Can you help my wife / husband / partner?

“Can you help my wife / husband / partner …?”


If Tip & I had a dollar for each time we’ve been asked this (also about roommates, family members, relatives etc)…well let’s say we’d be able to take a very nice vacation from work.

Of course the answer is yes – we’re going to trial & run some partners courses later in the year and already offer coaching on this – but more on that later at the bottom of this post.

Let me digress for a moment:

I once met a happy Swami. He is a friend of my father in law’s, who knew him well before his incarnation as Swami. Over dinner he was talking about mantras and the like. After dinner I said “Oh, can you give [my Mr.] a mantra?”. He looked me in the eye and asked me “Do you have one?”. “No,” I answered truthfully, and tried to bring back the conversation to him giving my Mr. one. “Perhaps you would like one?” he said simply.

This story really did happen to me and here’s the thing. Often we want the people around us to change. Maybe they’re messy, maybe they’re too neat. Maybe they give everything away or have a closet filled to the brim with stuff that doesn’t or hasn’t seen the light of day but they can neither bare to part with it and complain daily that they have nothing to wear. Maybe all the house work has fallen on you. Maybe they have these really annoying habits (they probably do…but guess what, it’s likely so do you). Maybe they talk about things you don’t like or have opinions you don’t like…

I’m no Swami so I get caught up in this thinking often (especially around my little one’s naptime) but it comes back to the simplest of things:

We can’t change people. We can only change ourselves.

(Hey you rolling your eyes, I know I know, I’m rolling mine with you…)

andy goldsworthy

It is true though. But, and this is a big but. There is also something extra that I (& Tip) think is often left out of this sentence – that we can also change the environment around us.

That is, we can create conditions in our environments that make the changes we are seeking more likely. It doesn’t have to be a major change either. Sometimes we just need to move a little.

This is one of the secrets we’ve uncovered through apartment diet. It’s not magic exactly but sometimes it feels like it.

The secret: It’s easier to make the changes we are seeking in our physical spaces than in our heads.

It works like this:
it’s really hard to change your own mind about something. And even harder to change someone else’s. But we can almost certainly move a couch we share for a week (or an hour).

More than just acting positive, what if the physical space you shared was more positive? What if your side of the closet and lots of other areas of the house that are within your control (which can also read as your partner doesn’t care either way) change to exemplify the feelings you would like to convey?

“And when things start to happen, don’t worry, don’t stew.
Just go right along, you’ll start happening too!”

– Dr Seuss, Oh the places You’ll Go

I’d like to add, somewhat ‘miraculously’ – they’ll start happening too.
We’ve had partners suddenly help. We’ve seen partners ‘spontaneously’ build treehouses and cubby’s. Renovate their offices. Mount furniture on walls. Paint walls. Throw out stuff…Kids too.

This type of change…it’s contagious.

So what changes do you want to make to your homes and lives?

PS Yes of course we can help! It just may be that unless they want to do it, or do it with you, we start by helping & working with you. Contact us & let’s start.


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