Good morning everyone. Welcome to another blog post on RandyCarney.com. These videos are often called “Walking with Randy” and I talk about writing, speaking, coaching, marketing, and marriage.
Today, I’m going to add this to the feature page that talks about a life in the day. Sometimes you hear about a day in the life.
Many of you know that we have been trying to make arrangements to get to Japan to see our son, Rusty, daughter-in-law, Brenda, and grandchildren, Grace, Catherine, and Kelton. They are missionaries over there.
We try to get over to see them in the middle of each of their four-year term. We tried to go in September of 2021. We ordered tickets and scheduled our flight. Then we had to keep extending the date until they ran out in February of this year.
Fortunately, the third-party company that got us the tickets went to bat for us and they got us a refund on everything except for some of the fees.
We heard just within the last two weeks, that Japan was opening up for tourists so we are going over there on a tourist visa that lasts for 90 days. That’s how we’ve done in the past, even though we will be doing ministry while we’re there.
One of the ministries that we do is babysitting and providing r&r for the missionaries.
We also join them in some of their ministry activities. Most times that we’ve been over there in the past, I had the opportunity to speak several times and I suspect I will get to do that again.
So Rhonda and I are excited about being able to go. This is what’s going on in our lives and it’s a “life in a day” post for the blog.
I have a question for you: What are your short-term goals when it comes to meeting your spouse’s needs?
The last few blog posts have been working on steps toward meeting each other’s needs in marriage. This is a further breakdown of step four.
The first thing you did is come up with a list of needs. You ranked each of those needs in order of importance to you, and so did your spouse. You then traded those lists with each other.
Next, you used the information in the list and those to help you understand your spouse better.
Now you’re actually into the nitty gritty of working toward projects or actions that will help you accomplish the goal of making your spouse feel better about marriage.
The reason why they will feel better about it is that their needs will be met.
I’m talking about making adjustments to your time focus.
Time is the stuff that life is made of. If you can not put in the time, you can not put in life.
In the first part of making adjustments to time focus, I said that you need to reorder things now that you’ve found out what is important to your spouse. Depending on how much of a revelation that was for you, you may find that you need to reorder your priorities.
The last post talked about looking at your long-term goals. The long-term goals came from the lifetime goals broken down into yearly goals, and the yearly goals were broken down into quarterly goals.
Go From Quarterly to Weekly to Daily Goals
Now you want to work with your short-term goals.
To come up with those short-term goals, take the quarterly goals and break them down to weekly ones. They should be the same for the week, just different projects you do on a daily basis.
So you go from quarterly to weekly to daily.
Cut Items Where Necessary
Once you have done that, you’ll more than likely have to cut something out of your already busy schedule.
Now, if you have the freedom in your schedule where you can add things, for example, if you’re retired, then you have more time flexibility. If you work for yourself and you’ve done all the hard work, and you’re past the stage where you’re working 80 hours a week on a business, you may have a more flexible schedule.
Otherwise, you may have to find something to cut out. It may be that it will be something you enjoy doing. But you are putting a higher priority on your marriage and your spouse and helping to meet your spouse’s needs.
Once you’ve looked at your schedule and found where you need to cut some things out, it’s time to add in some projects.
Schedule Ideas and Actions
At least a few times a week, ideally, you would be working on projects that will improve your spouse’s feelings about your marriage.
You could just go down his or her list and find something that has become apparent that you have not done as well as perhaps you thought you had. Maybe you hadn’t really realized how important that item was to your spouse.
So between your clients and your schedule, include time for daily projects to work on all of those things that your spouse may have a need for.
Recreation is a case where one or the other of you have engaged in that you might start looking for ways to add recreational activities and to your weekly schedule.
If you are a husband and your wife has a need for affection and romance, you might want to bite the bullet and perhaps watch a romantic movie together. That is something I do for my wife. She enjoys watching those movies, so I will watch them with her. Although, I really do like them, too. (Just don’t let the rest of the men hear me say that.) But it’s mostly about spending time together.
You could find something different that you can do in the area of showing affection. If you do not kiss your wife very often, you might make a list saying, “I learned to kiss my wife at three different times during the day.”
Those are just some examples of schedules of ideas. One man figured out that a very good thing he could do for his wife was to leave work at 5:30. He found out that they probably weren’t going to get all the work done anyway, so it was silly staying 2 hours later trying to get it done. It was better for him to go home and spend time with his wife. The work would still be there in the morning.
Those are some examples of how you can try to come up with daily goals or projects that would help you to meet your husband or wife’s most important needs.
I hope this has been helpful to you.
If you would like more tips on marriage, or to see the preceding posts in this series, just click here to be taken to all my blog posts about marriage.
There are more books planned, as well. The next book to come out will be about valuing your spouse and the one following that will deal with physical and spiritual intimacy. Watch for those coming soon.
Thanks for reading. I’m Randy Carney, wishing you the best in your marriage.
In the last several blog posts, I’ve been talking about improving your marriage. I’m continuing on that topic today.
I have been talking about the general topic of the importance of meeting each other’s needs in marriage.
I started off with the first step of making a list of needs. That started off with a premade list. I suggested that as you looked over it and saw something that you felt was left out, put it on your list. If each of you added something, you would have wound up with 12 items on your list. If only one of you added something, there would have been 11 items on your list. If both of you were satisfied with the pre-made list, you would have 10 items on your list.
Then each of you went through and ranked each item on the list in order of importance with one being the most important.
After that, you traded your lists and discussed the ranking you gave each item.
That was the first step.
The second step was how what you learned from the process of making and trading the lists helped you to have a greater understanding of each other as husbands and wives. Just knowing that you have a greater understanding of each other’s needs could benefit your marriage quite a bit.
In this step, you’re moving on to actually doing something with this list.
Last time, I talked about reordering your priorities. There, you saw that you had made a commitment to work on those projects in ways that would benefit your marriage.
Here, I’m talking about looking at the top one, two, or three needs that your spouse has. You want to work on making sure those three needs are fulfilled.
So the first part of this was reordering or ordering your priorities.
Now the second part of this is making adjustments to your time and focusing on long-term goals.
Focus on Your Lifetime Goals
What you want to do is to figure out the lifetime vision for your marriage as husband and wife and how focusing on each other’s needs can benefit your marriage.
This is sort of similar to an exercise that time management experts have come up with in the areas of business. But this will also work in your personal life. In fact, one of these exercises helps you to learn how to get control of your time and your life.
So basically, they talk about if you were to live for a longer period of time, say five or 10 years what would you most want to accomplish before you were to pass away? Write down some ideas.
Then you would do a shorter period of time; maybe 1-3 years. What would you want to accomplish in that time period?
What if you were told you only had six months to live? What would you want to accomplish?
Okay, so now you should have come up with a list of several ideas. Next, you’re supposed to pick out the top three and then narrow it down to one major one.
When you have looked at the list of needs that your spouse has identified, what are your lifetime goals when it comes to helping your spouse feel fulfilled in your marriage together?
You want to come up with long-term lifetime goals.
Break Those Down to Yearly Goals
The next step is to break it down to a yearly goal.
What would you hope to accomplish this year in improving your ability, actions, and time spent on helping your husband or wife feel fulfilled by meeting their basic needs?
Come up with a plan for two or three goals for the year that will entail meeting your spouse’s needs.
Break Yearly Goals Into Quarterly Goals
Then break it down further into quarterly goals.
So what you’ll have is lifetime, yearly, and quarterly goals. These are long-term goals for this aspect of improving your marriage.
On the quarterly, you may have identified the top three yearly goals and you may just want to focus on one of those during the quarter.
As you think about that yearly goal, it’s a good idea to have maybe four steps to make that goal come about. Then you would want to focus on one of those steps each quarter.
But let’s say you only have two steps. In that case, you would have two quarters focusing primarily on one of those.
I know this is a little bit vague, but the idea is that you have a lifetime goal and a yearly goal, and you want to break it down to a quarterly goal.
I suggest that you have one to three goals to focus on for your marriage for this quarter.
Basically, what you’re trying to accomplish is making adjustments in your marriage to improve your focus on meeting your spouse’s needs.
If you just get the list, and you just get the understanding but don’t pursue improvement, then you don’t have the greatest benefit that you could have if each of you were to focus on meeting your spouse’s needs in a greater way.
In order to do that, you have to deal with time.
Benjamin Franklin said that time is what life is made of. Someone else said what you cannot put into time you cannot put into your life. If your life is already full, and your time is already claimed, which probably is in a lot of areas, in order to improve your marriage, you can not change.
You’re going to have to put in some time, so you’re going to have to adjust your time to focus on your goals for your marriage. That may mean that you would have to cut something out.
Again it is a matter of priorities.
What is most important to you? How important is your marriage? In order to work on improving your marriage, you’re going to have to cut something out. You have to figure out where and when you are going to do certain projects or actions.
I hope this has been helpful to you as you are focusing on your marriage. If you already have a great marriage, may it be an even greater delight for you. If you’ve had some challenges in your marriage. I pray that this aspect of your marriage will revolutionize your life.
If you’re interested in the rest of this series (so far) or other posts about marriage click here. The link will take you to my blog where you will find the other posts.
Hello, everyone. Welcome. Again today I’m talking about marriage. In particular, today’s post is about reordering your priorities.
I have been talking about the general topic of the importance of meeting each other’s needs in marriage.
Now we’ve come to the fourth step of that process, so I’m talking about satisfying adjustments by reordering your priorities.
What does that mean?
Well, you’ve come to the point where you realize that you needed to make some changes and hopefully you and your spouse have taken those steps as described in previous posts.
So now I’m going to tell you how to get more satisfaction and feel like you’re making progress in your marriage. The way to do that is by making adjustments to balance your time and focus and reordering your priorities.
You Discovered the Need for Change
In order to do that, we need to reorder our priorities. You discovered the need for change when you went through the process of listing and ranking your 10 or 11 (depending on if you added a category to the premade list) by ranking your list of felt needs according to the order of importance to you and then your spouse did the same. You most likely discovered something when you discussed those lists.
That’s when you discovered the need for change. You reviewed your lists. You discussed your lists.
Those interactions helped you to understand where your spouse was coming from. It gave you recognition of the need for change if you had not previously been doing as good a job as you needed to in meeting your spouse’s needs.
You Have to Commit to Change
But more than just recognizing the need for change, you also have to commit to change.
There’s a scripture verse that talks about a man who looked in the mirror and then walked away, forgetting what he looked like. (James 1:23) When he was looking in the mirror, he saw what he looked like, but after he walked away, he forgot. But the mirror actually accurately reflected what he looked like.
A more general application of that is not focusing upon physical appearance, but focusing on recognizing what manner of person you are when it comes to meeting each other’s needs in marriage.
You have discovered where you may have fallen short in certain areas and now you’re going to commit to making a change in those areas.
So you have to commit to change. Otherwise, things will just go on like they have always gone on. Your commitment will make a difference in that area.
Clarify By Writing Your Priorities and Plans
Then you can clarify things in your mind by writing down your priorities and plans. Statistics from business coaches tell us that people in business are so much more likely to accomplish their goals when they write them down.
Also when you go through the process of writing down your list of priorities, your mind is at work. Since you will be inserting a new priority, you’re going to have to figure out where it goes now.
Many Christians have their general priorities set up this way and I think it is in the correct order: Our first priority is our relationship with God. close behind that is our relationship with our spouse. Thirdly would be the relationship with our children and then finally, it would come into our own lives and our business dealings and our entrepreneurial pursuits.
Reordering when Necessary
You may have already had that order of priorities. More than likely, however, if you are working on daily goals, you’ll see the need for reordering your list of priorities. Your family may even be excluded from your current list. So here’s your opportunity to change by making an adjustment to focus on doing a better job of meeting the needs of your husband or wife. That will involve reordering your priorities.
I hope this has been helpful to you. If you’d like more tips like this just click here. It will take you to the main page containing all the marriage blogs, including the ones in this series.
The benefits of pulling this off, that is pulling off the idea of taking turns and focusing on each other’s needs and your marriage.
Welcome, everyone. Randy Carney here, talking about marriage again.
I have been talking about the third step toward achieving the goal of meeting each other’s needs better than we have in the past.
In the first step, you and your spouse made a list of your felt needs and ranked them in the order of importance to you. Then you traded lists.
In the second step, you learned how to use that information to be able to communicate better with each other.
Now in this third step, I am telling you about taking turns focusing on each other’s needs.
Of course, you can read each other’s lists as a daily thing.
In talking about why taking turns is helpful, I talk about doing this on a daily basis. and then the benefit of pulling this off.
You Both Will Be Happier
The first of the benefits is you will both be happier.
The reason why you will be happier is that if your spouse does uncover a need that had not been met well in the past, there’s a renewed focus on that. Then you will be happier because your needs will be met.
You both will be happier because you know you are both doing something to contribute toward strengthening your marriage. You will have the effort of both husband and wife. As you are doing this, there will be no more drifting. There will be more purpose to your actions. Developing a plan for improvement in the area of your marriage is taking shape.
Beyond that, you will have these many little successes along the way, and that brings encouragement and motivation.
You Will Feel Your Marriage Becoming Stronger
Another one of the benefits is that you will feel your marriage becoming stronger.
Now I know that feeling is subjective, and there are things that are concrete that you can reach out and touch and see. But when you are both involved in certain projects, and you can see these projects taking shape, that’s the objective part.
But then you have the subjective feeling of knowing that you are making some change for the better within your marriage.
I talked about the physical area, and how exercise builds strength. You want to build your marital muscle, so you have the process of doing these projects or focusing on your spouse in the area of meeting his or her needs by doing these projects. Those are daily strengthening exercises.
You’ll feel your marriage becoming stronger just because you know that you are both working toward improving your marriage.
You also will be experiencing change for the better or change at least an attempt.
You may have seen a movie that talked about taking a “love dare.” It was 40 days of projects that one partner in the marriage was involved. As these 40 days went along, he found that he was stretching himself. His wife saw that he was changing. Of course, there’s a happy ending.
This Can Have Benefits In Your Business
Another benefit of pulling this off is that it can also help you in your business. If either of you works you know what stress there can be in the area of your business.
If there’s additional stress outside of the business, like stress in the home, that just makes work so much worse.
But if you have less stress at home that brings less stress in your life.
Many business owners have become aware of the need for work-life balance. You could say work-family balance or work-marriage balance. If you can improve the marital aspect of your life, then there is less stress. Also, it gives you a new layer of support. Some people can face almost anything if they have family support.
Sometimes people go through failed businesses but when they have family support, they make it through in life. That’s a blessing for them to be able to do that.
As you strengthen your marriage and family, the less stress you have and the more emotional support you will have.
Clay Clark is a well-known business coach, and he talks about your six goals each beginning with “F.” He talks about having daily goals in the areas of faith, family, friendships, fitness, finances, and fun. As you see, the aspect of the family is so important for those that are involved in any type of business.
You don’t have to be an entrepreneur for this to work, either. If you’re an employee, you know what stresses there are too. But if you have the support of your husband or wife, it makes life so much better, and it makes it better for you when you go to work.
So these are some of the benefits of pulling this off. You will both be happier. You will feel your marriage becoming stronger. This will have value outside of the marriage.
Iope this has been helpful to you. If you would like more tips like these just click here to be taken to several more posts about marriage, including this whole series up to now.
These daily projects can be actions, or they can be plans. So that’s good. It gives you some choices. You want to be working on your marriage daily. If nothing else, you can just make it a point to daily read over your spouse’s list that he or she gave you.
But this is about the value of daily projects. These projects can be actions or they can be plans.
In thinking about actions, then obviously, these are short-term things that you’ll be dealing with. However, it may be that some of your projects may involve some more long-range activity.
For example, you may decide to take your husband or wife on a trip and it will not be today. Obviously, then, it’s going to be at some time in the future. It’s going to take some planning to do that. So those could be some plans that can be part of your daily project. That would definitely go toward focusing on meeting each other’s needs.
A Payoff to Your Daily Projects
Secondly, you’ll realize that there will be a payoff for working on things you are less interested in as you come up with some of these daily plans.
In the past, you may have not done some of these things, because they weren’t as interesting to you. They did not meet your needs, but they do meet the needs of your husband or wife.
You want to come up with some daily projects that will help you to be focusing on your spouse’s needs.
In the past, you did not do some of these things. Because if you had, then your husband or wife would have had their needs in that area met and it wouldn’t have been a surprise to you.
Usually, when we rate and compare these lists, we find things that are some things that we can work on that would be beneficial to our spouse.
Having a daily project is no different in that regard. In the past, you may not have met those needs as well. But now, even the attempt will be something that your husband or wife will probably be grateful for.
Some of the payoffs may be that you find something new for you to be interested in.
George and Jenny are great examples. George decided that he was going to watch some romantic movies with Jenny. He wasn’t really interested in that prospect at the beginning of it, but after a while, he found out he really did like some of those movies too, even if he did not want to admit it.
So you may also find some new interests when you do this.
If you learned that it was very important to your spouse to have recreational companionship, and you had not engaged in certain types of recreation in the past, you may even find a recreational activity that you have not done in the past that you enjoy now.
You’ll Have an Action Plan
Another value of doing daily projects is that it gives you an action plan.
Someone once said, “No one plans to fail, there are only those that fail to plan.” Those quotes are usually put forth in a business context or in some other kind of working context, but they can certainly apply to our marriages too.
We can be planning on things that will help us to focus on meeting our spouse’s needs. It may have been that previously we have had no plan. Now, you have a basis for making a plan.
It may be that you will even write down some of these plans because some of your long-term goals will not be done today. Maybe you will write them down on the calendar or write them down as ideas for future projects for yourself.
Then there will be a basis for having a plan and that is very motivating, very helpful. Whereas in the past, you might have been floundering around a little bit, not in every case, but in certain areas of your marriage.
You can see the value of these daily projects. They can be actions or they can be plans, and there will be payoffs for working on these things. It also helps to know that you know how to come up with a plan, which you may not have done much in the past.
I hope this has been helpful to you. For the rest of the posts in this series, as well as other marriage tips, be sure to check out my blog by clicking here.
Why taking turns focusing on each other’s needs makes sense.
Hello everyone. Today I’m talking about marriage again. Particularly, I’m talking about seven steps that will help you meet each other’s needs in your marriage.
The first step involved making a list and ranking the list of each other’s felt needs.
The second step was using that information to gain a better understanding of each other.
This third step involves you deciding to take turns focusing on meeting each other’s needs and why it makes sense to do that.
You Will Both Be Invested
Well, first of all, you both will be invested in the project. You’ll be sharing the load so it won’t just be one of you.
Perhaps in the past one of you has invested more in your marriage than the other person. But now at this point, you have a joint project. Although you’re not doing the same thing because your needs are different.
Well, they’re probably different. If your number one need is the same thing and you both are focused upon that for each other, then that’s a great thing. But more than likely you had some revelations, maybe even some surprises when when you went through your list-building process.
This is going to be a joint project and you will both be invested in it. It won’t be just one of you working hard at meeting the other person’s needs. It will be fair.
Maybe in the past to have felt like some things were not there, but this is an immediate chance for you to begin a new to start meeting each other’s needs.
You’ll Be Making Up for Past Missed Opportunities
Secondly, you will begin making up for past missed opportunities. Maybe in the past, you have neglected your spouse’s needs, or maybe your spouse has neglected your needs.
This is a new day!
Taking turns focusing on each other’s needs gives you a chance to make up for the past and stop pretending.
Maybe in the past, it was not intentional that you weren’t meeting one or the other’s needs and it was just that you really didn’t know and you had not communicated.
But now that you know, you have new opportunities to make up for past missed opportunities. It is intentional and it’s time for a new day in your marriage.
You Will Start Seeing Results Quickly
Once you start doing this, you will see results very quickly because you’re armed with new information.
You’re both invested in the project.
You both know what the other ones trying to accomplish.
You can communicate with each other.
If they do a good job, you can thank them so much for it.
If your mate wants to know what he or she could do to help you, then you also have an opportunity to communicate with each other.
You will start seeing results very quickly because you both are involved in this new project and the importance of that will motivate you.
This will help you to be ready because you see immediate changes.
You might be thinking, “Oh, this will be a long drawn-out process. It will take forever for us to get back on track and our marriage.”
There might be some areas where you still need to get on track and other areas where this will move faster because you are both invested. You will start seeing some change and some improvement very quickly, and when you see that quick change and improvement, it will motivate you to try some of the other things.
Some of the other things may not be as easy as some of the others. Some things may take longer. Some of the things might be that one or the other of you has broken trust in your marriage and might take longer for that trust to rebuild.
On the other hand, if you’re both taking this very seriously, and you start feeling some of the needs that formerly were not met being met within your life, you will enjoy that change. You will be motivated, helpful, and ready to start the next phase and some of the next steps toward meeting each other’s needs.
I hope this has been helpful to you. If you would like more tips like these just click here to be taken to other posts about marriage.
I also have two books on marriage currently available on Amazon. They’re the first two in a series called “The Loving Way to A Successful Marriage” with LOVING being an acronym.
The first one is “21 Ways the Principle of Leaving Will Benefit Your Marriage.” The L in loving stands for leaving. Now it’s not talking about leaving in the sense of divorce, although that could be the last resort that might have to happen in certain instances, this is talking about leaving your past and your baggage behind. In this case, leaving some of the new habits that you developed after you got married and perhaps need to change.
The second book is “From Mountains to Molehills: Overcoming and Celebrating Your Differences in Marriage.” So, the “O” in LOVING would be overcoming.
There are two more books that are in the development stage. One is called “Valuing Your Spouse-The Most Important Attitude You Can Have in Your Marriage”, which will take care of the “V”.
The next one I am working on is “Intimacy”, which will be the”I” in LOVING. I will have a book on that coming out.
Then these blog posts are the basis for the next book in the series, which will be about meeting needs.
But the first two books are out and available on Amazon right now, and I would encourage you to go check them out.
Have a wonderful day. Until next time, this is Randy Carney reminding you that you can have a happy and successful marriage!
When your needs are met, and when your spouse’s needs are met, what a wonderful thing it is in your marriage. Even though you’ll have ups and downs, you’ll have a thrilling and very fulfilling marriage when both of your needs are met.
Now, this doesn’t happen by accident You have to be proactive and cause these things to come about.
As I said, I’m talking about some steps toward meeting each other’s needs. In previous posts, I talked about making a list and then ranking that list in the order of importance.
Two posts back (link above) talked about using that list to the best advantage in your marriage. Use it to enhance your marriage and to make it sparkle.
The post just before this one (link above) talked about recognizing the value of your spouse’s opinion.
You may find that you have a certain need way up on your list and he or she may have it way down towards the bottom on his or her list. That doesn’t mean that one is better than the other. Not at all.
When you recognize and value each other’s opinions, it gives you an opportunity to have some discussions that you may not have had previously.
Once you’ve recognized the value of each other’s opinions, work toward meeting your spouse’s greatest needs. If there have been areas and things that you have neglected, you have a new emphasis on what you want to try to do in your marriage in order to meet your spouse’s needs.
Likewise, your spouse will do the same for you.
Keeping Things Fresh
There is another way to use those lists, and that is to review them from time to time.
One way to remind yourself to review your spouse’s list is to put it in your Bible, a book that you’re reading, or somewhere else where you will see that often. Then and you will review your spouse’s interpretation of what are his or her most important needs in his or her life.
You’ll be reviewing it when you do that, but you should also review this by going through the process again at different stages in your marriage.
So you reviewed these needs again, but you also go through the process of the ranking again.
The reason for doing that is that life just changes.
Life Stages Related to Children
Let’s think about some life stages that are related to children.
If you’re in the before-children stage, that is a good time to make your list and do the rankings and trade the list. The goal is to work toward meeting each other’s needs.
It may be that you and your spouse do not have children. Well, most people your age probably will have children during that life stage. This is a good time for you to, again, redo your list to see if anything has changed. it may not change as much for those without children, as it would for those who have children.
Then there comes what might be called the empty nest stage of life. That’s another change. It is a time when life has changed so much that your ranking of how you feel about those felt needs may have changed.
Your spouse needs to know that. If you have a new number one need, your spouse needs to know that. Your spouse needs to know you’ve changed your mind about what’s important.
Another life stage will be what we might call retirement or I refer to it as the later ministry stage within our life. The circumstances have changed.
Those are four different times that would be a good time to review your lists about felt needs.
If you haven’t done your list yet, go back to the previous blog posts. I talked about making a list, ranking it, sharing it with your spouse, and how to use the information you learn.
Life Stages Related to Finances, Careers, or Jobs
There are other life changes that are not related to children, but related to finances, careers, or jobs.
It may be that one time when you filled out your list, your finances were very low, so financial security may have been very high on one or the other of your lists. However, if you are comfortable now, that may not be quite as high on the list.
You may have gotten to the point where you have financial peace. Maybe one or both of us have lost jobs. Those events would probably make a difference in that area of your ranking. I would urge you to go through those lists again at that time.
You might have a career change, or a different job within yourcareer category. When you start a different job and have different time demands, it will be very important for you to consider how you’re going to work through these time demands and how your spouse feels about it.
If it’s going to demand more of your time, how are you going to work that out where you continue to have good quality time with your husband or wife? Perhaps you will end up having a whole lot more time than you did before. In either case, your needs have likely changed.
These are good times to go through the list again.
Life Changes Related to Maturity or Renewed Focus on Spiritual Growth
Then there are life stages that are related to your own personal maturity; Your own growth or renewed focus on spiritual growth within your life.
When it comes to maturity when you’re very young, your needs or perception of needs may be quite different than it is after the two of you have gone through some storms.
Those storms may not have been caused by either of you, just by life events. But having made it through those storms together, you have grown within your lives and your priorities may end up being different than what they were when you filled out that list in the earlier stage in your life.
You have also may have had a time when you decided the two of you were really going to focus on your marriage. You had a renewed focus your marriage has just become better because of your renewed focus in that area.
After having refocused for a while, it would be a good time to go through the exercise again. Rank those needs in order of importance to you and then you and your husband or wife will trade those lists again. it will give you a means for further discussion, and a basis for how you’re going to focus your life in the next few years because you really want to please your husband or wife.
So you have maturity or you had renewed focus in your marriage.
You may have new spiritual growth. If you did not know the Lord when you first filled out the lists, and then later if you came to Christ, your priorities will probably have changed.
If you’ve had a new stage of spiritual growth and your life and both of you have a new commitment in that area, or if it’s changed for one or the other of you, it would be a good time to go through the process again. Then look at your current status of how you feel about what is important to you in your life.
Try those lists, discuss them if you need to, but then focus on focus on doing what is best for your spouse. Review the list periodically as needed throughout your life.
Well, I hope this has been helpful to you. For more tips on marriage, and to see the other posts in this particular series, click here.
Now, I’m moving on to the second step, where I talk about using the information gained in step one.
Review of Step One
In the first step, you had a list of needs that was developed by marriage counselors and marriage researchers.
Next, you customized those lists by adding your own ideas if you thought there had been some that had been left out.
Then you took those lists and we ranked them in the order of importance to each of you.
After that, you traded the list with your spouse. Doing that gave you some revelations and ideas of things that you may have not considered before.
I want to encourage you to think about meeting each other’s needs.
Beginning Step Two
Now in the second step, I’m talking about using that list to gain a better understanding of one another in dealing with our husbands or wives.
Here I’m going to talk about respecting the value of each other’s opinions.
When it comes to these lists, you may be surprised to find that your number one need is way down on the list of your wife or your husband.
Out of the 1000s of couples that were surveyed this list of 10 or so needs was identified. There were many others that were also important, and that’s why you customized your own lists.
One person’s opinion is not better than the other’s, it’s just different. It’s great if you have been honest about how you feel about these needs in your particular situations.
Respecting the value of each other’s opinions: the wife was just beaming. She said, “My husband really gets me and he listens to me. Sometimes he acts on what he has to say.”
This is important for both parties because it motivates you to do things that can be beneficial to your marriage.
What happens when you respect the value of each other’s opinions?
It Builds You Up
First of all, it builds you up and makes you feel good. When you feel good, you are likely then to want to continue on with a certain project or a certain thing that you are doing. So it makes you feel good, especially when your spouse meets your needs. It also makes you feel good that your spouse, who was previously unaware of how important some things are to you now realizes it.
In this process of identifying how important these things are, they begin to meet your needs.
it also makes you feel good when you start attempting to do a better job of meeting your mate’s needs. At least you know that you’re trying and can show them that that is what you are doing.
So it shows that you’re trying and it makes us feel good.
It Gives You a Basis for Discussion
In addition, it gives you a basis for a discussion. You might not be questioning that is really how your husband or your wife feels. But after comparing lists, you might ask for clarification.
“What is it about this that really triggers you? Really motivates you? How is it that this thing really motivates your need?”
Ladies, be prepared.
Your husband may not be able to articulate some feelings very well. But they might, you never know.
But it does give you a basis for discussion. After a while, you will begin to consider “Well, what is it about this that makes me feel so good, and what is it about that motivates me?”
You get the basis for discussion.
It Gives You Joint Projects
The second thing is it gives you joint projects.
When you are working on things together, it gives you the opportunity to be together.
Some couples may say, “Well, that’s not too good. We just get in an argument when we try to do things together.”
But if you respect each other in how you approach things, how you ask questions and aren’t critical, you can avoid arguing.
I know of a family that bought some chickens. They decided to build a chicken house and the chicken run that would go with it. They didn’t know much about it and started watching videos trying to figure out how to do this project.
Fortunately, they had a friend who was pretty good at building who came over to help them get started. This friend really did a lot of things. He sped up the process quite a bit, but they had done most of the project themselves.
While doing the planning, they would come up with different ideas. The testimony has actually been good for them to be doing this together.
The wife said, “Well, I learned to be careful how I would ask a question if I thought maybe something could be done differently.”
He really listened and they considered the ideas and then came up with the idea.
Working on these lists of meeting each other’s needs is giving you a joint project. It is something that you are doing together.
It Forms the Basis for Change
It shows that you are willing to change and that goes a long way in a marriage. When you’re talking about being willing to change, it’s also about respecting the value of each other’s opinions, especially in the areas of health needs.
There’s a difference between when you want to do something and when you are forced to. If you feel like you are being forced to do something then you are not as likely to be motivated to do that particular thing.
But if it’s something that you really want to do, then you go into it without hesitation and it forms the basis for change. It helps you respect each other’s opinions and to listen, to really listen to each other’s ideas, and consider those ideas.
Beyond that, it gives you the joy of knowing that you are serving each other. It makes you feel good to know that you are serving someone else. It makes you feel good when someone’s serving you and meeting your needs.
I don’t mean that in a selfish way. I just mean that we are fulfilled and of course that makes us feel good.
Respect the value of each other’s opinion.
I hope this has been helpful to you. Be sure to look for the next blog in this series
If you would like some more marriage tips like these click here..
In this post, I’m going to talk about using the information you get from the list-building and ranking process to its best advantage. Utilizing it will help you in your marriage.
After looking at one another’s list, you may say, “Oh, that’s why we had conflict, I didn’t realize the importance that my spouse placed upon that particular need within his or her life.”
You want to realize what it is that causes you to have different perceptions of your needs.
First of all, everyone has differing backgrounds.
I’ll give you an example.
I grew up in a family that enjoyed going camping. When I was young, we went tent camping. Later on, we got a little camping trailer. Then later my parents got even more elaborate trailers and at one point after I had gotten married, a very nice motorhome.
On the other hand, my wife grew up in a family that had never gone camping. So it was an experience for her. To her credit, she was willing to do that a few times. But see the excitement and fun things I remembered were not there for her as they were for me.
I have to admit that some of the camping trips that we had after we got married, had a lot of uncomfortable things happen, which would not help in the future.
So if I felt a need to go camping, or desire, maybe not so much a need, then her desire would not be nearly so great. First of all, she did not have the great memories that I did, and secondly, she had some uncomfortable experiences to look back to.
Now, I’m not saying that she would never go camping again. Although that might be the case. But I realize that her need for that is not nearly as great as my need and her need to perhaps avoid it is much greater than it would be for me because of my optimism and hoping that I can have a joyful experience again.
We did have one or two good camping trips later in our marriage, but I have to admit that most of them have not been as joyful as those two.
That’s an example of the differing backgrounds.
The second area is in our interests. You have different interests. Some of those interests are long-standing interests that you develop early in life. As you followed those interests, you got good at some of the skills that were associated with those interests. You’ve experienced some feelings of success in those areas and that made you feel good, so you continued on.
Some of your interests may have come about more recently.
One of my interests came in the area of construction work. I did not do a lot of it when I was young. I had watched my father and others do some construction work but I mainly was relegated to going and getting things and was not taught very many of the skills that were involved.
Then my wife and I came to a point in our lives, where our income was so sporadic, that we did not think that we would qualify for a loan in order to build a house or even purchase a house that had already been built. We didn’t have a piece of land upon which we could place a house. So I developed an interest in construction.
Also when we had some home repairs earlier in our marriage, our income a lot of times did not make it easy for us to just call a repairman to come out. And so I started learning about things and how they worked and did that out of necessity.
But I also became very interested in how things worked. The electronic things and construction things.
Also, later on in my life, I became interested in computers and programming, I learned a little bit about programming in basic, but there is so much you can do with computers that don’t involve certain types of coding.
So I became very interested in that. My wife is glad for me to learn more about that although sometimes becomes a little expensive when we get some new computer equipment or things like that.
On the other hand, I have been able to monetize those things to a certain extent, and it has certainly turned out well in our lives.
For instance, I have three books that are on Amazon right now. It’s because of my interest in computers and word processing and developing websites and things like that, that I have been able to complete those.
Feelings of Success or Failure
I mentioned in an earlier post that men like feelings of success, and don’t like feelings of failure.
They’re not a married couple, but two counselors worked together and wrote a book. They said that one of the major things that a man did not like in marriage was the feeling of shame. It was not the shame that came from doing something evil, but more like the shame of not doing something well.
So, when we look at the needs that are listed, sometimes those needs are related to things that are related to our successes or failures in life. The things that make us feel good are things that we perceive to be important, and the things that make us feel uncomfortable will be placed lower on our lists.
You have the two lists and have ranked the items on them according to the order of importance to you. Then you have traded that list with your spouse. You might have found some revelations in doing that. You might have found some things there.
As you look at that your mate’s list, you might say, “Oh, that’s why we had some conflicts in the past. Because I didn’t perceive this one thing to be as important as my wife or husband.”
Take your list and discuss it with your spouse. The premade lists that have come from the research on marriage may also cause you to have a discussion about something the two of you have never talked about within your marriage.
I hope this has been helpful to you. If you would like more posts like this, you can click here and it will take you to my marriage blogs.