What You’ll Learn from this Episode:
Welcome to the Rich Coach Club, the podcast that teaches you how to build your dream coaching practice and how to significantly increase your income. If you're a coach and you're determined to start making more money, this show is for you. I'm master certified life coach Susan Hyatt, and I'm psyched for you to join me on this journey.
Alright, coaches. Do you ever feel like, when your business is thriving, then other parts of your life start suffering? Let’s say you have a really strong month in your coaching business. You’ve got clients pouring in, sales are up. Financially, things are looking great.
But meanwhile, you’re so focused on your coaching business that you’ve neglected your body, neglected your friendships, or even your marriage. Or maybe it’s the opposite; your relationship is flourishing but your business is not. It’s so frustrating, right?
One of life’s eternal questions is, how can I build a thriving relationship and a thriving business? How can you have both at the same time? Is this even possible? And if so, how? What’s the secret?
So, I believe absolutely, yes, it is possible. You can have both, of course. I didn’t always have both. That’s for damn sure. But I do now. And our guest on today’s show, Maggie Reyes, she’s got both, and you can have both too.
You can create the coaching practice of your dreams and the partnership of your dreams. It doesn’t have to be either-or. It can be both-and. And on todays episode, we’re going to talk about how to do this. Keep listening. And, by the way, on this episode, we’re getting into some grown-ass woman topics, including sex, divorce, and other grownup things. So, if you’re listening with kiddos in the car, be mindful of that. You’ve been warned. Here we go.
Alright, so, there was a time, I think it was like 17 years ago, I was convinced that I needed to divorce Scott Hyatt. Okay, so let me paint you a picture of this time in my life, way back then. I was a burned out, exhausted realtor. That was my previous career prior to becoming a coach; residential real estate.
I had two little kids at home, five and under. They were like three and five. I did not take good care of myself. I never exercised. I ate fast food multiple times a day. I didn’t invest in my heath. I treated myself like garbage, frankly.
I didn’t feel confident about my body. I didn’t like how I looked or felt. I didn’t’ enjoy my career. Basically, I didn’t enjoy my life. But rather than turn inward and confront my own issues, I became convinced that Scott, the silver fox, my husband, he was the problem.
I convinced myself that, if I wasn’t married anymore, then everything would change. If I wasn’t married anymore, I told myself, I could have fun. I would be free and happy and liberated. Sunshine would pour down, angels would sing, my problems would be solved. Divorce seemed like the only viable solution in my mind.
So, for several months, I contemplated divorce. And then, one day, I got a recommendation in my real estate office for the best divorce attorney in town. So, I called this local attorney to discuss filing for divorce. But, by a strange twist of serendipity, Scott Hyatt happened to be in the same attorney’s waiting room to see someone else about a real estate deal, commercial real estate deal at the exact moment I placed the call.
So, Scott was chatting with this other attorney about something entirely different. He was there asking a real estate question. And ring, ring, ring, my call comes through and the receptionist announces, like, “Hey, Mr. Attorney, Susan Hyatt’s on line two.”
And so, Scott heard that and he immediately stood up, got in his car, drive to my real estate office, which was, let’s say, 10 minutes away tops. And when I hung up the phone, he was standing in my office with his arms folded saying, “How about, instead of hiring a divorce attorney, we hire a marriage counsellor instead?”
I mean, what are the odds, right? I’m just trying to get a divorce here. I’m like, okay. So, I begrudgingly agreed to try. This was one of those fork in the road moments in life, a pivotal moment. I could have chosen divorce. Instead, I chose to stay in my marriage and work on it and work on myself too.
And ultimately, we decided to stay together and we decided to reinvent our relationship and build something better than ever before. So, we’ve been married 27 years now and we’re still going strong. And I can honestly say that we grow stronger together every single year.
So, you might be wondering, “Alright, so, what happened? How come your marriage feels better now than it did before? What changed exactly?” Honestly, the main thing that changed was me. I changed. I became more assertive. I started speaking up and asking for what I needed and wanted. I stopped blaming Scott for my unhappiness and started taking responsibility for things I wanted in my life.
So many things changed, but there are two changes that were especially powerful. Number one, I stopped waiting for Scott to rescue me or invite me or plan things for me. I started doing these things for myself.
One big example is travel. I used to get so annoyed that Scott never seemed interested in traveling overseas. This seems to petty now, but I would wait for him to plan a trip, which he never did. And so, I learned to stop waiting and just start saying yes to myself.
If I wanted to visit Paris, then I would book a flight and go to Paris and he would come or not, whatever. I was going to have an amazing time regardless. I stopped waiting for my husband or anyone else to build my dream life. I realized, I needed to do that for myself.
So, this is a major life lesson that applies to relationships and to your business too. So, stop waiting to be rescued. Stop waiting to be invited. If you want something, do it. Go get it. Find a way to make it happen and don’t wait to be invited to the party. Throw your own party, build your own stage, buy your own damn plane ticket. Create what you crave.
When you become a go-getter like this, it improves your marriage and your business both at the same time. So, you start getting more of everything you want. And, number two, I got really serious about self-care. So many marriages and businesses crumble, I’m not kidding, due to a lack of self-care.
If you’re neglecting your mind, neglecting your body, not getting enough sleep, not eating well, not taking good care of yourself, then this is going to negatively impact your marriage and your income, for sure. You must take care of yourself. It’s seriously one of the biggest acts of violence I see on a daily basis.
And once I got seriously committed to self-care, my marriage became so much better. I became more confident, I had more energy, my sex drive went up. I felt more present with my husband and kids. I felt more joyful and creative. Everything changed at home and in my career.
So, the moral of the story is, if you feel unhappy about your marriage or business or both, you might think, “I need to do something radical. I need to get a divorce,” or, “I need to shut down my business and start all over again.”
But, before you make a major decision like that, try turning inward and doing some work on yourself first. Work on your mindset. Strongly commit to self-care. Set some new boundaries with your spouse or clients or both. And ultimately, this isn’t about changing your mindset to accept abusive behavior. I’m not saying that at all.
If you’re in an abusive relationship, emotionally or physically, obviously, the boundary there could definitely be getting the hell out. So, divorce might be the right option for you. But I’m just saying, before you leave it, let’s see what happens when you stay and work on you.
I wanted to project all the responsibility onto Scott. He was responsible. And ultimately, it was me. It was me. The ingredients that build a strong partnership; boundaries, communication, self-care to keep yourself feeling energized, pleasure, fun, these are the same ingredients that build a strong business. It’s all the same stuff. And it all starts with you.
Okay, to wrap up this pep-talk, I asked my husband Scott to share his biggest piece of advice on marriage in 30 words or less. And here’s what he said. So, first, he said, “Support your wife in her endeavors. Pay attention to the little things. And don’t get wrapped up in stupid stuff.”
So, I had to say, what’s stupid stuff? And he was like, “Well, for example, I was fine with the lights in the foyer, but you’re replacing them. And I don’t really like the lights you’re replacing them with. But I’m not going to sweat the small stuff. You like them, so it’s okay.” So that was funny.
And then, he was like, “And each person has their distinct differences and that’s what makes them them.” And I’m like, “Well, what do you see as our distinct differences?” And then he started listing all kinds of hilarious things about how I don’t like it when he crunches ice. You guys, hilarious.
But he talked about how our differences, we make each other better. And if you embrace differences, it can grow you as a human. And so, I was like, “Aww.” He said, “You make me a better person, and that’s my favorite thing about being married to you.” So, aww, Scott Hyatt.
So, it’s basically, support each other, don’t get wrapped up in what’s not important, embrace each other’s differences. And then, he lastly said, “And just be nice.” Which I thought was cute. That’s so Scott Hyatt. Thank you, Scott. And I wholeheartedly agree.
Building a thriving relationship and building a thriving business, these are two of the most challenging projects I promise, you can undertake as a human being. The most challenging, but also the most rewarding. It’s hard, it’s joyful, it’s messy, it’s worth it. And if you want both, you can have both. And both can feed and fuel each other in unexpected ways. And that is your pep-talk of the week.
And now, I’m moving into the part of the show where I give shoutouts to you. Thank you to all you amazing listeners. You have no idea what it means to me to get feedback from you like this one. So, Leticia left me a five-start review on Apple Podcasts.
And she wrote, “Mondays are my favorite because, when I get off work, I get to listen to Rich Coach Club. I love the honest no-nonsense but always loving way Susan talks about life and business. Some episodes, I find myself going back again and again when I need to remind myself of something. Susan is the person you want in your ear, iPhone, and life.”
Oh, thank you so much. And you may not have heard this in a previous episode. But I am doing a prize drawing for people who submit reviews and then let us know about it. You’re going to go into a drawing for a free $2000 In Demand program. In Demand is my newest digital product. It’s amazing. People are reporting record sales by using the advice and the techniques and the strategies in In Demand.
So, if you want to be in the drawing, leave us a review and let us know about it. Thanks for the love. I love you right back.
Alright, I’m so stoked to introduce you to Maggie Reyes. So, Maggie and I go way back. We’ve known each other, you’ll hear in the episode, since they started letting old people on the Facebook.
Maggie is a life coach, a marriage mentor. She has been a contributor to the number one marriage website in the world, The Happy Wives Club. She’s the author of a new book. It’s called Questions for Couples. It’s a journal that has 400 questions for couples to answer together.
She’s been featured in brides’ magazines and a ton of other places. Basically, she’s a total boss who’s built a thriving coaching practice and a thriving marriage at the same time. And you’ll hear in just a moment that Maggie is literally a ray of sunshine. She’s so warm, so welcoming, so kind. She’s pone of those people that just radiates and oozes love.
On her website, Maggie writes, “More than anything in the world, I care about love and keeping that engaged connected feeling fresh and alive and blooming for your whole life.” This old lady who’s been married 27 years is like, “Dang it, how beautiful is that?” Without further ado, let’s meet Maggie Reyes.
Susan: Welcome to the show, Maggie.
Maggie: Susan Hyatt, I am so excited to be here today. Thank you for having me.
Susan: So, Maggie, how long have we known each other? It’s been forever.
Maggie: Forever and ever.
Susan: I’m trying to think of, like, my Facebook life from the beginning. And I’m pretty sure we’ve been friends since they let old people on the Facebook.
Maggie: Do you know, you were one of the first coaches I ever friended on Facebook. And I was new to Facebook. And I very clearly remember thinking, “Oh this is how Susan does it. She just shares about her life. This must be how you’re supposed to do things here.” So definitely, maybe, for me, I joined Facebook in 2010, and maybe 2011 was – so it’s been a while.
Susan: And now look at you. You have a book out called Questions for Couples Journal that is fabulous.
Maggie: Thank you, I’m so excited. I remember when you were in your journey to publish BARE and I remember having this vision that we would be on the book charts together. And it took me a little longer, Susan, but I’m there with you now.
Susan: Listen, I sure hope you surpass me on the charts because I feel like everybody who is in a relationship, whether it’s a partnership or a committed relationship, or a marriage, everybody really, really, really needs this book, including me and the silver fox. I have been threatening to have him back on the podcast. And I have a whole script here. And he has been fired from being on my podcast temporarily because I clearly need to do some more work with him from this book so I don’t want to kill him as a podcast guest.
Because he does things like shown up with a noisy environment in the background or thinks that people can see him and wants to show spreadsheets during a podcast interview. And I’m just like, “Okay, I don’t have time for this.” So, Maggie, having you as a guest is really like a two for one because, for coaches listening to Rich Coach Club, I know many, many, many, many coaches in this audience dream of becoming a published author.
So, obviously you’re a perfect choice to talk about your journey with that. But also, talking about your niche and how committed you have been to picking this niche and what that means for you in business. So, let’s dive in.
Maggie: Yeah, I think there are some times in coaching circles, a fiction that if you’re not a business coach, you don’t make money. And I’m very proud to be an ambassador for the opposite of that. People need our help in every area and people are hurting and they need us to figure ourselves out so we can help them, right? It’s so important.
So, I help smart women have better marriages. I’ve been doing that since I didn’t know what I was doing, since back in the day when we first met. I was always about learning, about relationships, and learning what worked and using my own relationship as a lab to see what it is we do that makes us so happy, and then sharing everything that I learned along the way. So, I love that.
Susan: A beautiful way to talk about it, your lab. And so, when you started out as a coach and were fascinated with relationships, what did you notice? Because you have had a remarkably happy relationship, but you’ve done a lot of work.
Maggie: Yeah, so when we were dating, we got married in our 30s and we were like, “I really like you and I don’t want to mess this up.” This was our predominant thought about our relationship. And we took, like, a hodgepodge of workshops and we would go to daylong events and we did all of these things that helped us really think more clearly about what we wanted our relationship to be.
And a couple of things that happened is, when I met my husband, I had this incredible sense of rightness when – sometimes it happens for someone when they meet their partner. Sometimes it happens for someone when they have a child or when they’re doing the work of their lives. And you just feel like you are absolutely in the right place at the right time doing the right thing. You just feel this massive sense of rightness.
And the first thing my husband taught me was, I was able to recognize everywhere in my life that I didn’t feel that way. And that’s what’s actually sparked my journey to eventually become a life coach because I was like, “Oh, what do I want to be when I grow up? Who do I want to be?”
And that journey, I took aptitude tests, I took all the things, the StrengthsFinder, all of those different kinds of things. And it took me a while. And I also want to share with the coaches who listen to you, if you haven’t totally figured out what you’re about yet, just keep walking while you’re figuring that out. Just keep doing the next right thing that’s in front of you.
I think that, sometimes, we see this massive success that people have and we forget – I remember when you used to give out a blender for your freebie. Do you remember?
Susan: Oh my god, yes, a Vitamix.
Maggie: The Vitamix, yeah. So, it’s like, people look at you now – I was there when it wasn’t now, when it was then, and they don’t realize, it’s like we’re all experimenting, we’re all trying new things. We’re all on this path experimenting. So, I definitely want to share that.
And then, in marriage specifically, here’s what I noticed. When I was getting married, there’s this beautiful thing called the Wedding Industrial Complex, which is a multi-billion-dollar business where people spend so many thousands of dollars. The average wedding is around 40K…
Susan: Oh, I can’t…
Maggie: Yes, the average honeymoon – this is in the US. So, if you’re listening outside the US, this is what I found when I was researching this. The average honeymoon is about $4000. The average divorce, if there’s no assets involved, is like $60,000. And we spend at the beginning, at the end, and we spend nothing investing in the middle of the relationship. What is wrong with our world.
Susan: So sobering.
Maggie: Yes, so I found that there were all these 57 ways to fold a napkin, all those things, and then there was nothing about, “Well what if we just don’t want to mess it up? What if we don’t know what we’re doing? We need to know what to do.” Right, back in the day.
And that was really my initial inspiration to start writing and sharing about marriage, and then it’s gone deeper and deeper and deeper every year. And one of the things that I’m super super-proud of is years later, I was actually invited to write for brides.com and for marthastewartweddings.com and Martha Stewart Weddings happened in one of your programs, which is so exciting.
Susan: Yes, I remember, I remember.
Maggie: And that was such a full circle moment for me because it was like, those publications, which I loved when I was getting married, there’s nothing wrong with them. It’s just we also need to talk about how to have a healthy thriving relationship and make that equally as important and elevated as the flowers we’re going to use on the table.
Susan: It is so, so true. And just how you frame that, we spend all this money to kick it off and we spend all this money cleaning up the end, and there’s really no money spent in the middle. And I think, if you think about that actually, when you think about relationships with clients. Like, it’s got to be a consistent, sustainable effort, or it’s not going to work and you are going to mess it up.
Maggie: Yeah, and if we don’t learn – like, no one is teaching us the most important skills we need in our life. I always used to think, when I became an adult, it’s like, when I was in high school, why did they teach me algebraic equations? Why don’t I know how to balance a checkbook or what is compound interest, right?
And so, these simple, simple things, a lot of times, when I’m helping my clients do things – and I know you have this experience too – sometimes the simplest little tweak has this massive effect on a relationship.
Susan: Let me ask you this. To your darling hubby, what has been the smallest thing that’s made the biggest thing for you two?
Maggie: So, at the very beginning of our relationship, we went to a workshop where someone – I wish I would have written his name down because I want to quote him. But they guy who was doing the workshop said, “The reason relationships get stale is because we stop creating them every day.”
And the point was this, like, we think the relationship gets stale, but it’s really the way we are approaching it. And we left that workshop and started discussing that, like, “Oh my gosh, if we keep it fresh every day and we remember that we’re creating it every day then it will never get stale.”
And then, we talked about, what does that look like for us? So, now we’re recording this in a moment of quarantine where he’s working from home, I’m working from home, so everybody is home. But in life before quarantine, he would text me when he went to lunch and I would text him when I was at lunch.
We had these little sort of touch points. We’d do the daily check in every day. So, our daily check in is like, “How was our day? What went on? What are we worried about? What are we excited about?” Those kinds of things. Those tiny tweaks, literally, a text and a simple conversation, we have done since day one and we are the type of people where we travel, we’ll be in a hotel and people will think we’re on our honeymoon.
And we laugh and it’s such a compliment. It’s like, no, it’s 13 years. We’re not on our honeymoon. But it’s because of those simple things that we do consistently all the time. And when we veer off, it’s almost like eating healthy or, you know, exercise, or any other thing that you want to do in your life. There’s moments where you veer off. There’s moments, when I was writing the book, we had to make some decisions about how much time we spend together and we didn’t put up our normal Christmas tree. We bought a table tree.
But the idea is you always come back to, “This is who we are and this is what we do here.” And we’re always connecting. And that’s really important. I call it, now that I teach it – first I did it, now I teach it – I call it always be friending. You know on Facebook, someone friends you. So, the more you like and comment on their stuff, the more you see all their stuff. So, I say, in real life, always be friending your partner. Like, are you liking and commenting on their stuff? What’s happening?
Susan: I love that, first of all, I want to back up and say, if you’re not willing to have a tabletop Christmas tree as a sacrifice for bigger goals, like, don’t bother. And number two, I love this liking and friending thing because I do think – I have been married, I can’t even believe it, 27 years, and we’ve been together 29 years.
And there have been periods, where you describe, like, it’s not that the relationship is stale. It’s that your energy and approach to the relationship is stale. And that is so true. That is so true because, I can tell you – this is kind of hilarious but I know you’ll dig it.
So, back when the 50 Shades of Grey books came out, which by the way, today I can see it as problematic for a number of different reasons. But I didn’t know that then. And I actually loved the books for the erotic – I honestly, I am telling the truth, did not realize erotica was an actual literary genre until 50 Shades.
So, it was like this doorway into erotica. So, when I started reading books like that, all of a sudden, Maggie, I was putting all kinds of friending energy into my marriage. And I remember Scott was like, “What in the hell is happening? What are you reading?” He was like, “This is porn.” And he was making fun of me.
And it wasn’t that there was any kind of problem with our sex life. It was that I wasn’t taking the time to put energy towards – and neither was he at the time – energy towards friending each other up. And so, it’s like, the only difference was what I was reading.
Maggie: Yes, oh my gosh. So, I read fan fiction, which that was fan fiction of another book. And it was so funny, back in that time, because fan fiction authors were like, “Oh, there’s so much better fan fiction than this.” And then I read romance novels. And here’s the story in my house is my husband – when I’m reading a romance novel, he’s like, “That’s always good news for me. Keep reading.”
Susan: Right, great news. And now that we’re talking about it, I’m like, “You know what? I need to download me a new book.” Maggie, you’ll have to tell me what your favorites are.
Maggie: I’ll have to get back to you. I have to think about that.
Susan: You’ll have to think about it. But it’s such a tangible example. And I can tell you, as a coach, like – what year did those come out, was it like ’09?
Maggie: I don’t remember, but yeah, it was a while.
Susan: You guys, it was a long time ago. And a lot of the coaching sessions that I was having with women was around sex and that book. And so, when you think about all the time and energy that we put into planning a destination wedding or a beautiful wedding or all these things and not the same kind of energy and focus later, which I have totally been there. SO, if you’re listening to this and you want to create a better partnership, it’s really something to think about. And not that it’s one person’s responsibility, but I do think it’s true that if one partner steps up in a different way, it shifts the energy for the relationship.
Maggie: Absolutely, so, that is literally what I teach all of my clients and my community is how to take emotional leadership of your relationship. And it’s something that people ask me all the time, “But why should I, Maggie?” That’s the question I get all the time. And here’s my answer. And I have a couple of them.
One is, because you are the one who’s dissatisfied with how it’s going. The dude is happy. The dude is like, “I love this woman. It’s a miracle she said yes to me. I’m good.” But if you’re dissatisfied, then taking ownership is only of the highest value to you because a powerful woman – I deal with a lot of powerful women, successful in business, scientists, doctors, all these kids of different professions, engineers, super-powerful people. And then they come home and they give all their power over to their husband’s mood.
And I’m like, “No, no, no, we don’t do that here. We decide what kind of relationship we want to have. We show up for that relationship.” And it’s actually based systems theory and psychology. There’s actually science behind the wackiness. Where what happens is your partner starts reacting to how you are showing up, which is exactly what you described with Scott. It’s like, he started reacting to the way you were showing up.
And it becomes a very natural thing that occurs. It’s not from a place of manipulation or from a place of expecting a response. It’s just showing up as who you want to be in the world.
Susan: I think that that’s such a great point because I talk a lot on this podcast about the invisible workload of women. And I can hear y’all right now being like, “Oh great, let me add transforming my marriage to the list.” And it’s not about you having to do everything. It’s more like, if I want to remain in a relationship, how good do I want it to be and what can I do to be a leader in this situation?
Maggie: And here’s what I think in this conversation, because I have it a lot too, is there is nuance. There is, like, we’ll have a beautiful chat today and it will be fun and we’ll think differently about your relationship. But there’s nuance when you go to apply this. And here’s how I like to describe it.
Every marriage has a dance. And imagine dancing, swaying and flowing and moving around between acceptance and standards and boundaries. And it’s a dance. So, first, we need to know, what’s acceptable to me? What do I want? What is okay? What is not okay? Like, the simplest definition of a boundary; what is okay and what is not okay?
Then, am I willing to accept my partner exactly as they are right now and love them and see, do I really want to create the next chapter of my life with this person knowing who they are and accepting them completely? And that requires a level of nuance where sometimes you accept them completely and some of those behaviors dissipate because you’re no longer rejecting them all the time.
Susan: Give me an example.
Maggie: Okay, so, I’m going to give you an example with a caveat because this is an actual thing that happened with a client, but it’s not like I’m promising that this will happen with every person. Okay, people, use your brains, okay?
I had a client whose husband was a liar. That person who would lie when the truth would suffice. We all have a friend like that. They embellish a little. And this was very, very problematic for her and she really did not like this about him. But she didn’t want to get divorced over it.
It wasn’t like he was lying over terrible things that were harming the relationship. He would just, like, lie about all kinds of stuff. So, she came to me and told me this and I said, “Well, hey, so, sometimes your husband lies. Can you be married to a liar?” And then she said, “Oh, he’s the love of my life. I mean, of course, I’m going to find a way.”
It was a very fascinating thing. And what happened was the moment that she was able to find acceptance in her heart for him just being who he is, he started lying less. Now…
Susan: That’s so interesting. So, previously, was she calling him out on his lies?
Maggie: Oh yes, it was a problem. A big problem.
Susan: Wait, so was he lying about things that mattered or things that, like, he filled her car up with gas? I don’t know, what’s he lying about?
Maggie: So, let’s put it this way. He was lying about things that were important to her that may not be important to you or to me. But to her, they were valuable and important things she cared about, right? And she is a person who values integrity over all. And for her, laying is the antithesis about who she wanted to be in the world. So, this is values conflict that they had.
But when she came to me and was like, “I need to fix his lying and then I’ll feel better,” as opposed to, “You just need to decide, can you be married to a liar or not?” How far does this go? Where is your decision-making paradigm with him?
And I’m not saying this is the right choice for everyone. Like, I want to be clear, nuance is one of my favorite words. So, I’m giving this example and I want to be super-explicit that, in some cases, you need to drop the man like a hot potato, okay.
Susan: Like, I’m going to drop you and you a could potato because you – no, this is all about the client’s goal. And her goal was to stay married.
Maggie: Yes, that’s really important, right? And I’ll also say – and I’m sure this has happened to you, Susan – that coaching varies based on the person. And here’s something I say all the time, I repeat it all the time, if you take one thing away from this interview, take this; where is your growth? Sometimes your growth is to stay and make it work.
For that client, it was to stay and make it work. Sometimes, your growth is to say, “I’ve done everything I can. My conscience is clear. I’ve cleaned up my side of the table and now I want something else.” And both of those are equally as valid outcomes and both of them will change over time and they’ll be different for different people.
So, when you’re thinking, “Oh my god…” maybe somebody listening to this is married to a liar and they’re like, “Well my growth is to say I am done.” More power to you if that is where your growth is. What do you think, Susan?
Susan: I mean, certainly I’ve had friends that were in challenging situations and marriages and clients and family members. And one thing that I have learned is that the most helpful thing that we can do is be really unattached to what decisions they make and coach them on them arriving, like you’re saying, at what helps them feel most powerful, most aligned, most whatever.
Because I bet everybody listening has been in for coffee or drinks with that girlfriend that is going on and on and on about their relationship and you chime in and say, “What a dirtbag…” and then they have a complete reconciliation and then you’re no longer a friend because you feel like you called the guy a dirtbag. It’s not our job to call the guy a dirtbag unless someone is being harmed and they need to flee.
But by and large, I like the caveat, like, what’s the biggest area of growth. And also, everyone gets to decide when they’re down with the growth lesson. It’s interesting because I’ve actually had more – I can emphatically say I have facilitated saving more relationships than I have had people leave relationships. But I think all of them could say they arrive there from a place of complete alignment with their own integrity, and not my opinion or your opinion of what integrity is in a relationship.
Maggie: Exactly. That, to me, is the key. And people come to me, obviously, they’re struggling in their relationship. That’s why you come to a marriage coach. And here’s one of the things I say all the time is, we don’t know what’s going to happen. We’re going to see, if we can save it, let’s save it. we’re going to see, right?
If you come to the conclusion, after you’ve cleaned your side of the table up and done whatever forgiveness work needs to be done, whatever acceptance work – sometimes it’s boundaries. The thing I talk about all the time is, how are you showing up for yourself? Like, you want this person to show up in a particular way, but are you showing up in that way for yourself?
Sometimes, it’s a very internal personal process. At the end of that, you might say, “I love this person more than I ever loved them before.” Or, at the end of that, if you do decide that your highest and best outcome is not to be together anymore, it’s very different to make that decision from a place of anger and resentment versus from a place of love and power.
Susan: Yes, and it’s also like – I mean, we could get into a whole separate discussion about – I mean, there are so many listeners who don’t ever want to be in a marriage but are in a committed partnership, and other listeners who are in polyamorous relationships. So, these tips can be applied to any kind of relationship that you’re having, even a friendship.
Maggie: Absolutely, everything I teach in the context of marriage makes every relationship in your life better and stronger because of how you’re showing up for that relationship. And I’ll tell you this, one of my clients was exploring polyamory and I did a lot of research at the time to support her and to be able to hold space for her.
And my personal opinion is that polyamory is like getting a PhD in all relationship topics. Like, if you want to know your boundaries and know your values and be able to communicate the best ever, polyamory will bring that out because you have to be so clear and so explicit and have such a clear vision and view about how you want things to go. Me personally, I’m like, “Listen, I can only be with one person. I cannot handle it. That’s too much for me.”
Susan: Yeah, me too. And I’ve joked on this podcast before – and listen, I don’t have a clear understanding, so I’m probably going to say something that might offend any of you who are polyamorous and I’m sorry in advance. But I do like to say, I don’t share my French fries, my coffee, or penis. It’s not going to happen. I’m not a candidate for that. But if you are, I believe you, Maggie, that it is like next level understanding and clarity of boundaries of what you want out of a relationship and being willing to ask that, and also being able to do deep internal work.
And listen, I think we’re going to see more and more and more of that. Like, when I look at my kiddos’ generation and I look at the difference between Ryan and Cora, Cora is very much, like, why would I get married? Whereas Ryan is much more traditional in his thinking. But no matter what relationship they enter, I’m going to give them this book…
Susan: Because seriously, because it’s like, you flip to any page – and like this one, I just flipped open and a question my eyeballs landed on is, “What makes an apology meaningful to you?” I think that’s a really important thing to be able to say because, honestly, especially what we’re seeing online right now in the midst of the civil rights movement for Black Lives Matter and there are a lot of people – we’re not taught how to apologize.
And so, instead what you get is like, “I’m sorry if what I did made you feel like…” and it’s like, no, you can’t say that… But I didn’t know that, right, years ago. And so, it’s like, asking the question, how do you apologize, what makes an apology meaningful to you, that’s a huge – a couple could spend how many therapy sessions on that one question.
Maggie: Yeah, here’s a couple of things sort of behind the scenes about the book. One of my favorite things about the book is, like, this is a mainstream book with a major publisher. I’m going to bake in life coaching concepts into this. Oh yes, that’s happening, right?
And one of the things in the introduction of the book, I talk about having open-hearted curiosity and really putting aside judgment or criticism and really framing, when you’re asking and answering the questions, to think about just being a detective and just getting clues about what your partner is interested in and what they like and that kind of stuff.
And to me, if people take one thing away from this book, was it’s just how to practice open-hearted curiosity without judging the answers. That alone will have a massive effect on the rest of the relationship forever, no matter what questions they ask or answer.
Susan: I’m totally going to commit to asking the silver fox one of these questions each night at dinner. It’s going to be our dinner time activity. And he will dig it. He loves stuff like this. He absolutely, like, anything to get me to put my phone down and pay attention to him.
As a matter of fact, I will invite you all to go look at the racecar photo that I put up. You might have to scroll back in my photos by the time this episode comes out in a couple weeks. I made his day, Maggie, by asking my photographer to take some pictures of him with his car and I’m like his arm candy. And it’s sort of like, “Finally the spotlight is on me.”
Maggie: That is so good.
Susan: It’s so good. Like, the look on his face is, like, such validation. Like, “I’m a stud right now.” But it’s really taking the time to think about, how can I honor and celebrate this man? And I don’t think many people, unfortunately in any kind of relationship, are really thinking about friending their partner and I certainly need to do a better job at it myself. So, Maggie, where can my listeners – like, you’re already a member of Rich Coach Club…
Maggie: Yes, I’m there. Hey, everyone.
Susan: And then where else can people find you if they want to hang out with you?
Maggie: So, my website is maggiereyes.com and the book specifically, you can go to maggiereyes.com/book and you can see all about it there. One thing I want to let people know about the book, I want to give a couple of tips on how to use the book because there are partners who will take a look at the cover and be like, “No way, what are you doing?”
So, one of my clients has the book. She opens it up, she picks a question, and then at dinner, she’ll say, “Oh, by the way, I’ve never asked you about such and such.” And that’s how she uses it, on the downlow.
What I do with my husband is – because when I was writing the book, I had 400 questions to write. So, we didn’t answer any of these when I was writing it. So, I’ll give the book to my husband and he’ll pick a question and I’ll pick a question. And that way, he’s very comfortable with what we’re going to be asking because he’s picking some of the questions. So, I just want to let you all know, you can use the book in different ways and whatever way works for you is a good way.
Susan: That’s such a great tip. I need to let him pick a question. Okay, great tip. Helping me already.
Maggie: Thank you.
Susan: Maggie, you are such a delight, I want to thank you so much for being here and I can’t wait to hear – I’m going to start some conversations inside Rich Coach Club. Instructions will be in the show notes about using questions from this book. And I’m going to give away a book. So, look in the show notes for how you can win a copy of Questions for Couples Journal by Maggie Reyes.
Maggie: Thank you, Susan, thank you for having me. It’s such an honor. Thank you for always believing in me when there was no book in sight. You said, “I’m going to help this girl,” and you’ve helped me so much throughout my entire coaching career and I’m so grateful.
Susan: It has been my honor.
Oh hey, one more quick thing. A moment ago, you met the lovely Maggie. Just a heads up, Maggie hosts a podcast of her own. It’s called the Marriage Life Coach Podcast and you should definitely check it out. She’s got an episode called How to Argue Better and an episode called Sex in Stressful Times. I think we all need to listen to that episode, especially right now, am I right?
So, go check out Maggie’s podcast. Show the love. Support this beautiful woman in our coaching community and you will definitely learn a few things in the process. Again, it’s the Marriage Life Coach Podcast. Listen and enjoy.
Thanks for listening to today’s episode. I hope this episode has inspired you to dial up your self-care because, when you feel healthy and energized, it’s a good thing for your marriage and your business, and stop waiting for your spouse or anybody else to make your dreams come true. Take initiative, do it yourself. Invite yourself. Create it yourself.
Ultimately, you are the architect of your dream life. And while other people may be involved, your happiness and success starts with you. Have a beautiful week and I’ll see you next Monday.
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