By: David I. Defoe, LCPC, NCC
The other day when I went to take out my trash, I took notice of my neighbors yard. Sure it is the dawn of winter and the vegetation common to his yard was gone for the season. But I noticed the meticulous care he put into his yard. The leaves were all raked up, he had trash bags around his planter pots to preserve the annual flowers which bloom in the spring. Unlike in my yard, his tools were all packed up and everything seemed perfect and in order.
To be honest I was envious.
I began to ask myself, why in the world does my back yard not look like that? The answer was so simple… I had not made the commitment to making my yard neat, clean, and the envy of others. I heard someone say one time (or perhaps I read it somewhere), if you think the grass is greener on the other side, water your own lawn.
The reason people have successful marriages has nothing to do with luck, or even with great compatibility (even though that does help big time), but they are successful because couples work at it. They are successful because they are committed to doing what it takes to make their marriage the envy of others.
Over the next few weeks I will share 12 Principles for Building a Stronger Marriage… Here are the first two:
- Don’t EVER Expect Perfection– Allow your husband/wife to be human. They will make mistakes, and so will you. We cannot place so high an expectation on our husbands/wives which they will never be able to fulfill (this goes for non-marital relationships as well). We did not marry a perfect person… we married someone with the potential for failure, flaws, faults and we have to be compassionate and loving enough to create an environment for personal growth. Growth never occurs where unrealistic demands place a stranglehold on us.
- Leave the Past in the Past – History is for textbooks. Learn the art of forgiveness and forgetfulness. As long as an issue has been resolved and not swept under the rug… let it go. If you have a spouse that is constantly reminding you about something you have done in the past, you may not have dealt with the problem effectively. But if the issue is resolved… don’t dig up the old bodies you have buried… it will only make everything around you stink
Until Next Week…