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One of the Best Recipes for Healthy Committed Relationships

Psychology is a relatively young science. As a field of study, I believe psychology made a significant mistake by focusing at first on psychopathology. My major interest as a psychologist has always been related to what leads to mental health as opposed to what causes mental illness. Therefore, I was an advocate of Positive Psychology long before it had a name! Today’s recipe has been found to be one of the essential ingredients for lasting healthy committed relationships. Today's recipe is a classic with a long rich history. Read on to learn a recipe that people in the 1600's discovered and today psychologists are praising it's mental health benefits...


Humble pie had it's roots in the early 17th century. The origin of the word “humble,” which means ‘one of lowly rank' or 'having a low self esteem' came from the word ‘umbles.’ Umbles stems from Latin and Old French words for loins. (i.e., 'the parts of the body that should covered with clothing’).” Umble pie was a meal made from the discarded parts of animals (the heart, liver, entrails etc. of animals, especially of deer) by people of lower socioeconomic station in the 1600’s. It seems a bit ironic that as early as the 1600’s somehow the connection between being humble and apologizing began.

Humble Pie

Preparation Time: Varies

Ingredients: 1 or more mistake, hurtful words or deeds, forgotten promises or an argument

1 Time Out

1 - 5 cups of personal responsibility

3 cups of Thoughtful remorse

1 genuine heart felt apology to your partner

1 intention not to repeat the behavior in the future

Directions: After an argument or disagreement, or as soon as you learn that you have hurt your partner, take a time out to refrigerate all the ingredients. Once they have all cooled down, mix the thoughts about your actions in a large bowl Stir the thoughts frequently. While stirring, be sure to focus on what you have done which was hurtful or inappropriate in your interaction with your partner. Then add in 1 - 5 cups of personal responsibility. Finally, blend in the thoughtful remorse and chill until the mixture turns into a genuine apology.

Serving suggestions:

Schedule time to share your Humble Pie with your partner

Optional Alternative serving suggestions - write an apology note and send it of post it where your partner will find it.

Optional additional ingredient: Add a reconciliatory gift (flowers is traditional, but you can be creative and offer another gift)

Unfortunately, many people still find it hard to apologize and accept responsibility for their mistakes. It is actually a trait which should be associated with higher levels of self esteem, especially since it is a top ranking ingredient for lasting healthy relationships. If you are lucky you grew up in a family where you were taught to apologize for and make up for your mistakes. If not you will need to practice this recipe as often as possible until it becomes more natural. Disagreements and mistakes are part of living with our loved ones. We are all human and make mistakes. When we are stressed, tired, or distracted, we may lose our temper and say or do things that hurt the people closest to us. Genuine apologies, followed by intentional attempts to prevent the behaviors from occurring again can go a long way in helping to stay in a loving committed relationship. Humble Pie can help couples avoid the dangerous feelings of contempt which can poison and destroy relationships, if angry feelings fail to get processed and resolved.

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