Have you ever wondered what makes a happy and meaningful relationship?
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Psychologist John Gottman has a crazy party trick. He can watch a married couple interact and predict with 95% certainly whether they will be broken up, together and unhappy, or together and happy for years to come
Seems pretty far fetched, right? Well, he revealed what he looks for in a June article for the Atlantic. Gottman says ..
“Happy couples are scanning the social environment for things they can appreciate and say thank you for. They're building a culture of respect and appreciation with purpose. Unhappy couples, instead are looking for their partners' mistakes.”
“It's not just scanning the environment,” said Julie Gottman. “It's scanning the partner for what they're doing right or wrong and criticizing versus respecting them and expressing appreciation.”
Contempt, they've found, is the #1 factor that tears couples apart. People who are focused on criticizing their partners miss 50% (!) of the positive things they're doing and often see negativity when it simply isn't here
Kindness, on the other hand, is what glues couples together. There are two ways to think about kindness. One as a character trait, either you have it, or you don't. Or, you can think of it as a muscle that can grow stronger with exercise
Fascinating, right? How easy is it to find negative things (yard work! dirty dishes! laundry! the kitties did what?) but actively looking for things to appreciate is such a great habit to build. I couldn't help but think this applies not only to marriages, but friendships and family dynamics too.
We were fortunate to host a dinner party Friday night for two couples, both of whom offer incredible examples of marriage done well. I always love being around them; adequate words escape me; some things can only be felt in the gut. You can tell they're solid and grounded, mutual love and respect between them.
Their happiness is always infectious and makes me want to be better
So this weekend, as my husband and I celebrate six months of marriage (!) we're taking a road trip to Minneapolis. I can't wait to wander through IKEA, stay in a downtown hotel, and meet up for dinner with an old friend of his that I'm really excited to meet.
Before we left, I made him his favorite pancakes. A whole-grain recipe whose result is light, fluffy, healthy, and absolutely delicious. Canned apples from my mom are the base of a wonderful compote, to which maple syrup just couldn't compare
ps: Read the full article at The Atlantic
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~ Adapted from Lottie and Doof
Whole Grain Buttermilk Pancakes
- Dry Mix
- 1 cup multigrain Flour Mix (see below)
- 1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
- 2 Tbsp natural sugar (Sugar in the Raw or Turbinado)
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- ½ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
- Wet Mix
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 2 Tbsp unsulfured molasses
- 2 eggs (large or XL)
- zest of one orange
- Multigrain Flour Mix
- 1 cup whole-wheat flour
- 1 cup oat flour
- 1 cup barley flour
- ½ cup millet flour
- ½ cup rye flour
- measure all of the flours into a bowl and whisk together
- In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients until thoroughly combined.
- Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and gently mix, until just combined. For tender pancakes, it is important that you use a light hand. Let the batter sit 10 minutes. (The batter should be thick with a holey surface)
- Heat a 10" cast-iron pan or griddle over medium heat and cook as you would any other pancake.
Maple and Apple Compote
- 1 apple, cored and diced
- ½ Tbsp clarified butter (or coconut oil)
- 2 pinches cinnamon
- 2 Tbsp maple syrup
- Add clarified butter to a small sauce-pan, over low heat. As the butter melts, swirl it around enough to coat the bottom and sides.
- Add the apples and sprinkle with cinnamon. Cook on low to medium heat until the apples are soft, turning them over once to make sure both sides are sprinkled with cinnamon.
- Add enough maple syrup to cover the apples. Allow the mix to bubble for a minute or so.
- Pour over warm pancakes and enjoy