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4 Insights When Your Spouse Irritates You

Recently, my wife, Susan and I had one of those conflicts where we started talking about one thing, but ended up listing everything that we sometimes find irritating about each other.  All of it could have been avoided if we just remembered some important facts. First, we are equal opportunity agitators.  We both do things that annoy each other, and we need to step back and look at ourselves first. Second, it’s...
Sep 23, 2020 / Communication

Protecting Your Child from Stress

A recent study from my alma mater, the University of Florida, revealed that major childhood stresses—like divorce, exposure to substance abuse, and economic hardship—have an almost immediate negative impact on a child’s health.  So, what can you do? First, protect your child from the stress of divorce. Sometimes divorce is beyond the control of a spouse. However, there are times when couples all too quickly buy...
Sep 22, 2020 / Fatherhood

I Don’t Trust God with My Wife

That may sound strange, but last month when my wife had yet another serious heart surgery, I struggled to trust God more than I thought I would…and even more than Susan did.  My lack of trust came in part from my own helplessness…not being in control. She was in the hands of a surgeon who doesn’t know or love her like I do. But control is a bit of a myth…there are so many things I cannot control in life.  Sure, I...
Sep 21, 2020 / Husbands

5 Things to Say to Your Kids Every Day

Part of being a great dad…an All Pro Dad, means using words that encourage your kids.  It means taking every opportunity you get to make your child feel special and loved by you.  So here are some things you should say to your kids every day.  First say, “I love you.”  Love is the foundation for building a strong relationship with your kids.  And since you can never say it too often, tell your kids you love...
Sep 18, 2020 / Relationships and Communication

10 Compliments Your Kids Need to Hear

Everyone needs affirmation, encouragement, and compliments…your children do too. And the best person to give them that boost they need is YOU: their parent. So to help get you started, here are some compliments your kids need to hear.  First, compliment their character.  When your child demonstrates honesty, integrity, or kindness, take them aside and offer a sincere compliment.  Second, compliment their...
Sep 17, 2020 / Relationships and Communication

5 Steps to Dealing with Anger in Children

Most families don't have a plan for dealing with anger. They just continue on, hoping things will get better. When families don't resolve their anger, however, they just keep trying to start over. Trying again is helpful, but we each need to have a bigger plan if we want negative patterns or anger to change. Five Steps toward an Anger-Management Plan There are five essential steps in helping children deal...
Sep 16, 2020 / General

How to React to Porcupine People in Your Life

In the wild, prodding a porcupine with a stick or by yelling doesn’t work very well…it just makes the porcupine more angry. You risk being on the receiving end of some sharp, painful quills. It’s the same way in our relationships. If you prod a porcupine spouse, teen, or in-law, with your words, things usually don’t go to well. Saying things like “What’s your problem?” just makes them even more mad.  There are...
Sep 15, 2020 / Relationships and Communication

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The Family Minute is a daily radio feature that offers everyday advice on marriage, parenting, and family relationships.

Mark Merrill

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