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Are You Treating Your Spouse Like a Roommate?

Dr. Chris and Alisa Grace pose for the cover of The Art of Relationships Podcast.

Staying at home has forced a lot of people to spend time with their spouses. This can often result in your significant other feeling more like a roommate rather than a spouse. In this week's episode, Dr. Greg Smalley from Focus on the Family joins Chris and Tim to talk about the importance of being intentional and making small, daily connections with your spouse.

Speaker 1:    Thank you for joining us for another Art of Relationships podcast. In each episode, we work hard to bring you the latest research in psychology and communication theory to help you develop healthy relationships. We also have a lot of fun in the process. Ready to get started? Let's do it.

Chris Grace:    Well hey, welcome to another Art of Relationships podcast with Tim Muehlhoff.

Tim Muehlhoff:    It's great to be here, Chris, as always with Dr. Chris Grace, the co-founder of the Center for Marriage and Relationships.

Chris Grace:    And Tim, it's so fun to do podcasts together. Let's just dive right in. We've got some fun topics to cover. One, Tim, I think that we like to do is just the idea of bringing in guests. We've been doing that for a little while over the course, and sometimes you and I just get a chance to talk to some together and then other times we have some awesome guests come in and today's no exception with that, of course. Joining us is Dr. Greg Smalley from Focus on the Family. I'll probably give a whole bunch of bio about Greg and we'll put it up there on screen, but let me just on our podcast page. Greg, welcome to the podcast.

Greg Smalley:    Hey, thank you guys for having me. It's an honor. Chris and I go way, way back. I almost flunked out of my doctoral program because of Chris, so it's good that we can do this and I can get the truth out there.

Chris Grace:    Nah. And you're a Rosemead grad. If I remember correctly?

Greg Smalley:    I am. Yeah, yeah. When I showed up for classes, they informed me that I didn't have a undergrad social psychology class so they said, "Go take this class from a guy named Chris Grace."

Tim Muehlhoff:    No way.

Greg Smalley:    And I'm telling you to this day, Chris Grace is my favorite professor.

Tim Muehlhoff:    Nah.

Chris Grace:    Yes.

Tim Muehlhoff:    Chris, that would have been what? How long had you been at Biola?

Chris Grace:    Oh it was two, three years ago, easily. Yeah, it's been a long time. It was early on, Greg.

Greg Smalley:    Yeah. That's 95 probably.

Chris Grace:    Yeah, it probably was. Yep. And then just with you and Erin and Alisa and I, man, we just did so much together. So fun.

Greg Smalley:    We did.

Chris Grace:    To hang out with you guys, as you were finishing your PhD. We were newly PhDed out of Colorado State and just had gotten hired on.

Greg Smalley:    Yeah, we vacationed together one time in Hawaii. Again, another example of almost dying. Hopefully this goes much smoother than some of our other adventures together.

Chris Grace:    I think it's going to go a whole lot smoother.

Tim Muehlhoff:    Greg, we give our money to missions, so we don't go to Hawaii. But that sounds like a fun trip.

Greg Smalley:    Well, there are marriages that need help in Hawaii too. We just go where God leads.

Tim Muehlhoff:    I'm here, Lord. I'm here. Send them.

Chris Grace:    Well Greg, speaking of marriages and things like that, you have actually been working now at Focus on the Family for how long?

Greg Smalley:    Yeah. About 10 years. They brought Erin and I in to give leadership to their marriage efforts there and we've absolutely loved it. What an honor to be a part of Focus on the Family. And we've had so much fun all these years. Our kids now are a little bit older, so we're getting closer to that empty nest. We still have a seventh grader, so it's not like it's going to happen tomorrow, but Erin and I've been married about almost 29 years.

Tim Muehlhoff:    Oh that's great.

Chris Grace:    That's amazing.

Tim Muehlhoff:    And we're huge fans of Jim Daly. With a friend of mine, Rick Langer, we wrote a book called Winsome Persuasion and used Jim Daly as an example of what winsome persuasion can actually look like and be effective.

Chris Grace:    Oh wow.

Greg Smalley:    He's remarkable.

Tim Muehlhoff:    He is.

Greg Smalley:    Absolutely. Just what a joy it is to have him as a boss and man, just what God has done through his life and through Focus. It's we love being a part of it.

Chris Grace:    Well, Greg, we've been following not only Focus for a long time, but you guys as well. You guys, you and your wife Erin, have written so many amazing books and then just speaking, you and I've gotten a chance to do that together at different times or at least on similar platforms at colleges and universities. And so all that to say there's so much for all the listeners out there, it's Greg and Erin Smalley and just go look at, it would take us forever just to read all the titles of their books, but also all of the things that you guys do.

    Today, Greg, I think one of the more recent publications that you guys have done together is called Reconnected and the subtitle is, Moving from Roommates to Soulmates in Your Marriage. And let's talk about that today. Tim, when you think?

Tim Muehlhoff:    Yeah, sounds great.

Chris Grace:    It's a great book that you and Erin were able to write together. As we get started, what's that like? You guys have been doing this for a while, but is it hard to write together? Speak together? Or which one do you enjoy more?

Greg Smalley:    We love doing all of it together. This particular book came out right in March. Last March when we all were quarantined with COVID, which is by the way, a great time to release a book.

Tim Muehlhoff:    Because everybody's reading.

Greg Smalley:    Yeah. That came out and yet at the same time, couples being stuck together and trying to figure out how to do life, not being able to go out of the house and all those things. It was God's timing for that to come out. But we love, we speak together. We do marriage events and that's probably of all the things that we do my most favorite.

Tim Muehlhoff:    Is that right?

Greg Smalley:    Of course all that's been shut down. But just last week, we were invited to do, I think since March the first live events. We went and spoke at a church until the little marriage event that was limited to a 100 people, all that kind of thing. It was good social distancing with masks and all that, but it was fun.

    What's interesting for Erin and I, when the quarantine hit, we realized a couple weeks in, that we just, we weren't connecting as a couple. And as we really started to talk, we realized that when we typically do about 12 to 15 events together every year and what we do is we relied on those kinds of experiences. We're traveling, we're in a hotel, we're eating out at cool restaurants and we're getting to minister together. And what we realized was how much of that really kept us connected and kept our intimacy strong and all of that.

    And so when that went away, we realized that we had to figure something else out because usually when we were home, we were investing in friends and kids and jobs and all of that thinking. Well, in a couple weeks, we'll be at this spot or that spot. We'll connect. And so it was a wake up call for us to go well, okay, that's not available so how do we connect? And we were doing so much media, so many media interviews on this new book that we finally went, this is actually helping us probably more than anybody else.

Tim Muehlhoff:    That's funny because me and Noreen, as well as Chris and Alisa speak for family life marriage conferences and all of those have been shelved. We haven't done one almost all year, but home hasn't been a place of connection because we've got three adult kids who live with us, one's trying to pay down debt.

Greg Smalley:    Oh wow.

Tim Muehlhoff:    We have one who's doing law school virtually and then we have one who just graduated. It's funny, I totally agree that it's those times away at the conferences where Noreen and I connected, but home has been crazy and nobody ever goes to bed and me and Noreen are never alone. And so COVID, the mere fact of COVID, doesn't necessarily mean you're going to connect. You could just be roommates because now we've got three additional roommates that are right on top of us. Unless we're intentional, that's not going to make any difference, the fact that we're home together.

Greg Smalley:    It really doesn't. Part of what we had to solve is we have four kids. Three of them are out of the house and our youngest daughter, Annie, who's in the seventh grade, she hates now that that all her siblings are gone and so she wants to sleep in our room. I'll come in and see her, she's snuck a mattress, a little mattress in, and piles the pillows from our bed on there and then sleep slides underneath there thinking, well, they'll never notice that I'm in the room, which I keep telling her, man, if your mom and I start being intimate, that'll cost you.

Chris Grace:    That's going to work. That's going to work.

Greg Smalley:    That may not be the best strategy, but yeah, we've had to figure that out because I think now that everybody has spent so much time together and yet you're right, there's so much going on at home that it's hard when we can't go out on a date night or things like that. It's been harder I think for people to really figure out how to connect. I remember when the word came out, okay, you're quarantined, everybody's shelter in place. Erin and I were talking and went, you know what? This is going to be really cool. One of the things we've talked about doing, but just stayed busy, was cooking together. It was the first day we're together, we meet up in the kitchen to prepare a meal together and we ended up getting into this huge fight over how to correctly brown ground beef. And you would never know this, but apparently I'm a moron.

Tim Muehlhoff:    You did it wrong.

Greg Smalley:    And was doing it wrong as if there is several ways, I guess, that you could brown the ground beef and it wasn't the right way that Erin wanted me to so we get in this huge argument. And I'm finally like, "Fine, then you do it." And I just sat there pouting going, well, that took all of seven hours for us to totally disconnect now that we're finally together under the same roof quarantined. I don't know about you guys, but it didn't start off real well for us.

Chris Grace:    Well Greg, what advice are you going to then take away from or give to, that listeners can take away from not only your Reconnected book, but even experiences like this during COVID. This is an awesome time for this book to come out because that notion of being disconnected, you guys use Song of Solomon 2:15 throughout the book, catch all the foxes, those foxes before they ruin the vineyard of love for the great vines are blossoming and those foxes that can get in there. And whether it's cooking together and you just feel like you said, your feelings got hurt and your pouting. Pouting, that's a hard word, sorry, that's what you said.

Greg Smalley:    It felt very shaming, keep going though.

Tim Muehlhoff:    Wake up, boy. Stop feeling like you.

Chris Grace:    But do you ever feel though that in this kind of situation, a lot of people can relate to this? The time they had together, they're going to sometimes look back with regret because they didn't use it well. They didn't reconnect and so what advice, man, from your book and just from your experiences?

Greg Smalley:    Yeah. What Erin and I started hearing a lot of is that we would hear from couples that they were, it's kind of like this, we love each other. We're committed to each other for a lifetime, but we feel like married roommates. And so it's like we're alone together. And we kind of started going, why? What's going on? If you guys feel that way, is it different than if Erin and I feel that way? And so we really started to interview couples and we figured out and then we did some research with about a 1,000 couples around this and discovered there were probably about 11 big issues that happened that can create sort of this idea that we just drift apart slowly over time.

    Because I think people fall in love fast and then there's a slow fade that can occur. And it's those little foxes, those kinds of 11 behaviors I think that can cause people to feel like roommates. One of the ones that we've noticed has been really hard through COVID is something that, and I think it's chapter three in our book, it's something we call work talk. And what it looks like is that Erin and I will get into this habit to where, because we're together, we're aware of everything that we end up talking, but more so like a business meeting. We're administrating our life and our family. We're talking about schedules and to do lists, especially with our seventh grader now being home almost full-time trying to do school online. And it's insane how much Erin and I have to talk about, because my wife's a marriage therapist and so, okay you've got to see clients then. Okay. I'll help her here. And what we started realizing is that we were administrating our marriage to death.

Chris Grace:    And it's not like these aren't bad. Some are trivial, some are important, but Greg, then I think couples really relate to that. They just simply relate on that level. They're administrating all of the time, instead of maybe something that can bring hope or healing or it's life giving. I think that's what you talked about. Tell us, how do you help couples who are struggling with, we just meet and talk about things they're trivial, they're day to day, but they're not life giving. What do you do? And how do you do that? And you were about to say you and Erin tried something.

Greg Smalley:    Well, because the problem is, is that the more we end up talking about the business side of running our family, what it creates is it's almost becomes boring and the fear for a lot of couples is if we actually do talk, all we're going to do is talk about schedules and to do lists and budgets anyway so why are we even talking? The point is and Chris, you kind of said this. We have to talk about those things, but those things end up monopolizing our communication. And so what one of the things for Erin and I, we quickly realized is that all that business meeting work talk is going to happen without us even trying so we had to be intentional to do something called inner life communication. That's when we actually get to talk about emotions and dreams and hopes and fears and what's stressing you out.

    And so one of the things, when we got quarantined, what we started doing intentionally because see, you have to be intentional here. And by the way, the research shows that if you take just 10 minutes every day and have an inner life conversation, that creates a really strong marriage. We're not talking an hour, we're talking 10 minutes.

Chris Grace:    10 minutes. Describe for a listener, I understand it because I taught you this principle when you were a student of mine, but tell the listeners what you mean by an inner life conversation.

Greg Smalley:    Yeah. Erin and I started going on a walk every day and what we did is that we're not talking about the kids or schedules or budgets. What we're doing is how Erin and I do this, we'll say, "What's been the high of your day and the low of your day?" Inner life means you're talking about emotions. You're talking about, what are some of your hopes? And what are you dreaming about? What's on your bucket list? What's most stressing you out? What are some of the big losses that you've experienced through COVID? It's exploring what's going on inside because we all want to be deeply known by our spouse. And yet we can lose that because of all this administration that takes place. And so Erin and I simply for us, it's been great. We just go on a walk and then we'll ask each other, "What's been the high of your day yesterday? What was the low?" And then we just talk about those things. And again, 10 minutes, if you do that, it has made such a big difference for us in our marriage.

Chris Grace:    Well, Greg, I think 10 minutes like that, not only as you guys talk about in your book could be so life giving, but they can be sacred. There are conversations that some of us, all of us have had with somebody and they didn't have to be hour, two hour, five hour long conversations to be pretty powerful as far as what we would call sacred. That moment where we kind of hear each other's heart could be a pretty powerful moment. And that gives, I remember talking with Alisa and just that insight into her heart when she talked about what she dreamt about wanting to do in life and what gave her, for her, I just said, it's similar to that question that you asked Erin that was, "If you could do anything? Or what would be a dream one day that you would like to be able to do?" And she answered, she's says, "Chris, I just love adventure. I love going and doing and trying new adventures and being able to do fun things."

Greg Smalley:    I love that.

Chris Grace:    And I think Greg, that gave me a quick insight into what she was like. You know what I did the next week or so, probably wasn't the best. I decided to take the family on an adventure and I didn't tell them where we were going. And so she's like, "Where are we going?" I said, "Just pack."

Greg Smalley:    Is this like the Griswolds?

Chris Grace:    Get in the car.

Greg Smalley:    Going to Wallyworld.

Chris Grace:    Next thing she says, "Chris, I love adventures, but please tell me ahead of time where we're going so I can pack appropriately and plan." But those moments can be really sacred can't they?

Greg Smalley:    They really can because what's you're doing is that you're taking time to explore what's really going on down deep and that's how we really get to know one another. And it's all the administration of our marriages that I think makes us feel like roommates. And that can be such a big difference. I know for Erin and I, we've also through COVID, one of the things we've learned to do is to keep talking about the losses that are happening. When COVID first hit for us, our son was a senior, I think about the thousands of hours that we've spent it practice, in the stands watching him play basketball. Well their high school basketball team made it to the final four and they were favored to win. They were going to be first time state champions and that game never got played.

Chris Grace:    A loss.

Greg Smalley:    And so just one tiny loss compared to some people lost jobs and health issues in you name it, just the independence. We were supposed to be in South Africa and that was going to be Garrison's our senior in high school, his graduation gift. None of that stuff took place. And so Erin and I've been really intentional to ask because it's still happening by the way, we're still constantly losing things. And so we've just been really intentional along our walk just to go, "You know what? What's a recent loss you've experienced? What's that been like?" Not to problem solve, but just to be able to, just to care and go, "Man, that really matters that that happened to you."

Tim Muehlhoff:    Yeah. That's good. Yeah. I was supposed to be in Cancun this weekend on a film shoot as a model and it just never happened. Greg, why are you laughing? Why?

Greg Smalley:    Because I can picture that.

Chris Grace:    It's not a very good picture, is it? No, I'm trying to forget that picture.

Greg Smalley:    Yeah, I'm sure we'll see it though in Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition.

Chris Grace:    Hey Greg, let me ask you this question. This is the pushback we get. Let's say a couple has been talking about family. They're really doing the organizational talk. And now they hear a speaker say, "Now take 10 minutes and talk about hopes, dreams." And they're like, we don't have anything. We go for a 10 minute walk, we're done in a minute because my spouse won't engage or it's so different for us. We just don't know what to do. It feels so awkward. What would be your advice to a couple of how do you prime the pump to kind of get there because they're struggling?

Greg Smalley:    Yeah. This is a great question. Do exactly what I did. And I'm not making this up. Just Google the phrase, conversation starters for couples and I'm telling you, you will find, they're all over the place. And I took a list of 200 and I simply copied them, put them on my notes section on my smartphone. And then when Erin and I, if it's on the walk or we do this a lot over around dinner, because Annie our 13 year old, she loves to have these conversations. But honestly, I'm not that clever. I'm not creative enough. What's your high and low? I can remember that one, but downloading these conversations starters, they're so easy. We just, we pull them up and then you start asking and they're great because again, never in a million years, would I think of that particular question. And it just gets us into such good conversation that it's the perfect way to prime the pump. Just Google conversation starters for couples and then put them on someone's phone and you've got them.

Chris Grace:    Greg, I also understand that you Googled that in one time and you Googled in spiritual questions as well and what came up?

Greg Smalley:    Lo and behold, Dr. Chris and Alisa Grace's 30 questions that every couples ask each other to strengthen their spiritual relationship. Yeah. I'm reading, going, man, these are really good. I texted him, said, "Can I get permission to put these in a project that we're working on?" And a million dollar fee later, we've been able to do that.

Chris Grace:    That's right. Yeah, those are good. It's a such a good idea to have those questions. And I think Greg, to have them handy, in fact everybody, you carry your phone with you while you're going. I think you could just kind of pull it out and say, "Hey, here's a good question. Let's do that." That's awesome.

Greg Smalley:    It really is that simple?

Tim Muehlhoff:    Well, I literally just did it. I just pulled it up and here are some for getting to know your partner. What's your ideal way to spend a vacation? What makes you dislike a person? Do you think you are a confident person? Why or why not? What about yourself are you most proud of?

Chris Grace:    Tim and Greg, as you guys are reading that and kind of maybe, I don't know, suggesting that this would be a good thing. It would seem like you have to go in also very thoughtfully. If you ask that question, it can arouse and bring up some pretty deep thing. Are you a confident person? And if they're not and now all of a sudden, in other words, we really have to try, I would think, to also make it a very safe place. What do you think, Tim?

Tim Muehlhoff:    And that's why some, I'm looking at these questions and you're right, Chris, some of them are like, man, that seems like diving into the deep end. But here are some questions that I think would prime the pump. What musical instrument do you wish you could play? That seems like, you know what I mean? Like a safe one. What's the nicest compliment you've ever received?

Greg Smalley:    It wasn't on this show, by the way.

Tim Muehlhoff:    Hey, you know what the nicest compliment, Greg, I ever got was? A woman walked up to me in church and she said, "Hey, I really love your podcast, you and the other guy." We thought about changing the name of the podcast to Tim and the Other Guy. Oh gosh.

Greg Smalley:    That's like, when people come up to me and they say, "You changed my life." And I go, "Wow, that's huge. Why?" I love the book, Five Love Languages that you wrote. It was so amazing. Me and Gary Chapman. I had nothing to do with the book, but it is a good book.

Chris Grace:    That is so funny. There's another one we've always recommended too, and we'll put an end to it here, but is the 32 questions to intimacy or 34. You could just questions to intimacy and they listed these and they go from very minor, really quick conversation starters, priming the pump to very deep ones by the time you get down to number 34 and 35. Greg such good advice. There's other things in that book, again, we're talking about the book Reconnected: Moving From Roommates to Soulmates and which chapter for you has meant the most? Or do you love? And if you had to give a PDF of a chapter to a couple, which one, all of these, gosh, I could imagine it'd be hard to pick one, but is any one more relevant for you? Or more powerful?

Greg Smalley:    Yeah. I love chapter two, is all dealing with busyness. We're all busy. We have a whole lot going on and we talk about really the solution to busyness is to pay attention. Something that a great researcher, you guys are familiar with his work, Dr. John Gottman, he talks about these things called bids for connection. And here's a simple way to describe this. The other day, Erin are driving down the road and my favorite vehicle, if I could have any vehicle, it would be a Ford F150 Raptor. That is my thing. And so we're driving down and I see one coming our way. And I say to Erin, "Oh look, hey look, there's a Raptor." Now in that moment, I'm actually making a bid to connect with my wife. I'm telling her about something that interests me. She has a choice. She can either ignore that, keep texting away on her phone or she can even move against that and go, "Oh, that's stupid. Like we could ever afford that. Why do you even look at that?" Or she could respond to it and that's what she did.

    And she said, "Ooh, really? Why do you like it? Is it fast?" "Oh man, it does zero to 60 in six seconds." That was maybe a 15 second interaction. The point is, all of us make these little bids for connection constantly, hundreds of times throughout the day. And especially now that we're all locked in together. But as we do that, those create these little micro moments for connection. Those things start to add up. And why this is one of my favorite, it's because over time now I really noticed, and I've trained myself to watch that when Erin kind of makes a little bid for connection, I always try to respond to her.

    And it can be anything. She loves to bargain shop. And so she'll come home with a bag full of stuff, which I could care less about. I don't like to shop. I shop once a year, that kind of thing. But she'll say, she'll hold up an outfit, which is now she's making a bid to connect. And she'll say, "Guess how much the original price was?" Well, I've learned to go, "99 bucks." "No, it was a 103." I'm thinking really? That's a big difference? Okay. All right. 103. She goes, "Guess what I paid for it?" And I've learned, guess under about 10 bucks because that's what really makes her happy. "I don't know, nine bucks." "No, not even close eight, $8.53." See in that moment, I had a choice. I could either go, "I don't care. Who cares? You got a bargain. Awesome way to go." Or I can actually just quickly respond to it and those things add up throughout the day.

    And Erin and I, now we even say to each other, "Eh, you made a bid for connection right then and there." We've just gotten really good at that. And it just within the business to where you're like, well, we can't have a date night or we can't even get out of the house or the kids, you were talking about someone's always around us. Just start to notice these little bids and respond to them and watch how those things add up throughout the day and it keeps you connected.

Chris Grace:    And another kind of compliment to that is simply noticing other times and I think Greg, it's just a part of paying attention to your spouse at certain times, but it also means, Erin had to do some very quick analysis of this is a moment for Greg. This is something he gets excited about and could just be even a bid for attention. It could just be a look, it could be a smile. It could be an elbow. It could be a shared story or a joke or an inside joke that's a kind of a bid to say, "You and I, we're together in this." And it could be so powerful for couples just to grab that one little concept of what it means to pay attention to a bid.

Tim Muehlhoff:    And boy, Greg, I'm thinking of teenage relationships where those are few and far between. Connection points with your teenagers can just get really hard. And I have a son, we got a rescue dog. In the midst of COVID, we have a small house, three adult children, me and my wife so let's get a dog.

Greg Smalley:    That's smart, yeah.

Tim Muehlhoff:    But we got We got a rescue dog named Raleigh and Michael who's our most reserved child said, "I just love this dog." You know what I mean? That it to me was like, hey, why? What is it you love? And he goes, "Oh, man, I don't know. She's so much fun and just love to cuddle with her." And those are all moments of connection right there.

Greg Smalley:    They really are. It's perfect.

Tim Muehlhoff:    It is. Greg, so I love that frame of reference of looking for those and jumping on them rather than saying, "Oh, I hate NASCAR. Oh, the British Bake Off, I hate that. I'll never watch that. That's just stupid. I'm not going to do it." You're missing all those great opportunities.

Greg Smalley:    You really are. I was just going to say that my 13 year old daughter this morning, so she gets up and I'm in the kitchen and she goes, "Dad listen to my dream." Well, I'm telling you, one of the things I most hate is hearing about someone's dream. I'm like it's a dream.

Tim Muehlhoff:    And they go into detail.

Greg Smalley:    Why do I care?

Tim Muehlhoff:    Oh, my word.

Greg Smalley:    They go into great detail. And so she's kind of laying out this whole thing. And in my mind, I'm going, this is a bid for connection so just respond. Just listen.

Tim Muehlhoff:    So good.

Greg Smalley:    Yeah. And Erin, it seems like the two girls that are in my house right now love to tell me about their dreams from the night before. And so I just listen and go, "Wow. That's quite disturbing and scary, but yeah, good."

Tim Muehlhoff:    And I'll be honest, Greg, my talking about my modeling was a bid for connection and you laughed at it. You laughed at it, Greg.

Greg Smalley:    No, I was laughing with you.

Tim Muehlhoff:    You did not go with it. You didn't say.

Greg Smalley:    No, I was connecting. We were laughing together and I was picturing you on the front of a Sport Illustrated swimsuit edition.

Tim Muehlhoff:    You didn't ask what swimsuit, you didn't ask what.

Greg Smalley:    I just had eaten so I was just trying to respect your audience. I didn't think they wanted to hear those noises, regurgitation.

Tim Muehlhoff:    No, but I love that, man. What a paradigm shift. If you adopted that and looked for those bids for connection, that would man, that would, and by the way, where doesn't that apply? We're talking in-laws, parents, neighbors.

Chris Grace:    Work colleagues.

Tim Muehlhoff:    Coworkers.

Chris Grace:    That's right.

Tim Muehlhoff:    That's an amazing frame of reference of, I'm going to find these bids of connection and engage you.

Chris Grace:    Tim, let's do this. Let's keep talking and Greg, I think we're going to have you on another podcast. We're going to just keep talking about this, your work, your ministry and your book.

Greg Smalley:    Yeah, as long as you pay that fee, I'm good to come back any time.

Tim Muehlhoff:    Okay, we're done.

Greg Smalley:    Sign me up. I'd love to.

Chris Grace:    Greg, it's nice talking to you.

Greg Smalley:    Well it's great being with you guys.

Chris Grace:    Yeah. Thanks. Hey, for all of our listeners, make sure you check out that book Reconnected with Greg and Erin Smalley. You'll find it on our website as a recommended book. We also have other things that you can check out on our website and that's, marriage mentoring we got a great discount if you bundle that up with the video that we provide. If you don't know about marriage mentoring and you want to know more about it, check that out at our website. And also we have other kinds of videos, courses, art and science, the art and science of relationships and free relationship advice too, we offer to couples that may be struggling and interested in some of these concepts. Hey, check that out. Greg. Let's talk soon again. Good to have you.

Greg Smalley:    Thank you. Thank you.

Speaker 1:    Have you ever been asked to mentor a young married couple, but were afraid to say yes? Thankfully the Center for Marriage and Relationships is here to help. The CMR's marriage mentoring curriculum covers important topics like communication, forgiveness and the ever important sexual intimacy. It even provides tips on when and how to refer a couple for professional help. Sound interesting? Check out the resources page on our website at