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Our 3-week course on how to transform your relationships, whether they're with your partner, family or friends is coming up fast.

We'll be sharing our direct experience of peaceful, harmonious relating, and how you can make this a reality in all your relationships.

This pilot course will be FREE to our newsletter readers. It will be limited to 12 people and is filling up quickly, so contact us to register now. You’re also welcome to invite someone you feel would benefit from this experience. (Please have them let us know you recommended them.)

The course consists of 3 sessions of 90-minute Zoom meetings. They will be held on Saturday mornings starting at 9 a.m. PDT on April 30, May 7 and May 14.

Contact us at pilotcourse@philandmaude.com
A few notes: if you are part of a couple and only one of you wishes to attend, don't let that stand in your way. We'll be happy to have you.

When you write us that you'd like to attend, we will immediately respond with a confirmation when places are still available. Please look in your junk, trash, promotions, etc. to make sure you don't overlook our reply.

Why You Don't Need to Suffer and Struggle in Your Relationships

Couple arguingDo you believe that in order to have honest and true relationships that you have to fight and suffer and slog through tons of drama? Do you push and shove at each other, glorifying this way of interacting as the symbol of how much you love each other? Do you believe that continuing in this manner shows that love?

It is not really surprising if you do. There is so much written extolling this behavior and making it seem that it is the only way to be truly honest with each other, while at the same time casting doubt and aspersions on those who seem to relate peacefully, joyfully, even happily!

We’d like to quote and comment on a piece from Jeff Foster* that is a perfect example of this presentation of relationships.

The healthiest relationships and friendships are not necessarily the ones that look happiest to the naked eye.

But then again they probably are.

They aren’t necessarily the ones where two people are always found holding hands, giggling, dancing and singing with the butterflies on Instagram, where nothing ever goes wrong and love is beautiful and blissful and perfect.

They aren’t necessarily those, but they are far more likely to be than the ones being extolled in this piece. Notice the subtle put down and trivializing of those who appear in harmony. Why is that automatically suspect?

External ‘perfection’ can easily mask internal devastation, disconnection and that awful, unspoken desperation to be free.

Why are those who exude joy accused of ‘external perfection’ and immediately portrayed as having misery on the inside!?

The healthiest relationships are the honest ones.

So are we to believe that honest relationships have to be laden down with cares and woes?

And they might not look so ‘happy’ or ‘carefree’ from the outside. They might not fit the image of what a relationship ‘should’ or ‘must’ look or feel like.

They might not, but one can say the same about “Two people are always found holding hands, giggling, dancing and singing with the butterflies.” They might feel just as it looks, even with the obnoxious insinuation that joy is trivial and unbelievable.

Here, two people tell the honest, painful truth about today, and continually let go of all their preconceived ideas about each other.

If this were only true. But in fact too often people are acting out and holding onto the preconceived notions proposed in this excerpt!

The relationship is forever renewed in the furnace of authenticity. There may be ruptures, misunderstandings, even intense feelings of doubt and disconnection, but there is a mutual willingness to face this seeming mess head-on!

His ‘may be’ comes across as nearly inevitable, and presents struggle as a noble action, but there isn’t even a hint that the end goal is to stop these destructive behaviors, and by calling it a ‘mutual mess,’ he is oblivious to the idea that people need to work on themselves.

Our experience, and the path we share, is one in which you can make a choice to drop the negative behaviors from past and present relationships, and learn and grow. You can change by choice and by setting your intention to do so. This does not involve dishonesty, sublimation of your feelings or compromising and giving up parts of yourself to ‘keep the peace’. It involves a real transformation, and it happens inside you. When two people relate in this way, then both can find a path to the visceral true experience of living peace as a practice, while each growing to their full potential. We agree with the quote from Eckhart Tolle that Jeff Foster ends his piece with:

Relationships aren’t here to make us happy – for true happiness lies within. They’re here to make us profoundly conscious.

We agree that it is the work within yourself that will enable you to move forward on a path toward peaceful and enriching relationships. However, Eckhart Tolle did not by any means imply that relationships should make you unhappy, or that happiness is to be despised. He was indicating that you have to look within for your growth and change.
* This piece was originally in his book “Falling in Love with Where You Are”, p.168, and in edited form on his Facebook page. It has appeared in many places both with and without attribution.

Photo credit: Phil and Maude Mayes
Photo note: A still from one of our videos

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Successful Relationship Reading Corner


Books on shelfThis week we wrote about why you don't need to suffer and struggle in your relationships. Here are some writers on how to live a different way.

5 Ways You Know It’s True Love (Love vs. Infatuation) "True love entails being comfortable and completely yourself with another human being – and being accepted for who you are without judgment. It is also important to remember, in this case, that love is a two-way street. Not only do you need to feel loved and accepted completely for who you are, but in order to foster true love in your relationship, you need to provide that same love without judgment to your partner."

How to Know it’s Real Love "“I can’t live,” wails the singer, “if living is without you.” It sounds so tragically deep to say that losing your lover’s affections would make life unlivable—but have you ever been in a relationship with someone whose survival truly seemed to depend on your love? Someone who sat around waiting for you to make life bearable, who threatened to commit suicide if you ever broke up? Or have you found yourself on the grasping side of the equation, needing your partner the way you need oxygen? The emotion that fuels this kind of relationship isn’t love; it’s desperation. It can feel romantic at first, but over time it invariably fails to meet either partner’s needs."

True Love Means Living In Peace And Stability "True love brings harmony. We can all agree that finding an emotionally mature person is not an easy task. Finding "the one" is never easy. This is a person who will love you unconditionally and will not cheat on you but will instead make you feel secure and confident about everything. But understand something – true love is not for the indecisive. No good relationship can be built out of instability. You have to have stability and genuineness that comes from within to find true love. You cannot lie to yourself and expect that the relationship you have found based on that lie will go anywhere. Relationships get complicated, and finding a perfect balance is often a struggle. But in the end, you have to figure out what you want in your life and what you don't want in order to build a good relationship."

Spreading peace one relationship at a time
Phil and Maude
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