Google Your Heart to Find Love

“You used to ask a smart person a question. Now, who do you ask?” says Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak. “It starts with g-o, and it’s not God.” Of course, Wozniak is referring to the all-knowing Google.

Wozniak, who is also well-known for a recent stint on Dancing with the Stars, knows a thing or two about technology (but not so much about dancing). He tells CNN “we’ve lost a lot of control” in our lives because of the prevalence of technology and our inability to turn it off.

Well, if Google is so smart, perhaps it can tell us what people are thinking about their marriages. You’re familiar with the “auto complete” function on Google, in which you type the first word, and Google fills in the most likely search phrases, right?

While writing this post, I typed in “My husband” and the auto responses included: hates me, is annoying, is gay, is a jerk, is verbally abusive.

I typed in “My wife,” and the auto responses included: is mean, is a high school girl, is having an affair, is a gangster. (OK, a couple of surprises there. In case you were wondering, My Wife is a Gangster is a Korean movie, and My Wife is a High School Girl is a Japanese series in which a girl marries her teacher.)

I typed in “My marriage” and the auto responders included: matters, is falling apart, is in trouble, is over. (My marriage matters leads you to a divorce attorney’s web site that purports to be against online services that encourage affairs.)

I suppose it is not surprising that so many are searching for answers to negative issues. After all, no one is looking for a solution to a happy marriage. However, I’m wondering if the searches reflect on a greater tendency to think the worst of our spouse (i.e. he is annoying), rather than to focus our energies on positive attributes or positive thoughts throughout our day.

When you think “My spouse,” what does your brain’s search function first bring to mind? Is it “lazy” or “inconsiderate”? Or is it something nicer … “sweet” or “fun”?

Michele Weiner-Davis shared an interesting article this week that described the principle of “acting as if.” She explained that many of us expect the worst from our mates when we need to approach them about something, and then help make that a self-fulfilling prophesy. For example, if you are on your way home and fear a negative response from your partner about something, you are more likely to make that happen. On the other hand, if you “act as if” you will receive a loving, caring response, you are also more likely to get that. She says, instead of being pessimistic, think of how you might turn the situation around. How would you handle it if you were expecting a positive response? “Then, regardless of how skeptical you might be about the possibilities of good things happening, ‘act as if.’  Do all the things you would do if you were convinced of a positive outcome.  Then watch the results,” says Weiner-Davis.

When you search (i.e. Google) your heart, do you find love? Do you picture a loving, supportive mate?  If not, seek ways to be more understanding and loving through words and actions. In many cases, that love and understanding will be returned in time. In the spirit of generosity for the season, let’s search for ways we can infuse good tidings into our interactions.

Note: the idea for the auto search on marriage came from Eyder Peralta from National Public Radio.

Photo credit: ©Nathalie P/PhotoXpress.com

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9 responses to “Google Your Heart to Find Love

  1. Great point! My wife and I have found that searching the Bible for what marriage should be has made all the difference for us. I think God has been around a little longer than Google.

  2. Lori, I think this idea of “as if” is so important to building trust and intimacy. It’s not a panacea, but I have seen it work in my own marriage. On the Google search thing, I occassionally check to see what searches have landed folks on my blog. Very interesting!

    I was amazed to read your post this morning, because I just posted about very similar topic just a few days ago. Great minds think alike! My focus was more on seeing past the “darkness” and weaknesses of our mates and into their “loveliness” and strengths, based on a passage from Song of Solomon.

    Thanks for sharing this really important message.

  3. Hi Scott! Will have to check out your post. Great minds! Thanks for chiming in.
    Lori

  4. It’s surprising what popular terminology is used to describe love and marriage. For example, for many generations a common slang term for a wife was the “old ball and chain.” “Love is a battlefield” was a hit anthem in the 80s, but how many of us actually frame our relationships in such contexts?
    It may sound cliche, but I agree that we need a paradigm shift in our thinking back to the positive when relating to our significant others.

    • Good point. I think a common frame we use is that love is hard work. While that can be true, I’d like to see a more positive frame of mind that shows sharing positive experiences and making loving choices isn’t always a battle. We can even set out to have fun with our mates, and that’s good, too! Take care.

  5. I will definitly put this to use and share with others…so true and just in time! Thank you:)

  6. Those who ‘flavor’ the search results in Google are the ones looking for answers because their marriage is falling apart, not because their marriage is great. A man in a great marriage is not going to search for things like “my spouse is…” He’s going to be busy being a great husband.

    Then there are those of us who realize that we need a MAJOR overhaul….like me. We are coming up on our 8th anniversary, and here I sit. Married to the neatest person I’ve ever met. She’s the axle to my wheel of life…yet we are so far apart. For about the last two years I knew something was wrong…just didn’t know what until last August. It’s been me. So I turned to the Internet. Case in point: I have a not-so-good marriage, where did I turn? Google, which brought me to several sites, including this one.

    There is a wealth of information out there. Take what you see with a grain of salt. Some of it may fly in the face of long-held religious beliefs, social stigmas, etc….but if one looking for answers and has the humility to admit that it may just be himself that needs to change, he’s got to be willing to pull that line until the flesh rips from the bones is his hands, AND KEEP PULLING!!!

    Rough analogy, yes, but at this point I think that type of injury would be less painful than what I feel now. I just hope it’s not too late for us.

    Marriage bloggers: Keep up the great work! You’re giving hope to those willing to listen.

    • Rich, I’m glad you found this blog. I hope you also check out my blogroll for other good ideas. I agree, one who has the humility to admit he or she needs to change has great odds for improving the marriage. I wish you and your bride all the best that marriage has to offer!
      Lori

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