Tag anger

Understanding Threesomes

Relationships are the stuff of life. Quite literally, nothing in the universe exists that isn't in a relationship to a whole bunch of other stuff, not to mention (indirectly) everything else in existence too. Of course, we homo sapiens, when we discuss relationships, we're usually referring to the face-to-face, human-to-human variety, which are by far the most complicated of them all. In this article, I'll explain what makes our interpersonal interactions just so mischievously difficult, and what to do about all those threesomes in which we keep unwittingly finding ourselves.

Creating a World without Assholes

People can be real jerks. They can be rude, condescending, insulting. They can be greedy, selfish, egotistical. They can be stubborn, narrow-minded, hard-headed, and sometimes just plain mean. You probably know a few people like this, people you avoid as much as possible, those sundry unpleasant sorts you've come to regard as, well, assholes.

In Praise of Manipulation

Manipulation gets a bad rap. In The Two Truths About Love: The Art & Wisdom of Extraordinary Relationships, as well as in my counseling sessions with clients, I explain how each and every one of us has 99% control of every relationship. Upon occasion, a client will remark, "Oh, but I don't want to be thought of as controlling." What a travesty! Such a person has yet to awaken to the limitless rewards that come from being manipulative. My goal, as a therapist, is to change this.

What a Perfect Moment Can Teach Us About Anger

One of my fondest memories is from one night in Thailand. I was at a café on the banks of the Mekhong River, looking across into Laos on the other side. The weather was perfectly clear where I sat but, over in Laos, a storm was moving slowly along the edge of the river. Peacefully, I watched the storm safely from afar, the moon overhead, and marveled at the storm’s many lightning strikes as it crept, like a mythical goliath, across the far off shore. It was a truly beautiful hour of my life.

Learning from Our Reputations

Of the many people you know—family, friends, co-workers or classmates, neighbors, the locals at your favorite restaurant or bar or café, the people who work at your most frequented stores, and everyone else who has crossed your path at one time or another—each has their own perspective about who and how you are. Some of these people know you well, while others much less so, yet all have an opinion, small or large, that has been gained through their interactions with you. In short, you have a reputation. In counseling, I’ve recently been thinking a lot about this notion of reputation, enough so that I have decided to share my thoughts about this important topic. In short, I feel that it is tremendously valuable to recognize this important truth: that we earn our reputations.

When is a Relationship Officially Over?

When people tell me that they no longer have a relationship with someone, I know this is untrue. No matter how great the gap that divides two people, no matter how vitriolic or rare their interactions, even if these interactions are basically non-existent, the truth is that the relationship persists. It may not be a great relationship or be particularly rewarding for either member, but it continues to be there, if only barely, nonetheless.