AwareNow: Issue 25: The Light Edition

Page 65

AwareNow Podcast


Exclusive interview with John & Ana Mann


ANA: (continued) you can neglect your partner. So, what we're really trying to share is a recipe, if you will, for how do you drop the score card? How do you stop keeping score with your partner? Because that's just another form of criticism. As long as you're keeping score, you're still trying to figure out what did I get and what did I lose? I did the dishes three times this week. What have you done? That's really not gonna get you there. That's a recipe for failure. We want to help people learn how to drop the scorecard, be self aware, be emotionally mature and emotionally intelligent. We want to give people the everyday skills that will make such a difference in their marriage.

ALLIÉ: I won’t ask you to give away all five secrets revealed in your book, but can you share one?

JOHN: I'll share the first secret. They become progressively more deep in a sense. The first is really accessible, and it's one that we all know. It's one that we all put into practice when we're first in love. It's one that we all know intuitively. And if we're parents, we know that we have to do it for our kids, and we do it spontaneously, but we can forget it over time with each other. It's simply called 'appreciate'. The first secret is to take the time every day, multiple times a day, to find something about your partner that you love. You take a moment to tell them about it. There's two parts to it. It's finding the thing that you love. It's noticing -- taking the time to notice. Then it's also saying it out loud to the other person. And that may just take 30 seconds. It may take 60 seconds. It's a little thing. For some people that can feel awkward. We've been married for 15 years. I'm supposed to tell you what I love about you? It feels kind of weird -- especially guys, for some reason, will get weird about this. It can be like using a muscle that you haven't used for 15 years, but if you stop your spouse and say, "I just wanna tell you the way that you talked to me yesterday when I was so upset about work... I was upset. I didn't even know how to put it in words, but you just talked to me and you made me feel so much better about myself. I really appreciate that." That's all. Boom. Go on with our day. These can be huge things. These can be simple things. Do it three times a day. We even have people make a list on paper, and build the list. The cool thing about this, Allié, is that as you go in your marriage, you keep looking for new things to add on your list every day. It's like a gratitude list. It is a gratitude list, in a sense. The more things you find, the more things there are to look for. The more you look, the more you discover. It's like a treasure hunt. You engage in a treasure hunt about the other person. The fascinating thing is that it can last and will last the rest of your life. Every individual is an unexplored continent of great things to love and appreciate about them. If you go looking, you'll go finding. ∎

“To say love is what makes a marriage work is like saying it takes oxygen to climb a mountain. Yes, oxygen is necessary. But not sufficient.” Learn more about John, Ana, and ‘The Go-Giver Marriage: