This morning in the car I listened to the one & only Dr. Sue Johnson speak on HuffPost Live about how love makes sense.
I have had the privilege of training with Sue Johnson and have seen her present live numerous times, and every time this woman speaks, I am filled with more reverence for her work, her message, her candor and her brilliance.
This is an interview that you don’t want to miss.
Skip the gym if you have to and take 27 minutes to watch it.
Here are some take-aways to convince you to watch:
Research on young career women showed that when they had supportive and loving relationships, they were more likely to reach their career goals. In other words, they were more successful.
A strong relationship translates to a stronger career and business.
We are more resilient, inclined to take risks and put ourselves out there in a big way in the world, and be more independent when we have a safe and secure connection to a precious other.
Love is the best health insurance policy out there.
Sure, continue to reach for your green juice, but don’t forget to reach for your partner as well. A strong relationship contributes to your health more than the latest exercise fad or kale.
Your relationship is a plant.
Water it. Make it a priority. Take time to be in it. I love how Sue mentioned that you won’t be on your deathbed thinking about how much Facebook interaction you had or how much chard you ate, but you’ll be thinking of how you loved and were loved.
Despite how much we hear about loving ourselves first, it doesn’t work that way.
From the minute we are born, we learn about who we are and how worthy we are based on others’ reflections of us. Fortunately, this can be transformed for those who didn’t see the best reflections, but it is only transformed through our relationships with others.
The science of interpersonal neurobiology only backs this claim up – our brains are wired to be connected and literally have neurons within them that only exist in relation to others. Our identities are actually more about “we” than “I,” despite what we are all conditioned to believe.
Rejection from your significant other hurts.
Literally. Sue didn’t mention this in this particular interview, but the same area of your brain responsible for encoding physical pain is what handles physical pain (the anterior cingulate, for all you nerds out there). And it hurts both men and women.
Men have it rough today: In many ways, we have done our men wrong.
Women have expectations of them to be emotionally open and available and yet they have been conditioned from an early age to be out of touch with their emotions.
Thankfully, it doesn’t have to be that way, and it doesn’t necessarily take years of work for most men to learn how to open up and be more connected to their partners. A little help can go a long way in this department.
Sex is best in the context of a strong emotional bond.
Despite culture’s obsession with fast and furious sex that grows stale the older a couple gets, Sue likens sex without an emotional bond to dancing without music. It’s flat, one dimensional, and not really fun or exciting at all. She notes that the best sex happens in relationships in which there are strong and secure emotional bonds. One night stands are not nearly all as they are cracked up to be.
The best sex happens in stable and committed partnerships, and it gets better with time if that emotional bond between two people deepens, like a good wine.
Even single people are more resilient in the world because of love.
You don’t have to be in a relationship to experience the power of love. Sue speaks of the Dalai Lama and his constant referring to his mother as a source of strength. Single or not, it helps us all to have constructs of those who have loved us and believed in us in our mind.
Keep those images strong and call upon them as needed; they will help you be your best self.
And lastly, love is no longer a mystery.
Sue debunks the widespread myth that love is some strange phenomenon that you happen to fall in or out of. She has cracked the code of love and is spreading the word about how it’s possible for us all to get love right. It’s simply how we are wired.
Watch the interview here, and let me know what you think
My brief summary does not do justice to its juiciness.
You can read more about her amazing work in her book, Love Sense: The Revolutionary New Science of Romantic Relationships.
Because of her groundbreaking research and creation of the most successful form of couples therapy in the world, we now have a road map that points us in the direction of love that works as it is supposed to.
Few receive this map growing up. Sue would be the first to admit that she certainly didn’t. But because of her work and years spent training professionals all over the world, we now have the tools to help individuals and couples create a love that works in their own lives.
I am so fired up by her work and so grateful to be a part of this revolution that she is at the forefront of.
Cheers to thriving in business and love…because it just makes sense!
P.S. Let me know what you think of her interview below!