Remember the story of Chicken Little who ran around wailing that the sky was falling?And Winnie the Pooh’s friend Eeyore who always sees things from a pessimistic perspective. Poor Eeyore, the glass was always half empty and the grass was greener in someone else’s yard.
Here’s a personal growth lesson – work on you! It’s amazing that we can come up with all sorts of advice that would make our spouse a better person. If only they would change this, learn to say things differently, dress better, or if they would just have some manners! Wow, life could be so much easier. It’s easy to see what others could change.
Instead, we need to be better at seeing what we can change in ourselves to improve our relationship with our spouse.
Let me ask you this: Have you arrived? Or are you a work in progress? Hopefully you chose the second and see there are things YOU need to change to improve your relationship. Take responsibility for those things right now. Don’t wait until “they” get “their” stuff together. You get your stuff together! Work on you. Be positive. Change takes time but you can make small incremental positive steps forward .
Do you need some ideas of what to work on? That’s really simple. ASK! That’s it. Ask
your spouse this question,
“Honey, what are a few things that I can work on to show you I love you?”
Then add this,
“No, really, I would like to know because I want to work at those things you need from me to help us have a closer relationship.”
She will probably be skeptical because she’s been telling you for years. But, be positive. Even if she has a “Yeah, right, you’re going to work on it” attitude. Commit to work on changing YOU.
For example, your wife may need a “break time.” Away from kids, chores, dishes and floors. So, plan ahead and give her a note saying you will watch the kids while she has the day with friends, shopping, or whatever she’d like. One husband packed her suitcase, checked her into a hotel room, said good night, and left. He told her he wanted her to have some alone time to relax, read, and just take a break. She loved it.
Find out what would make your wife feel loved and just do it!
Here’s another example: your husband may really appreciate it you would take the lead in the bedroom some time. For some of you ladies, that may be a stretch. Just go for it. You know what he likes! Make him feel special. Be positive and see what a wonderful response you get.
And finally, we all need to remember the story of the Little Engine that said over and over again, “I think I can, I think I can”. Work on those things in you that will have a positive impact on your relationship and see what happens.