According to Elizabeth Bernstein’s recent article in the Wall Street Journal, nagging is more common than adultery and potentially as toxic.
If nagging is prevalent in your household, I am sure that one of your goals for the year was to reduce the times you nag your husband about specific action he needed to take.
In fact, we set specific goals around specific, but they aren’t aligned with the individual we are married to. Our goals are outwardly focused like planning a vacation, paying off our bills, going on more dates, or having more sex.
We usually don’t set goals on how we can better treat our spouse, or how we can empower them to be a successful husband or wife. Your spouse, no matter how long you have been married, whether it’s been 1 year, 5 years, or 25 years craves appreciation.
The easiest most productive way to say thank you is by recognition. When there is no recognition it can be challenging for your spouse to respond to your pleas for support, or motivated to make the changes necessary for the betterment of the marriage.
If this is you and you want to continue to empower your marriage, let me ask you “How can you change your action-oriented goals to more personal development goals?
- Plan it! I’ve said in previous blogs, consciously catching your spouse doing something that warms your heart is especially rewarding. It doesn’t have to be elaborate. If you tell him/her you appreciate what they have done as soon as possible will lead to other acts of kindness.
- Pump them Up! – Any chance you get to brag about your spouse at the office, in front of your kids, or your parents, do it. Words are more powerful than any gift. It will leave a trail of positive energy that will have a long-lasting effect.
- Put it in Writing! The creme de la creme is when you cam compose your empowering words in a letter or a card. As we all know people in general tend to live in the past and will focus on their failures and not successes. That is a major reason why nagging can be so destructive in a marriage. It forces the naggee to constantly think about what they are doing wrong. Who wants to live like that. We should really concentrate and live in the moment. A card or a letter will do just that.
In the year 2012, let’s try a new tactic, we might get a different result. Let’s focus on acknowledging the positive results.
By planning it, pumping them up and putting it in writing, our marriages may not only make those action-oriented goals that we nag our spouses about it achievable, but also enjoyable.