Relationships while Quarantined | Esther Perel on The Tim Ferriss Show

Check out The Tim Ferriss Episode Page & Show Notes

Key Takeaways

  • Stressful situations, such as this pandemic, can cause tensions to rise and  exacerbate existing differences in relationships
    • One partner’s coping mechanism can be seen as a threat by the other partner (E.g.: One partner may cope by reading news updates on the coronavirus while the other partner doesn’t want to hear a single word about it)
  • Disasters accelerate everything:
    • “In the aftermath of a disaster, there will be more babies, more marriages, and more divorces. It’s either life is short, what are we waiting for, let’s make a baby. It’s either life is short, I’ve waited long enough, let’s leave. ” –Esther Perel
      • Your priorities get reorganized and you rethink WHAT and WHO is important to you
  • “The divorce is the end of the marriage but it’s not the end of the family. It’s the reorganization of the family.” –Esther Perel
  • Use meals as an opportunity to connect and get to know your partner
    • It’s okay to laugh during hard times, it provides moments of much-needed relief 
      • Talk to your partner about mortality and share your fears 
  • Just because you live alone, that doesn’t mean you have to be lonely–talk to your friends and family members
    • Have dinner with friends while video chatting
    • If you’re feeling lonely, go volunteer: help deliver food, buy groceries for the elderly, bring medicine to people, walk someone’s dog

Intro

Books Mentioned

How Disasters Affect Relationships

  • Stressful situations, such as this pandemic, can cause tensions to rise and  exacerbate existing differences in relationships
    • One partner’s coping mechanism can be seen as a threat by the other partner (Ex: One partner may cope by reading news updates on the coronavirus while the other partner doesn’t want to hear a single word about it)
  • There are 4 stages of disaster: warning, planning, actual event, aftermath
  • Disaster accelerates everything:
    • “In the aftermath of disaster, there will be more babies, more marriages, and more divorces. It’s either life is short, what are we waiting for, let’s make a baby. It’s either life is short, I’ve waited long enough, let’s leave. ” –Esther Perel
      • Your priorities get reorganized and you rethink WHAT and WHO is important to you
        • Perhaps you’ll take up art or another passion you’ve been holding off on, or call up someone you’ve been missing
  • The coronavirus has shown us that “We’re all vulnerable to being randomly exterminated at anytime” –Esther Perel
  • Historical stories about triumph and how people overcome adversity can help people get through difficult times

Stay Connected With Family & Friends

  • The words your parents used to describe you as a child can have a big impact on how you view yourself
    • The stories you tell yourself aren’t etched in stone, but live on for a long time unless you put in the effort to reformat your story
  • Going to see your parents when you’re an adult are often processes of regression–you’ll feel like an adult until you enter your parent’s house
  • It’s important to stay in-touch with loved ones and communicate with them even if you can’t be around them
    • “There is nothing that’s going to help us more in this moment than social cohesion and mutual support” –Esther Perel
      • “There are really incredible opportunities for deepening at this moment…people are spending more time together”
  • “The divorce is the end of the marriage but it’s not the end of the family. It’s the reorganization of the family.” –Esther Perel
    • Work with your partner to create a plan to make sure your kids will be safe
  • Just because you live alone, that doesn’t mean you have to be lonely–talk to your friends and family members
    • Have dinner with friends while video chatting
    • If you’re feeling lonely, go volunteer: help deliver food, buy groceries for the eldery, bring medicine to people, walk someone’s dog
      • “If you don’t feel that your life is important enough for you, sometimes it helps to know that at least it makes a difference for others” –Esther Perel

Advice For Surviving With Your Partner

  • Use meals as an opportunity to connect and get to know your partner
    • It’s okay to laugh during hard times, it provides moments of much-needed relief 
      • Talk to your partner about mortality and share your fears 
  • Pursuing something creative helps us survive in tough times: paint, play music, sing songs
  • Dance together! You can cry from reading or listening to music, but you can’t dance and cry at the same time
    • “You can’t dance and cry, the body won’t let you” –Esther Perel
  • Be aware of your emotions, cases of domestic violence rise in situations of confinement
  • If you aren’t physically with your partner:
    • FaceTime them and ask them deep questions: what have you noticed that you don’t really pay attention to anymore or what have you been thinking about today
      • Don’t ask people how things are, ask them, how are you? (How are you sleeping, how are you eating, etc.)

Tim’s New Routine

  • Tim has been in quarantine for 4 weeks now, he enjoys having a routine, especially during these difficult times
    • He puts his phone on airplane mode at 8pm and opens it only after eating breakfast
    • He follows the workouts he’s learned from Jerzy Gregorek and his The Happy Body exercises
    • He tries to take a cold plunge or shower during the day
    • He’s a fan of Peloton because it provides exercise and is a social activity even if it’s people on a screen 
  • Tim and his girlfriend cook dinner every night and say one thing they’re grateful for before eating, also no devices at the table
    • After dinner, the two of them take the dog out for a walk
      • After the walk, Tim and his girlfriend usually watch stream a series but they watch a different series during the weekends so that there’s some feeling of a break so it doesn’t feel like groundhog day
        • Towards the end of the night, Tim hops into his barrel sauna and then does some foam rolling

Esther’s Routine

  • Esther is still working as a therapist during the quarantine, the only difference is that all of her sessions are online now
  • Esther started a weekly movie club with her friends–everyone watches the same movie on their own time and then they all come together to discuss it
  • She also enjoys taking a walk with her husband
    • She also tries to meditate and do yoga

Tim Ferriss Show :
Notes By Alex Wiec

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