Alright ladies, what’s this “Marriage You Never Wanted” stuff all about? I remember the first time I heard someone speak about reactivity. My initial thought was, “So my husband doesn’t have to stop doing stupid stuff, I’m just supposed to not get mad about it? No thank you!” But the more I became consciously aware of the way I reacted to Ben, I couldn’t believe what a naggy, whiny, discontented wife I sounded like! Was that really me?
We’ve been doing some marriage coaching with a couple recently and the wife called me last week excited to share a story. They had a dinner party planned with another couple. A few days before, her husband found out he would have to work that night. She was not happy about it at all. Normally, a big fight would have ensued along with multiple guilt trips throughout that week.
Instead, she took a pause and decided to react differently. She opted to make the best of it and invited her parents to join them for the dinner. No fighting. No guilt trips. When her husband came home later that night, she was tempted to say, “Will you put up the leftovers, it’s the least you could do?!”, but she took another pause and asked him without the sarcasm, “When you get a chance, will you put the leftovers up?”
He said, “Sure,” in disbelief at how calm she was. They ended up putting the leftovers up together and having a good conversation and a peace-filled night. She said this was earth-shattering for them and their relationship. It easily could have turned into a huge argument leaving them both resentful.
This is a perfect example of what MYNW is about! Consciousness. Shifting. Freedom. Imagine if every conversation you had with your spouse was like this! In what ways could your relationship grow if you stopped focusing on your needs being met and instead focused on yourself and the way you react to your spouse? For me personally, it is life-changing!