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How to Be an Adult in Relationships: The Five Keys to Mindful Loving Paperback – June 18, 2002

4.5 out of 5 stars 238 customer reviews

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  • How to Be an Adult in Relationships: The Five Keys to Mindful Loving
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  • How to Be an Adult: A Handbook for Psychological and Spiritual Integration
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  • When the Past Is Present: Healing the Emotional Wounds that Sabotage our Relationships
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Approaching the study of relationships from a psychotherapist's perspective is How to Be an Adult in Relationships: The Five Keys to Mindful Loving. Teacher and writer David Richo gives practical and spiritual exercises for couples and singles who want to have mature and lasting relationships. Emphasizing paying attention and letting go, Richo gently and compassionately coaches readers on what he calls the five A's: attention, acceptance, appreciation, affection and allowing. His book, which proposes "letting go of ego," will help those seeking personal transformation in their relationships. (June)
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Review

"Well-constructed and thought-provoking."—Spirituality & Health

"An inspiring and highly practical guide to effective relationships."—Kathlyn Hendricks, coauthor of Conscious Loving and The Conscious Heart
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Shambhala; 1 edition (June 18, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1570628122
  • ISBN-13: 978-1570628122
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (238 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,783 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By J. Marui on April 28, 2005
Format: Paperback
I bought two books by this author: How to be an adult, and How to be an adult in relationships. Both are excellent.

Even though their titles begin with How to... these are not self-help books.

In this book, the author discusses what love is: giving attention, acceptance, appreciation, affection and allowing - the five A's as he calls it. The language used is beautiful, the way the author thinks is inspiring, and you can just feel that he himself is a loving person. No ego-based, "let me tell you how amazing I am" paragraphs here.

The book is valuable as a piece of literature, as a philosophical and psychological work. I reread and contemplated many pages.

The bottom line is this: if you are looking for a quick-fix, feel good book - skip this one. If you are prepared to do the work, if you are not afraid of realization that learning how to love is a life-long process, and are not scared of (as another reviewer put it) big words, this is the book that is worth reading - again and again.
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I originally sought books to help me get over a man in my life that is still IN my life, but not committed to me. We are the classic "friends with benefits" only he's benefiting more than I am...much more. This book has reinforced in a HUGE way what I already knew but chose to ignore. It teaches us how change IS scary...even if it's healthy change. It's scary because it's what we become to know and feel comfortable with after awhile. It reaches deep into the psyche and shows why we stay in relationships that aren't so healthy. It connects us to our childhood, but not in a crutching sort of manner like some readings which "blame" our current choices all on childhood incidences, but rather shows us why we possibly make some of the decisions that we do.
You won't be disappointed in this book. I had to force myself to put it down and sleep. I read it in two days. I underlined SO many sections that applied to me. This book is a lifetime keeper!!! Get one for you or someone close to you if you feel they need to make some changes in the way they choose relationships in their lives. You (or them) will be happy you did!!!
One warning...It's very truthful. Sometimes when you hear something you dont like, it can have a profound effect. I cried reading this book several times because it talked about my life...my thought processes and my feelings when choosing and staying with a partner.
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Format: Paperback
...our individual lives, all relationships, and the world would be magnificent beyond anything we've so far imagined or believed could be possible. High and deserved praise for this book.

I read this book a few years ago and refer to it time and again to not only remind myself but also to share with friends regarding their relationships. This book is like having multiple books in one. I'd like to write some highlights for you, but the entire book is a highlight. Some samplings, however, of this great book...

"Here are the words of an adult: "Even though you please me sexually, even though we have been together so long, even though I don't know whether I will ever find somone else, I have to let you go because you do not meet me at my soul/adult level." "Here are the words of a codependent: "Because you please me sexually, because we have been together so long, because I don't know whether I will ever find someone else, I can't let you go-- even though you do not meet me at my soul/adult level."

"As adolescents, we were taught that the way to tell we are in love is by our loss of control, our loss of will, and a compelling sense that we could not have done otherwise. This falling in love contrasts with the reality of rising in love with conscious choice, sane fondness, intact boundaries, and ruthless clarity." Referring to the former, Richo adds, "...that kind of reaction is actually a signal from the needy child within, telling us what we need to work on, not directing us to our rescuer."

"Love can be confused with clinging that is welcomed by the other, sexual desire that is satisfied by the other, or neediness that is fulfilled by the other.
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Format: Paperback
This book moved me enough to actually write this review, not something I would normally do.

I picked this book up in the middle of the night after waking from an anxiety attack about what was happening in my very new "relationship" with a woman whom I had fallen head over heals for, at age 59, and who had just told me she needed space and I needed to deal with some of my issues before we could continue. This book was sitting in her kitchen -- her therapist had recommended she read it -- and I started reading random chapters hoping it would put me back to sleep. Hours later, I realized I had to buy this book because it resonated so clearly and deeply with me.

I have read John Kabat-Zinn's books about mindfulness, and have made periodic, albeit less than whole-hearted attempts at meditating and other forms of mindfulness, but this book put it in a context which had immediacy and urgency to me. It literally helped snap me out of the "ether". Part of its appeal/resonance is its broad inclusions of different forms of pyschological practices mixed with spiritual insights and a lot of sound personal observation of us mortal human beings.

After numerous years of therapy and self-help/self-therapy, this book made me take ACTION to genuinely change, and it has helped me see how/where I need to change, and given me the assurance and comfort to believe that we can indeed change ourselves (though people under 30 might not be able to appreciate this as much until they've had more life experiences to be able to discern the patterns of their life). I have mentioned this book to everyone I know who might be interested, including a few former therapists/counselors. I'm sure I'll be keeping this book close by for a long time.
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