In yesterday’s blog, we read that it is futile to engage in warfare without a battle plan, a strategy, a mission. And to successfully fight with our husband, we have to determine what we really want. Today’s tip is based on a similar warfare strategy:
Tip #23 Do not initiate a fight that is destined for ultimate failure. Although in warfare, there is some merit in waging a losing battle for the ultimate benefit of the war, in marriage, there is no glory in losing a battle that has no ultimate purpose. Determine what you don’t want.
After we take a moment to determine what we really want, it’s a good strategy to take a moment to determine what we don’t want.
- We don’t want to attack our husband.
- We don’t want to hurt our husband.
- We don’t want to diminish his self worth and pride by being critical without purpose.
- We don’t want to start a fight that ends in bloody defeat, or him walking off the battlefield, or a battle that cuts his legs out from under him, leaving him impotent and weakened on a battlefield of defeat.
- We don’t want to distract the real issue with a side-skirmish.
- We don’t want to create a stand-off that lasts for hours or days. . . or weeks. . . or months. . . or a lifetime. . .
Let’s create a hypothetical skirmish. We’ve probably all had this little altercation:
As women, we want undivided time with our husband. Perhaps we think he is spending too much time and effort with his hobbies and/or buddies, and not enough time with us. We are feeling neglected and that makes us feel vulnerable in the relationship.
Step 1: We have determined what we want: more time with him, to feel important, to have him invest his energies, his attention, his affection on us. That is a valid desire. Okay, so take your battle positions, ready, aim, fire!. . . No! Do not engage the enemy. . . your husband. . . Hold your position! Before we take fire, let’s complete step number two.
Step 2: Now determine what we DO NOT want. We don’t want to fire on him by saying things like “You never. . . You always. . . You don’t. . .” That creates an immediate defensive position. He has to defend himself against a perceived attack – and he might just fire back. We don’t want to be a repellent attacker. We don’t want him to shut-down and not listen to us. We want to be an attractive appealer. We want him to want to spend more time with his beautiful attractive wife!
I certainly don’t want to drive him away. . . so that he spends more time away from me . . . with his hobbies. . . because every time he comes home I talk about how he’s never home. . . . so that he wants to avoid me. . . and I repel him instead of attracting him. . . see the never-ending circle?
So, is there something particular you want in your marriage? Before you attempt to go after it, with both barrels blazing. . . determine what you don’t want.
Tomorrow I’ll share a hint to get what you want, while avoiding what you don’t want! Don’t worry, there is plenty of time to fight another day!
Meanwhile, choose your battles wisely!
If you have some extra time while waiting for the smoke to clear on the battlefield, do one of these extras:
- Write down two or three things that occur when you engage in battle with your husband.
- Does your husband annoy you by spending too much time with his hobbies or buddies? Write a list of two or three things you could do to encourage him in his interests. . . and also make it very attractive for him to come home to you!
- Make a list of two or three things you could do for fun while waiting for him to come home from his hobbies. Next time he’s gone — make some time for yourself – and be his fun and welcoming and refreshed wife when he comes home to you!