times a day. But mindless or emotional eating is one of those behaviors that keeps those extra pounds from falling off.

In this short video clip, I give you the PAUSE strategy. Many people have been helped by using this before they grab for that snack without thinking. It is the basis of my book, Press Pause Before You Eat. Give it a try.

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Does It Matter What Your Wife Thinks?

posted by Linda Mintle

Tom’s wife made a spot on comment about his behavior, but Tom isn’t buying it. He looks at her and says, “You are wrong” and then becomes highly defensive. His wife tries again to explain her perception of the problem. Again, Tom refuses to acknowledge her point of view.

Is Tom just being stubborn or is his refusal to listen to her and acknowledge her thinking harming the marriage?

Tom’s refusal to accept his wife’s influence will impact his relationship negatively. Researcher John Gottman and his colleagues found that men who accept their wives’ influence have happier marriages and are less likely to divorce. And the reverse is also true, wives’ who honor and respect their husbands and allow them to influence their decisions have better marriages. Accepting influence from a spouse relates to the power dynamic between a couple. When you listen and take to heart what your partner says, you are basically saying, “I respect this person and value what he or she has to say.”

So men, if you refuse to take the influence of your spouse in decision making and power sharing, your marriage will probably experience problems. Accepting influence creates positive feelings that help to solve problems, but also boosts the marital friendship. When conflict doesn’t escalate to a negative place, relationships do better.

 

Anger Expression: Helpful or Hurtful in Relationships?

posted by Linda Mintle

Back in the 80s, marital therapists used to give angry couples nerf-like bats and tell them to go at each other. We also used to advise angry teens to hit their pillows or even purchase a punching bag and wail on that. While there was no physical danger to engaging people in these exercises, we now know that this is the opposite of what people should do. In fact, after reviews of numerous studies, the conclusion is that the expression of anger leads the angry person (and others) to feel more angry. In other words, catharsis doesn’t work. Letting out your angry actually increases anger in a relationship and is hurtful.

Anger expression can be helpful when it is done in a constructive manner. And one healthy way to approach your angry feelings in a relationship is to have a gentle start up. This keeps defensiveness down and allows the other person to hear you and respond.

So rather than venting those angry feelings by acting out the aggression and addressing a conflict in a harsh and angry manner, follow Proverbs 29:11–don’t give full vent to your anger. God knows this doesn’t work and so do relationship experts!

Control your tongue. Make the beginning of the confrontation, gentle and soft. “I have been feeling angry about something and want to talk it through with you,” for example. Pause, think and avoid reacting immediately. Exercise the fruit of the Spirit–self-control.

When anger is confronted with a soft start up, it is more likely the problem can be discussed and resolved.

Encountering Life Storms: Lessons from Pilots

posted by Linda Mintle

Are you going through a difficult time, what we might call a storm in your life? It could be a health diagnosis, a failing relationship, difficulty at work, parenting problems, etc. We all have problems and issues that pop up in life. This is unavoidable. But what isn’t unavoidable is handling the storms with confidence and calm.

Storms are inevitable when you fly as a pilot of an aircraft. My neighbor is a pilot for a major airline. He has been trained specifically on what to do when he encounters storms. Pilots learn the 5 Cs of how to deal with storms. The application to our lives is so helpful that I wanted to share this. A visiting pastor in our church shared this powerful metaphor.

When you encounter a life storm:

1) Calm down–don’t panic or allow fear to drive your decisions or reactions. Staying calm is key to thinking and reacting properly.

2) Check your instruments--you can’t go by feelings. Pilots deal with a condition in which their feeling of up and down isn’t always correct. Thus, they have to rely on their instruments to give them correct information. The same is true for us. Our feelings aren’t the best indicator of how to proceed when storms come. We must check our instruments–prayer and the Word of God.

3) Communicate with the tower--when storms hit, it is imperative to communicate with the tower. The tower can see you on radar and has a better picture of your circumstance than you do. In our case, the tower is God. Stay connected, don’t pull away.

4) Comply with what you are told- Because the tower has a better view of the weather and your aircraft, do what they tell you to do. Don’t go rogue. Listen to instructions and comply. The same is true for the Christian. Instead of listening to all the voices around us, comply with the Word and what God tells you to do.

5) Climb higher–When a storm is really difficult to fly through, the best thing is to climb higher and get above the storm. Worship is our way to go higher. The more we immerse ourselves in the presence of God, the more we can get above the storm and be in a place of peace.


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