Is the Way You Talk to Yourself Hurting Your Relationship?
Frank and Frances constantly "shoulded" on themselves and each other.
Frank thought Frances should do things his way. Frances thought Frank
should behave better toward her. Both believed reality should conform
to their desires. Their irrational wants became unrealistic, absolutistic
As in so many marriages where communication breaks down, the couple found
themselves creating and escalating a vicious cycle of put-downs, anger,
"There are three possible roles in a relationship," say Dr. Albert Ellis
and Ted Crawford. "These are: one-up, one-down, or a peer partnership.
The goal in creating better intimate relationships is to move from a
'one-up and one-down' toward a 'peer' or 'equal' partnership."
The secret? Learn the correct way to talk to yourself.
Ellis, renowned creator of Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT), has
long focused his work on the self-talk people use to disturb themselves.
"You hold conversations in your own head, and actually construct and create
most of your self-defeating thoughts, feelings, actions," he explains.
"And therefore you can also deconstruct and reduce them."
Dr. Ellis coined the term "musturbation" to describe an irrational belief
system based on unrealistic, illogical, self-defeating demands, commands,
shoulds, oughts, and musts such as:
- I must always do well.
- Others must always treat me kindly and fairly.
- Conditions must always provide me what I want, the way I want it.
Once you construct dire necessities out of your strong preferences, he warns,
you are in trouble.a
Drawing on REBT principles, Ted Crawford and his wife fashioned a system
that became the foundation for their marriage. He and Dr. Ellis wrote
MAKING INTIMATE CONNECTIONS: SEVEN GUIDELINES FOR GREAT
RELATIONSHIPS AND BETTER COMMUNICATION (Impact Publishers, Inc.)
to demonstrate how a commitment to healthy self-talk results in a stronger,
more realistic union with your mate.
Using the Guidelines, couples can learn to:
- Express appreciation frequently. Avoid steady criticism.
- Give your partner the right to be wrong.
- Reconsider your wants as goals that you may achieve later.
Packed with dozens of real-life couple vignettes, an easy-to-follow review
format and a "key" for understanding and applying each Guideline, MAKING
INTIMATE CONNECTIONS offers an objective perspective that lets couples test
practical suggestions and adjust them to their own needs.
Albert Ellis, Ph.D., is an internationally renowned, controversial, popular,
charismatic, innovative psychologist. His work includes more than sixty
books, hundreds of radio and TV appearances, lectures and workshops
worldwide, and professional recognition as one of the world's most influential
psychotherapists. Dr. Ellis is acknowledged as the "father" of Rational Emotive
Behavior Therapy and the "grandfather" of Cognitive Behavior Therapy -- two of
the most widely practiced forms of contemporary psychotherapy.
Ted Crawford, B.A., is founder of the Revolving Discussion Sequence (RDS),
and former leader of the RDS Growth Group. He is a specialist in small group
MAKING INTIMATE CONNECTIONS is available at online and local bookstores
nationwide or directly from Impact Publishers, Inc. at 1-800-246-7228.
MAKING INTIMATE CONNECTIONS
Seven Guidelines for Great Relationships and Better Communicati
by Albert Ellis, Ph.D., and Ted Crawford, B.A.
160 pages -- Trade paperback
ISBN: 1-886230-33-1 -- $15.95 -- November 2000/p>
Buy Now! Making Intimate Connections