Creating incredible trust and security in your relationship was a big topic on our Kickass Couple’s podcast interview with Lori and Chris Cambas. (Chris is the co-author of Matthew’s new book, “Kickass Husband: Winning at Life, Marriage, and Sex”.)
Chris has over 20 years of marriage therapy experience and is Gottman certified. He’s the real deal when it comes to understanding and knowing relationships. Lori has been right there with him doing this. They have national marriage seminars and have both been invested in helping other therapists learn the Gottman theory and put it into practice.
Lori is not a therapist, but has sat through over 250 training’s on relationships at different levels of Gottman training. She understands how it works, but they’re a normal couple. They have the same issues that we all deal with and struggle to overcome.
Chris and Lori have been together for 25 years. When we asked Chris why he felt they were kick-ass, he said it’s because they want to be. They are completely emotionally invested in their relationship and it is their journey for life. There are no open doors for anything else.
This philosophy has given them incredible security and trust in their relationship. Commitment is one of our 13 pillars at Kickass Couples Nation. And it’s also the first and most important of what we call the three C’S.
The three C’s that we think are instrumental as the foundation for any successful relationship are: commitment, communication and conflict resolution. As a therapist, Chris said that if there’s commitment to the relationship, then therapy won’t do a couple any good. They’d be dumping their money down the drain. Therapy cannot work if they’re not each equally committed to the relationship. We thought that was really powerful advice!
Chris jumped into sharing a great story on that topic during the interview, from his own relationship with Lori. He revealed that he had heart issues when he was very young and had to get open-heart surgery. This came at a time in their relationship when they were just dating. They weren’t even married yet. Lori, at the time, was the general manager of a hotel. She took a month off when he had his open-heart surgery to help him. She risked her career to be there for him. That’s commitment.
She was so committed to him and their relationship, that she put him first. You’ve heard us talk about prioritization a lot and that was a beautiful example of her showing prioritization in their relationship.
Chris said to think of commitment as vast as the size of the universe. That’s how big and important it is. Billions and trillions of stars don’t even compare to the commitment that you have to have for your spouse.
The idea of conditional commitment came up in our interview as well. When there’s failure in a relationship, it’s because there’s conditional commitment. Meaning, there’s an open door, there’s other potential relationships, or there’s not complete emotional bonding and commitment to that relationship. Chris said that’s how affairs occur. Affairs happen when someone is not completely, totally committed to a relationship. In an affair, when a person is speaking to another person, and that other person knows more about you and your spouse then your spouse knows about that person, that’s an affair. If you’ve got a friendship, and that person knows more about you and your spouse, then your spouse knows about that person – that’s the definition of an affair.
The Cambas’ are committed to protecting their relationship. They’re always in the process of learning. They summed the interview up by saying, don’t expect it to be easy. And if they had to give their young, unmarried selves some advice, they’d say to themselves, don’t expect this to be easy. You’re going to have to work hard. It’s going to have to be a commitment that you make and you’re going to have to work day in and day out, but it’s going to be worth it. It’s an investment and you will see that investment grow.
Until next time. Remember, happily ever after doesn’t just happen. It’s on purpose.