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Book Review: Dare to Respect

IMG_2918I was sent the book, Dare to Respect by Tammy Oberg de la Garza and was asked to give a candid critique on it. Honestly, I didn’t expect to enjoy it because I have not read The Respect Dare, the original book this one is based on, and because I do not read Christian fiction as a rule. Many years ago, I realized that reading about young couples who spend every waking moment together and falling in love is not healthy for a reader with a husband who travels extensively. It created all kinds of discontent for me and I learned that what is beneficial for one can be detrimental for another. Because I had agreed to, I dove in and was pleasantly surprised to find that this Christian book was different.
The reader is introduced to six women who have a common reason to come together weekly and complain about their husbands. One of the wives suggests the group engages in a 40 day challenge to improve their marriages. This is the story of six very diverse women who embark on a journey they cannot predict and hit upon issues such as infidelity, pornography, alcoholism and co-dependency.
I was on a Spring Break trip with my two daughters and brought this book along on the beach, expecting it to be a quick read. I enjoyed the story line so much, and even sacrificed some quality time with my girls to finish it. The book is hopeful in that it points back to our true source of fulfillment, Christ, and it removes pressure from expecting our husbands to provide where they cannot. I appreciated the fact that the characters were not perfect, that they allowed each other into their lives and were open to change, and I loved that the characters were wildly different from one another, so the reader should be able to connect with at least one character.
I would recommend this book to any woman who has been married for more than five years, it is a refreshing read with an important message. You can read more of Tammy Oberhausen de la Garza’s work on her blog: www.daretorespect.com

Watch Your Language

eyeBecause of the work that I do, I get to research the subjects of marriage, love, sex and the Christian church. Almost two years ago I ran across a study done by Dr. John Gottman, who claims to be able to predict the success of a marriage with 80% accuracy based on one thing: subtle body language.

This was intriguing to me; could I learn what to look for and also be able to predict if a couple will stay together or not? This could be valuable knowledge. I read that one of the biggest cues is eye-rolling, apparently a response to your spouse in this fashion indicates contempt. Contempt. I quickly read on to learn about more factors, thinking smugly that I was glad I didn’t do this.

Until I did.

My guy made a comment about something I didn’t agree with, I let him know how I felt and realized that he was not going to change his stance, so I rolled my eyes as I walked away from him. Contempt? I didn’t think so. But it doesn’t really matter what I thought, what mattered was the lack of respect I was showing my husband in dismissing him and his opinion.

I started to notice every time I rolled my eyes, not just at my guy, but also at strangers and my family members and immediately was struck each time with the word: contempt. I forced myself to stop and think about what I was feeling towards the person and often came up with emotions like frustration, confusion, apathy and anger but not contempt. And yet that is exactly what I was conveying.

How about you, does your body language line up with the way you are feeling? I had to stop this behavior, and replace it with sharing my true feelings for the person if we were in relationship, and just letting go of emotions around people I didn’t know. We have a choice, to use our subtle cues to encourage or to tear down, and it may take some practice, but I think it’s worth it to be intentional with our language.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1028578553586958760.html

http://www.mentalhelp.net/poc/view_doc.php?type=doc&id=9457&cn=289

Watch Your Language

eyeBecause of the work that I do, I get to research the subjects of marriage, love, sex and the Christian church. Almost two years ago I ran across a study done by Dr. John Gottman, who claims to be able to predict the success of a marriage with 80% accuracy based on one thing: subtle body language.

This was intriguing to me; could I learn what to look for and also be able to predict if a couple will stay together or not? This could be valuable knowledge. I read that one of the biggest cues is eye-rolling, apparently a response to your spouse in this fashion indicates contempt. Contempt. I quickly read on to learn about more factors, thinking smugly that I was glad I didn’t do this.

Until I did.

My guy made a comment about something I didn’t agree with, I let him know how I felt and realized that he was not going to change his stance, so I rolled my eyes as I walked away from him. Contempt? I didn’t think so. But it doesn’t really matter what I thought, what mattered was the lack of respect I was showing my husband in dismissing him and his opinion.

I started to notice every time I rolled my eyes, not just at my guy, but also at strangers and my family members and immediately was struck each time with the word: contempt. I forced myself to stop and think about what I was feeling towards the person and often came up with emotions like frustration, confusion, apathy and anger but not contempt. And yet that is exactly what I was conveying.

Does your body language line up with the way you are feeling? I had to stop this behavior, and replace it with sharing my true feelings for the person if we were in relationship, and just letting go of emotions around people I didn’t know. We have a choice, to use our subtle cues to encourage or to tear down, and it may take some practice, but I think it’s worth it to be intentional with our choices.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1028578553586958760.html

http://www.mentalhelp.net/poc/view_doc.php?type=doc&id=9457&cn=289

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