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5 Ways to Hug a Porcupine

It’s easy to love people who are loveable. But what about those who aren’t? It’s hard to hug prickly porcupine people but I’ve got some ways you can do it. First, hug the porcupine with your arms. This one’s obvious…sometimes a porcupine just needs your arms around them. Second, hug the porcupine with your hands. This is practical love. For example, if your spouse is overwhelmed, take the burden off them by...
Sep 29, 2017 / 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 28, 2017 / Relationships and Communication

Be Present, Not Balanced: Stop Trying to Live a Well-Balanced Life

So-called work-life balance is a myth. People search for it, but never find it.  So stop worrying about achieving that balance and start striving to be present. Think about these three Ps that will help you to be more focused on being present for your family.  First, prioritize. When you step back and look at how you spend your time, you’ll realize that some things like your favorite television show just aren’t as...
Sep 27, 2017 / Relationships and Communication

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 19, 2017 / Relationships and Communication

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 14, 2017 / Relationships and Communication

7 Common Trigger Points That Make People Prickly

Porcupines have trigger points that cause the sharp quills on its back to raise up. When it’s threatened or irritated, it can get really mean and shoot those quills into someone or something and cause a lot of pain. Well, I’ve got certain trigger points that cause me to get cranky and prickly. One of mine is unmet expectations. When I have crazy high expectations for others, and those expectations are not met, I...
Aug 17, 2017 / Relationships and Communication

6 Short Sentences Your Child Needs to Hear You Say

There are some short sentences that every child needs to hear, on a regular basis, from their dad.  These sentences can make or break their sense of identity, belonging, security and value. For example, tell your child “I'm here for you.” Being available to your child is incredibly important. And it’s more than just permission to come to you when times are tough…it’s an invitation with a welcome mat.  It tells...
Aug 15, 2017 / 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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