What is the key to being mindful in your marriage?

The idea of mindfulness is to be present to ourselves physically, emotionally, spiritually and literally in the moment. Being mindful involves focusing on your breathing and thoughts rather than projecting yourself into the future with worries and anxiety. Sometimes it is much easier, mentally, to think about the what ifs– What if this happens? What if that happens? What if we break up? What if we can’t afford this? In turn, what becomes more challenging is staying in the present moment.

When life is plagued with disconnection and stress, things can get tough. More and more people are finding themselves running on autopilot, essentially. They are not fully and deeply present with themselves and each other. And sadly, a lot of people end up just accepting this as the inevitable. If couples can learn to develop skills for mindfulness, however, their communication, expression and intimacy abilities will flourish.

Today’s guest is Dr. Kevin Metz, a couples specialist with Lepage Associates, and he’ll be discussing some of the techniques for mindfulness that he teaches and encourages in relationships. While helping people get back to a positive place in their marriages, Kevin inspires a level of discipline and mindful awareness.

To find out more about Kevin and his practice, visit their website or call (919) 572-0000 to schedule an appointment.

What happens to a marriage when parents must begin to prepare for an empty nest?

When parents start to prepare to send their son or daughter off to college they are not only helping to ease the transition into college life for their child, but also paving the way for their own next steps… of marriage and an empty nest, that is. But many families aren’t exactly aware of the challenges that arise with big transitions and changes, and therefore they’re not as proactive as they could be.

Sometimes a couple isn’t really clear on the parenting roles that are played with kids in college. When this is the case, it’s easy for parents to be on different pages– and they might not have a solid plan for how they will respond to different crises and critical issues. With a little guidance, however, it can be easy and uplifting for a couple to get back to a positive place; a place where they successfully parent and maintain a long-standing marriage as a team.

Today’s guest is Dr. Susan Orenstein, the director of Orenstein Solutions. Susan says couples can fix these issues by working together to create plans for the expected and the unexpected. An empty nest doesn’t have to be a bad thing… it can, in fact, be just the beginning.

To find out more about Susan and her practice, visit their website or call (919) 968-8586

Is there a right way and a wrong way to argue?

The answer is yes. And the secret’s out. There is a right way and a wrong way to argue. Oftentimes when couples fight, it becomes husband versus wife, him against her. The issue with that, however, is that the entire sense of the “team” attitude within the couple gets lost in the mess.

With a relationship it’s not about not getting angry or not disagreeing because that’s unrealistic. The true key is staying emotionally connected to someone you view as a teammate in a generally positive way. According to relationship expert John Gottman, there are two types of problems within relationships: resolvable and perpetual; and two out of three problems are perpetual. Luckily, there are conflict resolution skills for each kind of problem that couples can learn and use to ultimately strengthen their marriages.

Today’s guest is Erica Blystone, a licensed clinical social worker with Lepage Associates. After more than 10 years of clinical work with adults, couples, children and families, Erica has seen her fair share of conflict within relationships, and she says there is a way to manage it effectively.

To find out more about Erica and her practice, visit their website or call (919) 572-0000 to schedule an appointment.