January/February 2013 Newsletter

Quote of the Month: “Love seems the swiftest but it is the slowest of all growths. No man or woman really knows what perfect love is until they have been married a quarter of a century.” Mark Twain

Scripture of the Month: “Perfect love casts out fear.” I John 4:18

Wear Red for Heart Disease  2/1

Super Bowl  2/3

Valentine’s Day 2/14

I know, it’s supposed to be all about love for your significant other, but don’t forget the girlfriends. When we’re stressed, we’re all tempted to break our girls’ night outs, book clubs or Starbucks meet-ups. But don’t. According to a recent Dutch study, the more you hang out with friends, the easier it is to cope with all that’s stressing you out! But then, we all knew that. Friends make us laugh until we’re in danger of wetting our pants, they offer listening ears and solutions if  we want them, but most of all, they make us think we can get through this…and we can. (Good Housekeeping, 101, 1/13)

The Love Interview

This month, I am interviewing Rick Johnson, author and founder of  Better Dads. (www.betterdads.com) You have a chance to WIN a FREE copy of his new book, The Marriage of Your Dreams, just in time for the month of love!

If you had to pick one, what is the “secret ingredient” of a lasting marriage?

Ha! Nice try. I guess the one trait I think probably contributes most to a long lasting marriage is commitment. Commitment allows a couple to weather all the extreme highs and lows of a relationship which then allows them to bond more deeply.

Why do you think statistically speaking, that Christian marriages don’t have any better track records than non-Christian ones?

Unfortunately, I don’t think Christians take their vows before God any more seriously than non-Christians do. I think most people today have been brought up either with a model of divorce or to cut and run when things get tough. Americans don’t “suffer” well and so they tend to quit easier today than they did in times past.

Parts of your writing focuses on understanding your husband. What are the 3 best tools for doing this?

Understanding that a man is not a woman and so not having expectations that he will respond or communicate like a woman. Also, a woman’s expectations of her husband are important—are they realistic? Lastly, a woman who genuinely “likes” men and appreciates the differences he brings to her life are usually happier.

In this book, you say that the area in which men most struggle is relationships. Women tend to excel at them. Why is that?

The book goes to great lengths to describe this. Women are more relational and better in tune with their emotions. Women tend to love more unconditionally, while men tend to have a more performance based love style. Biologically, women are wired to be more nurturing than males.

You write that admiration and genuine respect are two things that a man REALLY needs from his wife. How do we give this, practically speaking?

Trust his decisions, speak proudly of him behind his back, and appreciate his efforts.

I loved your image of a man’s sexual desire as “the little guy that sits on a man’s shoulder and whispers exciting adventures in his ear all day long.” (p. 101) How can we best meet those needs?

Understand that sex is not JUST a physical need for a man, but fulfills a psychological and emotional need as well. A man can’t truly feel loved if his physical needs are not being met. A woman who understands that and then realizes that a man’s greatest sex organ is between his ears is a treasure. A healthy sex life takes work and effort by both spouses to continue to be exciting after about three years of marriage, or after children come along, or after you pass about your mid-40s. J

Men generally think about sex more frequently, but you say that WOMEN have more sexual power! I was blown away by that. …How did you reach that conclusion?

There are two kinds of sexual power a woman has—one through her gender, and one through the desire men have to be with her. A woman is at the apex of her sexual power just before she has sex with a man (especially for the first time). Literally she can get him to do just about anything. Watch any movie and you can see this played out. I discuss this with my young adult daughter all the time—most women disregard this power or throw it away by indiscriminately giving themselves away. It’s not a power of manipulation—God has granted women this power by virtue of their gender. Most men will even help an elderly lady (who loses sexual power as she ages) just because of her gender. That’s power.

Here were a few more of my favorite nuggets from your new book:

“Nagging is a sign of mistrust.”

“All wives are trophy wives,” in the sense that our husbands long to be proud of us.

Personally, what is YOUR favorite concept in The Marriage of Your Dreams?

I really enjoyed the “Real Questions from Real Women” at the end of each chapter. It was fun. You should have seen the questions and my answers that my editor refused to allow to stay in the book!

Rick, I would have loved to have seen those too. God bless you in your work for marriages!

 

To ENTER and WIN, just leave a comment ON my WEBSITE, www.cindydagnan.com

$123,333/SECOND – gulp! That’s the cost of one SECOND of a commercial during this year’s Super Bowl! Confession: that’s the only reason I watch the game.

75% of couples who’ve been together between 1 and 5 years still hold hands a few times a week. Only 47% of couples hold hands after 10 years! But holding your partner’s hand lessens stress. So start up again. (Real Simple, 6, 2/13)

If you’re feeling a little blue this winter, know that doing a few simple, repetitive tasks like hand-washing dishes, ironing or folding clothes can actually make you feel better. Why? It doesn’t require any real effort, there’s the payoff of getting something done and the eye-hand coordination may release serotonin, those feel-good chemicals in your brain. (First, 35, 12/24/12)

A fun, fresh historical fiction romance for Valentine’s Day – A Change of Fortune, by Jen Turano.

On Marriage

For in the first place, love convinces a couple that they are the greatest romance that has ever been, that no two people have ever loved as they do, and that they will sacrifice absolutely anything to be together. And then marriage asks them to prove it. Marriage is the down-to-earth dimension of romance, the translation of a romantic blueprint into costly reality. It is the practical working out of people’s grandest dreams and ideals and promises in the realm of love.

Mike Mason in The Mystery of Marriage

Speaking Highlights

Crossroads Christian Church – Baxter Springs, KS – Monday, January 28

Freeman East – Diabetes Support Group – Joplin, MO – Monday, February 18

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Cindy Sigler Dagnan

Author; Speaker; Chocolate Lover!

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