There are few things more powerful than fear. Advertisers have always said sex sells, but fear outsells sex, and everything else. It feeds our headlines, stocks our shelves, and shapes our politics.
Fear also, and far too often, guides our relationships. Especially the most important one. Marriage can be terrifying.
Why? Because unlike any other relationship, marriage naturally calls us to face our most basic fears:
—fear of rejection, because what if the only one I wanna be with doesn’t want to be with me?
—fear of mortality, because what if I die and lose him forever?
—fear of inadequacy, because what if I’m not good enough to provide, to attract, to protect, to nurture?
—fear of being alone, because what if I lose her, or perhaps worse—what if this marriage never cures my loneliness?
Like a mirror, marriage shows us these fears on a continual basis. And if left unchecked, we can give in to these fears and start to project them onto our spouse. No wonder the most rage-filled people I’ve ever met are spouses going through a divorce. Fear. Anger. Hate. Suffering.
Thankfully there is another way. Thankfully there is a “force” more powerful than fear: Courageous, vulnerable love. sex
—Send your mate a brief thank you text. Right now.
—Inform your spouse of your desire to spend a night together without the kids.
—Think about the pet peeve your spouse does that drives you the craziest, and find a way to love it. Don’t just tolerate it. Love it.
—This evening, walk up, kiss him/her like you mean it, then look into their eyes and say, “I’ve been thinking about you all day.”
(Then, whatever you do, go see Star Wars: The Force Awakens—it’s spectacular).