Unlearning the 5 Love Languages and Other Fables [SSL 308]

I’m featuring a program today on the failure of pop psychology (5 Love Languages) and the what the empirical studies actually tell us about lasting relationships.

After you listen, you can find the links to the articles I used as resources here on the substack page here ⬇️ :


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Of Course, You Will Marry the Wrong Person [SSL77]

It’s time for another Wednesday audio delivery!

This is Soul School Lesson 77

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(Feature photo is a Creative Common image from Pixby and requires no attribution.)

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Alain de Botton

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Eps 94: The (untrue) Stories We Tell Ourselves in Relationships, Guest Scott Gornto

Welcome to Spark My Muse!

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Today my guest is R. SCOTT GORNTO (MDIV, LMFT, CST,) who is a therapist, speaker, and author based in Dallas, Texas. He’s the creator of the Auxano Approach® to relationships, The Truth About Marriage® workshops and intensives for couples, and the RQ Relational Intelligence program for C-level executives and leaders.

• Today, we discuss very useful concepts and methods from his book “The Stories We Tell Ourselves” among other things, including how we construct reality. 


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of Episode 94, with Scott.

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The Many Lives of the Hippest Street in America

What if YOU lived on the coolest street in America?

Ada Calhoun writes for the New York Times, (and has written for O magazine, The New Republican, The Atlantic, and Cosmopolitan, among others). She grew up as the daughter of 1960s Bohemians who came to live in the East Village during the Bob Dylan era.

Maybe the most ubiquitous thing about the most famous (and infamous) hip section of New York City is how commonly people declare that it’s not as cool as it was before. And strangely, there’s a 100 year- history of just that thing.

Calhoun researched the 400 year history of New York in the St Marks area and she has written a fascinating book called St Marks is Dead which is an excellent commentary on the idea of “cool” as well as a glimpse into one of the most culturally powerful streets in the U.S.

Ada Calhoun / Author
Ada Calhoun / Author

Her book “St Marks is Dead” can be found here.

A peek at The East Village


MIN 1:00
The background for her article that went viral “The Wedding Toast I’ll never Give”

Realism for love and marriage.

The “and yet” philosophy of paradox in life and love.

The big flight fight.

Ada’s mother says, “The way you stay married is you don’t get divorced.”

The marriage “toolbox” for staying together only had a bent screwdriver and tweezers.

How her parents’ marriage defied the odds.

Thinking of a spouse as “family”.

Thinking of marriage, not as a dating phase, but as becoming family.

There’s going to be joy and pain both.

Ada’s parenting book about how you should ignore all the parenting books and look at your kid and figure out who they are, instead of worrying about being the perfect parent:
“Instinctive Parenting: Trusting Ourselves to Raise Good Kids”

On growing up as the child of 1960’s Bohemians of the Bob Dylan era in New York City’s East Village in the St Mark’s Place neighborhood and being one of the only kids in the neighborhood during a time when it was not child-friendly. (Many fires, the AIDS epidemic hit the area hard, drugs, junkies, homelessness and tent cities, prostitution were all nearby).

Working at the Austin Chronicle

On being a journalist in New York City

On her new book “St Marks is Dead: The Many Lives of America’s Hippest Street”

20:30 High rent, and neighborhood changes to St Marks Place cause people to wish for the way it was. They feel betrayed.

Ada researched and found that each generation had the same experience throughout the last century.

Malcolm Cowley: “Bohemia is always yesterday.”

What St Marks Place is like in 2015.

(Lisa) My first experience in New York City.

Complaining is the one constant in NYC neighborhoods.

Hippy boom, punk era, DIY art scene, then the GAP moved in in the late 1980s, then the tv show Kids era, then the Bloomsburg era.

Answering: Where in Manhattan is the artistic cultural hot spot now?

once a franchise moves in….

The franchises that opened and then closed in the East Village.

Places she recommends on St Marks Place. 3rd Avenue to Avenue A: 3 blocks that ends at Thomkins Square Park.

The median apartment costs more than a million dollars.

Neil Patrick Harris in Harlem and the upswing of that area.

Music, and art and going outside can happen in NYC public schools now.

What was St Marks Place like 400 years ago?

St Marks Place, the church, is the oldest place of continuous worship in New York City.

About the racial tension and the hippy priest in 1969, named Michael Allen who was kicked out of St Marks Place.

EPS 26: When Childhood Suffering is Transfigured into a Thriving Life


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Join in for weekly LIVE interactive discussions each Tuesday about that week’s podcast topic! VIEW UPCOMING topics and subscribe to join in HERE


Melissa Wilson didn’t just survive mistreatment as a child, she worked to heal from it, redeem it, and establish a platform to help sufferers and advocate for those who are suffering now or wounded from the past.

Melissa converses with me about how she found healing and the joy of transforming her pain into a thriving website and podcast that shares stories of victory, triumph, and overcoming great odds.

Don’t let your past define you. Here are some ways you can move forward and even find a valuable mission in life.


SHOWNOTES with links

(These are approximate times in this audio broadcast.)

MIN 1:30

The Grass Gets Greener is Melissa’s project that has and continues to redeem and heal her past.

How did she begin to sense this path of helping and advocating for others?


Getting therapy and then being able to think about helping others.


How forgiveness played a huge part in the process of getting to a point of thriving and peace.

“If someone’s hurt us we forgiven for ourselves and not for the person who caused the pain.


The aspect of the continual forgiveness process.


Every story of surviving is important.


What helped her most in the process of healing and the first barrier that stood in her way was stigma.


The crisis event that sparked clarity to get therapy to heal.


How talking it out helped her and gave her confidence, and she even spent some time traveling in Europe alone.


How she developed social anxiety problems and then came to overcome them.


Post-Traumatic Stress symptoms and high adrenaline responses.


Finding a safe place and an outside perspective to find space from the trauma and grow in self-awareness.


The impact on relationships, trust, and bonding.


Rebounding and developing good friendship and meeting her now-husband as she got well.


On deciding what to make public.


Becoming who you really are and meeting new people at that point.


We attract people who are healthier because we are healthier.


“You have to connect with people who aren’t going to try to hurt you and who are going support you.”


Creating a family of choice, the core people who will help you be most well.


Connecting unawares with people who remind you of old pain.


You are most vulnerable on the road to recovery.


Feed your mind with the right stuff that’s going to inspire and motivate you and shift your mindset and body.

Here are resources that helped Melissa.