A Quick Reference guide to help you move from relationship conflict to relationship renewal

(An excerpt from Cultivating Love: Enhancing Communication by Dr Ken McGill)


R: Remove yourselves from each other. Call a Time Out!

Calling a time out for 20 minutes, 2 hours or up to 24 hours is crucial to allow you both to cool off and cease incendiary behaviors, which only serve to interrupt your ability to think clearly and rationally. Review the remainder of this card for success.

E: Explore how this happened and what needs repairing

Explore “your side of the street” regarding how and why this happened. Being critical, controlling, fearful or selfish could be the culprit, but never the solution. Your message deserves to be listened to but you’ll have to contain yourself to be heard.

S: Spirituality: Breathe and pray for insight and compassion

Implementing any form of self-care strategy like breathing and praying will help to settle your spirit and help you to hit the “reset” button. Pray for God to give you insight to the problem, the solution and to help you to compassionately share this with your partner.

E: Examine and share the most important point to you

What is the most important point that you wish to convey to your Spouse/Partner/Friend? If necessary, write this down and plan on sharing what you think, what you feel and what you think could solve your impasse in 4 minutes or less. Be prepared to listen to your partner’s most important point as well.

T: Time to listen, appreciate and change what you can

After you have both had time to share and listen to each other’s most important point (not multiple points), try to change whatever it is that you can change immediately to facilitate resolution. Make sure you appreciate what you are given in this process.


R: Remember, your Spouse is not your Enemy!

We forget this point and treat our Spouse/Partner/Friend like an object to be controlled. Try giving yourself permission to only demonstrate the 9 Fruit of the Spirit (patience, kindness, gentleness, etc.) and descriptors of Agape (love, honor, respect, esteem, cherish, favor, devotion, etc.).

E: Explore and share the lesson God wants you to receive

What is the deeper lesson in this for you? Do you need to demonstrate more kindness, understanding, self-control or compassion? More support, less arrogance, more honesty, less resentment, more safety and humility versus pride or impulsivity?

N: “Kneel” and pray for (and) with your Spouse; Bless versus curse

It is incompatible to be stressed out when you are relaxed and in the same way it is incompatible to curse or hate when you are praying for blessings for your Spouse. Do this consistently and continuously and seek ways to immediately be a blessing to your partner.

E: “Implement” immediate behavior that creates peace

Practicing any of the “Empowering E’s” on a daily basis will yield fruitful results when it comes to renewing relationship. Some of them are: Encouragement, Empathy, Effort, Emotional restitution, Equality, Esteem, Explanation and Endurance.

W: Work to create safe and empowering memories

Use your mind energy to create safe, enjoyable and strategic experiences that reflect your purpose, vision and your spiritual identity. Creating positive memories infers deliberate actions that not only facilitate relationship repair and healing, but also love and joy.

TeleHealth/Video counseling sessions are available for those who prefer to meet online – Dr. McGill

Businesswoman presses button psychological counseling online on virtual screens. technology, internet and networking concept.

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About Dr Ken McGill

Dr. Ken McGill is an ordained minister and has been involved in counseling for more than 25 years. Dr. McGill holds a Bachelor's degree in Religion from Pacific Christian College (now Hope International University), a Certificate of Completion in the Alcohol and Drug Studies/Counseling Program from the University of California at Los Angeles and a Masters degree in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University. Dr. McGill received his Doctorate in Clinical Psychology with an emphasis in Family Psychology from Azusa Pacific University in May, 2003. Dr. McGill's dissertation focused on the development of an integrated treatment program for the sexually addicted homeless population, and Ken was "personally mentored" by dissertation committee member Dr. Patrick Carnes, a pioneer in the field of sex addiction work. Dr. McGill authored a chapter in the text The Clinical Management of Sex Addiction, with his chapter addressing the homeless and sex addiction. Dr. McGill is also a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in the States of Texas and California and Mississippi, and is a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist, through the International Institute for Trauma and Addictive Professionals (IITAP). Dr. McGill had a private practice in Glendora, CA (Aspen Counseling Center), Inglewood, CA (Faithful Central Bible Church), and Hattiesburg, MS (River of Life Church), specializing in the following areas with individuals, couples, families, groups and psychoeducational training: addictions and recovery, pre-marital, marital and family counseling, issues related to traumatization and abuse, as well as depression, grief, loss, anger management and men's and women's issues. Dr. McGill also provided psychotherapeutic treatment with Student-Athletes on the University of Southern Mississippi Football and Men's Basketball teams. Dr. McGill served as the Director of the Gentle Path Program, which is a seven-week residential program, for people who are challenged with sexual addiction, sexual anorexia, and relationship issues. Dr. McGill also supervised Doctoral students in the Southern Mississippi Psychology Internship Consortium with the University of Southern Mississippi. Dr. McGill was inducted into the Azusa Pacific University Academic Hall of Honor, School of Behavioral and Applied Sciences, in October, 2010. Dr. McGill currently works as a Private practice clinician with an office in Plano, Texas, providing treatment with people who are challenged in the areas mentioned above.


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