The Dilemma of Saying I Love You

Yesterday, my oldest daughter and I had a brief conversation about a personal dilemma she was having with some friends at school. It was a lighthearted conversation on a topic she took very seriously – saying “I love you.”

While making a sandwich, she said how she felt awkward when at school, her friends say, “I love you” while saying goodbye leaving class. She said her response is typically something like. “I enjoy being in your presence too,” to which she often gets a cock-eyed look.

ONE DOES NOT SIMPLYShe went on to explain- it’s not that she doesn’t appreciate it being said, but that, for her, those words actually mean something important and she doesn’t want to give them out lightly, or as a generic greeting to everyone.

Personally, I connected right away with her quandary. Although I don’t remember many of my friends in high school coming up to me at the end of the day, giving me a hug and saying they loved me, when it came to girl friends, I was always very careful to choose my words of affection.

I felt the same way as my daughter. Those three words mean something to me beyond a salutation or something to be said at parting.

The words of The Princess Bride’s Inigo Montoya often came to mind. “You keep saying that word- I do not think it means what you think it means.”

It’s going to sound cliché, but the first person that wasn’t a family member that I said that to was actually Shannon (I know she probably doesn’t think I remember where we were, but the truth is we were sitting on her couch in her house when we were 17).

Then, this morning while eating breakfast, I was scrolling through YouTube and came across an interview with Kelly Clarkson (If you are a Friends fan, you will understand when I say she is on my “List”). In the interview, she was asked about her rough childhood with her parents’ divorce and money issues, then the interviewer asked about finding love.

Kelly essentially said the same thing my daughter said. She revealed that her husband was the first person she really meant it when she said, “I love you.” For her, those words mean something.

I’ve always wondered if my “I love you” hang up had to do with being a child of divorce. Like Kelly, is there a connection between my parents breaking up and my belief of commitment when saying those words?

However, my daughter certainly doesn’t have that challenge.

Maybe it was because I didn’t hear it that much as a kid. Then again, I’ve made an effort to make sure my kids don’t lack hearing it appropriately.

No matter the reason, I just really believe in the power of words. Those three words in particular. I think often times in our daily communication words are not respected in the way they were meant to be.

For example, is “integrity” situational, or is it the way you live?

Are you in a “commitment” until it is no longer convenient?

Is “I love you” a knee jerk reaction to someone saying it to you, or do you really mean it?

Do you practice “tolerance” as long as it is serving your cause or belief system?

Do you give “respect” to everyone, or only those who earn it?

Are your “values” the core of who you are, or are do they shift depending on the audience you’re with?

Are they really a “brave hero” who did something incredible or amazing, or did they just do the right thing?

Just because you claim it, does it really rise to the level of “expert” yet?

(Yes, I say this knowing it says “The Relationship Expert” above!)

In no way am I a wordsmith, and maybe I’m being way more cynical than I should be.

My challenge to you is to watch your words this week. Make sure you know that your word means what you think it means.

Do you really want to say a certain phrase that way, or will it hold more meaning if you chose to say something else? Do you actually mean it, or are you just responding with what you are “supposed” to say because of social pressure?

The only thing I could say to my daughter was that I agreed, and that I appreciated her conviction to the power of those words…and that I loved her.

Purpose, Passion and Play!


How would you rate your performance in your marriage?

I recently listened to a speech about our relationship to God that inspired me to ponder upon my own spirituality. how would-2

The gist of the talk was this:  If you knew you were going to meet God tomorrow, how would you rate yourself, on a scale of 1-10, as to your worthiness to meet Him?

In my thought process, my mind wondered to the comparison of marriage, as my mind often does. How this same concept could help create stronger marriages?

 Do you want to play along?

The fact is, one day in the far future (I hope), we will all be on our deathbed. I believe in that moment, we will be searching for a pair of eyes. The eyes will be the ones we have shared this life with and all the memories and blessings that came with it. Take a minute or two to ponder the questions that follow.

 If you knew you were going to die tomorrow, how would you rate yourself as a spouse on a scale of 1-10?

 Would you feel embarrassed at some of the things you said in a heated moment?

Would you feel gratitude that you never missed an opportunity to express love to them?

Would you be happy with your example of a spouse to your children?

Would you be confident in how well your spouse would rate you?

Unfortunately, none of us know the exact time of our death and when we ultimately will be asking ourselves these questions. There is an incredible gift in knowing that this. Because we know this, we have the power in this moment to choose something different. We have the opportunity to change how we would answer those questions so when the moment comes, we can answer with confidence.

 In order to help you upscale any lower scores you might have given your performance, I want to give you 6 steps that, if followed, will help you welcome that day with excitement instead of trepidation.

  1. Take Full Responsibility for Your Relationship.

I say it in all of my trainings, with all of my clients and just about every time I am in front of anyone, YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR YOU! If you want real happiness, peace and love in your life, you have to take responsibility for it. Not part of it. All of it. Why? Because if you do that, then you have more power over it.

If someone else is responsible for your happiness, then by default they are responsible for your sadness as well.

If your marriage is not serving you, then you be the one to do something about it…because you are the only one who can.

“The victim mindset dilutes the human potential. By not accepting personal responsibility for our circumstances, we greatly reduce our power to change them.” ― Steve Maraboli, Unapologetically You: Reflections on Life and the Human Experience


  1. Take Responsibility for Your Marriage Health.

When I first started the Business of Marriage, I taught a concept about the importance of marketing and advertising to your spouse. In business, marketing is about getting the attention of the potential client. Advertising is making sure they buy from you over and over again. Every business knows it’s just as important to retain your customers for your “product” than it is to recruit new ones. The same goes for your marriage.

When you first started dating, you did things that got him/her to take notice. They eventually bought in and you got hitched. So once they bought the one time, you stopped advertising to them? Not if you want to keep them engaged and excited about you.

Don’t just have date nights where you go to dinner and a movie, make it an event to remember.

Make sure you are not just asking for sex, but filling the emotional bucket with non-sexual touch.

Make sure you are making deposits with their emotional currency so that they will want to spend it on you.

If they have lost the habit of doing something you want them to do, show them, don’t just criticize them.

Be more inquisitive with intent to understand, than you are accusatory with the intent to win in your conversations.

Love doesn’t commit suicide. We have to kill it. Though, it’s true that it often simply dies of our neglect.- Diane Sollee


  1. Embrace Your Marriage Fully.

Are you playing full out in your marriage, or is your heart focused on “other possibilities”?

This is not just addressing affairs with other people, but other desires as well. Are you more invested in your job, your sports, your buddies, or even your past than you are you marriage? Is the fantasy of another life, a different path or a more exciting situation taking up your thoughts when that energy could be used towards strengthening what you have been already gifted?

If we commit ourselves to one person for life, this is not, as many people think, a rejection of freedom; rather, it demands the courage to move into all the risks of freedom, and the risk of love which is permanent; into that love which is not possession but participation.”― Madeleine L’Engle


  1. Become Really, Really Good at Asking for Forgiveness.

I get it! You are right. They are so wrong! If there was an Olympic sport for “wrongness” they would be the Gold, Silver and Bronze medal winner. Argument over.

AND… The faster you ask for forgiveness, the faster you will find the peace you are looking for.

Apologizing does not always mean that you are wrong and the other person is right. It just means that you value your relationship more than your ego.– Unknown

  1. Become Really, Really Good at Giving Forgiveness.

How fast is your forgiveness cycle? Here’s a hint: you control it. The faster it becomes, the happier YOU will be.

The fact is, if you want to receive it, you better get really good at giving it. It has been said that the more you practice something, the better you get at it. Luckily, in marriage, we have plenty of opportunities to practice both asking for and giving forgiveness.

I can forgive, but I cannot forget, is

6. Accept Frustrations, Disagreements and Dry Spells of Love as Part of the Marriage Journey.

In Dr. John Gottman’s 25 plus years of research on marriage, he has found that 69% of the challenges and frustrations you have with your spouse are never going to go away. These are what he calls perpetual problems. Before you think that’s a high number, it’s important to know that the same percentage goes for your spouse when it comes to their challenges with you. Should you think maybe a better choice in spouse would have produced better statistics, the research shows that you would just find another 69% of perpetual problems in that person as well.

The great news? That means in order to have a happy and thriving relationship, I only have to focus on the 31% of the challenges in my relationship in order to have real, lasting happiness. I don’t know about you, but I’ll take working on 31% over 61% any day.

When it comes to dry spells of love, which should be expected, this quote sums up my feelings very well.

“In any relationship, there will be frightening spells in which your feelings of love dry up. And when that happens you must remember that the essence of marriage is that it is a covenant, a commitment, a promise of future love. So what do you do? You do the acts of love, despite your lack of feeling. You may not feel tender, sympathetic, and eager to please, but in your actions you must BE tender, understanding, forgiving and helpful. And, if you do that, as time goes on you will not only get through the dry spells, but they will become less frequent and deep, and you will become more constant in your feelings. This is what can happen if you decide to love.”― Timothy Keller, The Meaning of Marriage: Facing the Complexities of Commitment with the Wisdom of God

Day to day we will have struggles and challenges in our marriage. That is ok. Just like any struggle you have, it will make you stronger if you have the right goal in mind. Struggles can teach us more about ourselves than anything else if we let them.

Follow these simple 6 guidelines and when that future day comes and you are looking deep into the eyes of your spouse, I’m going to guarantee the scale won’t even be a thought in your head. 

What do you think? We would love to hear your thoughts.


P.S. Feel free to Pin the image below.

Take Full Responsibility for Your-2


4 Romantic Winter Dates to Warm You Up

I don’t know about where you are, but here in Utah, it’s pretty cold!  When it gets this cold, I tend to hibernate inside, and then get cabin fever. To combat that, a fun date night is the perfect cure for cold weather blues.

Forget the dinner and a movie routine because romance can be found in unexpected places when the weather turns chilly. With these date ideas, you can use this winter as an opportunity to snuggle up and really get to know your loved one!

Check out 4 great ideas here!



Live stock is the correct gift for your 20th wedding anniversary, right?

Way back in 1994 my favorite show Friends started, Tanya Harding tried to have Nancy Kerrigan taken out with a pipe by a guide named Gillooly, OJ Simpson took a joy ride in a white Bronco and the wedding of the year was not when Elvis’ daughter tied the knot with The King of Pop!

No the real wedding of the year happened on October 29th between me and my childhood friend & high school sweetheart, Shannon.

I can’t believe it’s been 20 years! (I can’t believe she has that much patience)

Shannon and I through the years

So we wanted to do something really cool for our anniversary. We have been thinking about it for a while now. What to do? Do we go on a big trip to Europe and drive the coast of Italy? Do we run down to the Caribbean and snorkel in the clear waters just as it’s starting to get really cold here? Do we go back to our honeymoon spot, DisneyWorld and recreate the “magic”? (To be clear, that was completely my idea and Shannon took about .5 seconds to say I was crazy) We were stumped.

It’s a totally first world problem I know, however, Shannon and I really don’t do big things for our birthdays or anniversaries. But this is our 20th. For a kid who always thought a marriage is not solidified and secure until it hits 13 years (the length of my parents marriage) this is a big deal for me.

When in the process of deciding, we got an invitation to not only have an amazing experience, but to actually celebrate what we do with The Business of Marriage by teaching it as well…in Africa!

A friend of ours Ann Webb takes a few people every year on a trip/ safari to Africa with her program Ideal Life Vision. Her program is all about teaching people how to create their life via goals and mindset. Part of her program covers relationships and we have been honored to be guest experts a fee times on webinars, teleconferences and coaching calls for her clients. She started doing charity and humanitarian work in Africa a few years ago and now has a school, sponsors people with businesses, and has even certified locals as Ideal Life Vision mentors there.

We have always had an open invitation from Ann to go with her and teach the basics of strong relationships and with our anniversary coming up, Shannon saw an opportunity to not just travel, but to give back.

It’s actually a full circle opportunity for us.

When we started the Business of Marriage, we had hoped someday to take the message to Africa in particular. We had read about how after decades of civil war and trauma many, if not most, of the elderly and experienced in marriage had died or been killed. So there were no examples to the current generation of what a good marriage looks like. We knew the simple systems and programs we give to our clients and event participants to create the marriages they want would be easily implemented for the African people. This was our opportunity to fulfill that goal.

So next month, on my birthday to be exact (Nov 13) we will be heading out to Kenya Africa for 2 weeks. There we will stay with the Masai tribe, go on a safari, attend a traditional wedding and teach basic marriage principles. We are excited to share out experiences with you when we get back.

You might be thinking..

“That’s great for you, Dino, but why should I care?”

I’m glad you asked. As part of our trip we have been asked to participate in the humanitarian side of the experience by helping purchase a cow or goat for few families. But it’s not just about giving a family a cow, it’s about giving them a future. They actually can use the live stock as a business to better their life. Selling the milk or eggs is a huge opportunity for them. As an entrepreneur this really speaks to my heart. We have been supporters of micro loan companies for over a decade now and to be able to deliver the animal to the family ourselves is really exciting.

So we are asking for you to join us in this effort by donating to our cause. You can do so with just a few dollars or if you want to donate the full amount we will actually name the animal after you, take a picture of us delivering it to the family and sent that to you. You will actually be able to witness the joy of your donation.

Here’s how you can help:
We would like to be able to donate one cow and 4 goats. With your help I know we can raise enough to change the lives of a few African families.

Each cow costs $600.
A goat is $50
You can donate the whole amount if you like (tax deduction) or a minimum of $10. Let us know which fund you want it to go to, let us know. If you don’t care then we will put it to the most needed fund.
Esther Ayako and family
Don’t forget, this could be a find thing for your family or office. We are going to name the animal after you if you donate the entire amount. Or if you have a group of people we will put all you names on it like the picture above.
All you have to do is send money via my paypal. If you have a PayPal address just send it to, with you name and where you want the funds to go to, a cow or a goat.
If you don’t have PayPal you can still donate. Just click on this link and it will show you how.
Whatever you donate it will be really appreciated by us as well as by that family you affect for the rest of their lives.
Thanks for your help.
Purpose, passion and play,

Core Values and Guiding Principles

How do you have a strong and passionate marriage? Having specific guiding principles and values in your marriage help you to create common ground. It allows you to have a true anchor in your marriage and family when the tough times come.
Dino Watt, The Relationship Expert from The Business of Marriage shares his ideas on why it is important for you to create specific guiding principles in your marriage and family.

Show #13: Jon Nastor: Hack The Entrepreneur, Online Enterpreneur

Show #13: Jon Nastor: Hack The Entrepreneur, Online Entrepreneur

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Jon is a proud dad and husband who creates, markets, and sells products online.Unable since birth to settle for how things should be, he constantly aims to satisfy pains and frustrations with products that make people’s life easier.

He’s latest creation is called VelocityPage, a WordPress plugin that allows anyone to create beautiful landing pages in minutes — without code. He is also the host of a soon to be released podcast called Hack The Entrepreneur.


Marriage Tip:

Remember what you focused on expands, so if you are going to focus on negatives guess you’re going to get more of, that is right! more negative. So if you focus on the positive, you’ll get more positive.

Treat the man as he is and that’s what he will be, treat the man that you want him to be and that’s what he will become. So focus on the positive things you want to expand not the negative things that makes you upset.


How they Met?

They met in a friend’s birthday party in Canada.


When did God “Laugh”?

Planned to live in Vancouver, it is a very beautiful place but due to family issue, health issues and situation they have to live in Thunder Bay, very small town and very isolated.


Hardest Thing About Being/ being married to an Entrepreneur?

Fear of having big visions and seeing them not come to flourish and fear of not giving my wife what she deserves in life, his wife on the other hand is kind of uncomfortable when he tends to over work himself.


Favorite Thing About Being a/Married to an Entrepreneur?

Having the support of having his wife as a partner.


How Do You Separate Your Business from Marriage?

Limits his self on taking projects that will occupy his life, he wants to be portable to his family.


Favorite Book?

The War of Art


Super Power?

Being deliberate.


Best advice?

Learn to say sorry.


Eulogy Life Message:

Life is short so just try the best you can each day.


Business Contact Information:



06: Kris and Kaleen Krohn: Real estate, real focus

06: Kris and Kaleen Krohn:

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Kris Krohn purchased his first real estate investment property while a college student and owned 12 properties by the time he Kris Krohn Picturegraduated. A year later he had bought his 25th home and replaced his job with a six-figure investment income. Since then, he has bought and sold several hundred properties, and today maintains ownership in hundreds of positive cash-flow homes.

Kris is the author of two best selling books, The Strait Path to Real Estate Wealth and the Conscious Creator.

As co-founder of The Strongbrook Group, Kris Krohn formed the original vision for a group of companies that would help clients create, manage, protect and grow their wealth.

We are excited to welcome Kris and his awesome wife Kaleen to the show. Get ready to take some notes because these two have a ton of amazing tips on how to have both a great business and an event greater marriage.

To top it off both Kris and Kaleen hold Bachelor’s degree in Marriage, Family and Human Development.

Marriage Tip:

Your job is not always to be the superhero, your job is just be a good listener. Try it our wiht her tonight when you come her, sit down, ask her about her day and just let her talk. Be a great listener, focus on asking great questions but don’t try to be the superhero. You don’t have to fix everything

How they Met?

They met at very young age, they met during college on a class.

When did God “Laugh”?

Kris planned to retire at the age of 26 but instead he was heading to a direction of more success due to Kaleen motivating  him about his biggest purpose.

Hardest Thing About Being/ being married to an Entrepreneur?

Turning a capital into daily business or budgeting to keep the business going.

Favorite Thing About Being a/Married to an Entrepreneur?

To travel a lot.

How Do You Separate Your Business from Marriage?

Everyday they start together and end the day together, adopted digital diet that means no computer, emails or cellphone for 3 hours for real deep connection with each other and 3 days a week for night dates.

Favorite Book?

Kris: Out witting the Devil
Kaleen: The Little house on the Prairie

Super Powers?

Kris: Manifesting
Kaleen: Patience

Eulogy Life Message:

Kris: I would trade all the money in the world to pass unto my chidren, live in passion, purpose and fulfillment.
Kaleen: Just the love of other people, treating every person as a real person with real needs in real passion and real dreams not sliding anyone or putting down anybody’s dream no matter what they are

Business Contact Information?