Which Essays are Popular? (Updated December 4, 2016)

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A bend in the trail of life, and on the way up to Scenic Point, Two Medicine, Glacier Park, Montana. "Heading up, at times you gotta switch directions."

Hello, All.

It’s the end of 2016.  I am mostly retired, have hit 74, and yet still I am playing “WHAT ARE THEY READING?”  Instead of writing a book*, I decided to make my “notes” available, via Internet, to anybody.  And instead of marketing, I have used word-of-mouth or touch-of-keyboard to spread awareness.  I have posted 190 articles in over eight years since March 2005.  In the past four years since June of 2012, when I moved my site to WordPress, they’ve been downloaded 884,209 times.

Top Reads

The top read articles seem to be becoming a fairly steady set.  The very “top of the top” is that article on What to do when he/she leaves.  I imagine that three months 9,586 hurting people came here, while their partners, 9,586 also hurting people, were elsewhere.     Thanks to all of  you

Summary Thoughts

While I’ve been sharing and watching what people do with my writings I have come to certain simple conclusions.

  • He/she leaves you cuz the relationship you have with them “sucks” – for them.  And it has probably been “sucky” for some time.  If it takes someone leaving to get your attention, so be it.  Get to work and learn quickly.  Fix it.
  • Do not rush your partner.  Do not let your partner rush you.  Develop a pace in talking and doing that is easy for both of you. Make sure you develop easy skills of being together and being apart.
  • The partner who seems to drag their feet is the one who sets the pace of growth in the relationship.  You two can’t move faster than the slower one’s pace.  But you absolutely also need the pressure and impatience of the faster one, to keep things moving.  Both are important. 
  • If you don’t learn how a) to PreValidate and Validate, b) remove MasterTalk,  and c) learn the verbal sharing skills taught quickly by Mirroring then you are probably “screwed”.
  • Use skills that build safety and get rid of all habits that threaten each other.
  • Express feelings often and always safely.
  • Take turns being appropriately selfish.
  • Learn to like your views/beliefs and make plenty of room for others to disagree.

Of Interest

Stuff I do.  There is a series of interviews by Laura LaVigne, eight 1-hour visits with me, all downloadable in MP3.  I’ve taught several classes for her during the last few years, and put all my colorful handouts here.  Sprinkled throughout are other MP3 downloadable audio files that you can buy, drop onto your IPod/Ipad or a CD and listen in your car.  Also you can find me on Facebook.   I do consult with people by phone.



Discussion Website

I have spent much time online in one of the many communities that have sprung up to share thoughts and struggles about relationships.  I congratulate them all, but have found a current home at Marriage Advocates.  If you want to see many new comments of mine on familiar topics, check them out.  Also, I encourage those of you, who are really grasping what I write, to consider sharing what you have learned and to work with others.

Ranking of Articles

The following is the ranking of my top articles in the last three months thru Feb 11, 2016. Thanks to all of you for reading, learning something, for sharing it with others, and for referring people here.  I hope what I have shared is helpful to you. If it has been, you might let me know.  If you want me to focus new writing on some area, please let me know.  I have a list. Also I may use your priorities to re-write or expand some of my more popular articles. Drop me an email at al@alturtle.com.

2016-12-04, Last Quarter Statistics  
Rank Title Views
1 What to do when He/She Leaves? 9,586
2 What to do when he/she won’t talk to you. 6,776
3 Home page / Archives 3,849
4 Feelings and Emotions: The Essay, Part One 2,766
5 Reliable Membership: The Essay 845
6 When to Fold ’Em? 794
7 Map of Relationships: listen to or read the whole story 744
8 Safety and The Lizard: The Essay 545
9 Getting an Answer: When He/She Won’t Make a Decision 464
10 Using Al Turtle Logic on Relationship Troubles 428
11 “Out of the Blue” means “Read the Tea Leaves” 405
12 Boundaries for Individuals: The Essay 361
13 Feeling Words 326
14 The Road to Empathy: The Essay 287
15 MASTER/SLAVE, Two World Problem: The Essay 269
16 Words / Lyrics for the Holiday Sing-Along with Mitch Miller 243
17 Where do you start? What goes first? 236
18 Mirroring: The Skill 229
19 Feelings and Emotions: The Essay, Part Two (FEAR, ANGER, GRIEF, JOY) 228
20 Feelings and Emotions: The Essay, Part Four, Appropriate Expression 221
21 It is Not Fair! The Testicle Principle 210
22 The Gentle Art of Pulling 190
23 Resentments: Getting Rid of Them 180
24 Getting to Work 176
25 It only takes ONE to make a marriage, but TWO to make a divorce. 164
26 The Power of Passivity: The Essay 160
27 How to Use this Website 146
28 Boundaries for Couples: The Essay 137
29 Map of Relationships (Full Version Script) Part III 135
30 Peace Building: The Essay 132
31 To be Safe You Must Share 129
32 Validation: The Skill and the Art 129
33 Combating Loneliness 125
34 Vintage Love: What does it look like? 113
35 Where are you? What type of Relationship do you Have? Right now! 111
36 The Problem with Expectations 101
37 The Biological Dream: An Excerpt 100
38 TimeOuts: The Skill 97
39 Guilt, Fault, and Who is to Blame 96
40 Diversity and PreValidation: The Essay 93
41 Healing Frustrations: The Essay 93
42 “Tortoise Trainer” by Osman Hamdi Bei 91
43 Earn it or Spend it: Interpersonal Capital 90
44 About Us 85
45 Find Mr. Right or Ms. Right 84
46 Behavior Change Requests (BCRs) 83
47 Map of Relationships (Full Version Script) Part IV 83
48 Map of Relationships (Full Version Script) Part VI 80
49 How to Chat with Al 78
50 Noticing the Lizard in yourself and others. 77


Which Essays are Popular? (Updated December 4, 2016) — 7 Comments

  1. Hey, Al!  I found your website through eNotAlone, where numerous folks recommended your writings.  I experienced my first break-up earlier this year, and I wandered, lost and confused, for a long time.
    Your work has really opened my eyes (particularly the Safety and the Lizard and Clingers/Avoiders essays) to a lot of the mistakes I made in the relationship.  Now that I have a better understanding of why my former partner and I did the things we did, I am beginning to let go of my hurt and resentment.
    I want to say "thank you" for the very positive impact you have made on my life.  I look forward to reading more of your writings and continuing to grow!

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