Some days I would like to soar off without a care in the world
I know plenty of men that will say their family prevents them from taking great adventures each day. But what if I told you the issue may be stubbornness and not obstacles? Let me explain. Today in The Love Dare I read that many marriages dissolve not because of the big things, but little arguments like loading the dishwasher or painting a room a certain color. In a post I wrote almost 6 months ago, ‘Does Stubbornness Reign?‘, I address how this looks in my relationship with Jess, but today I accept the challenge of tearing apart my own stubbornness towards myself.
Let’s break this down. In a relationship, there are typically two opinions. No, not a right and wrong one, but one that is hers and one that is yours. Speaking introspectively, I also think there are two, if not more, opinions in any given decision. As I navigate my PTSD, my counselor advises me that there is an easy way to determine what the next right decision should be. Simply ask yourself, “What action will line up with my core values?” Yes, this is making an assumption that we know what our core values are. That is a great place to start.
An interesting challenge for sure
The challenge for today is to find something you and your spouse argue about and intentionally give them their way regardless of your opinion or stubbornness. This challenge for me required a bunch of self-talk. My biggest concern is that I would give in to my own desire and not make the right choice. But I think that is the point of the whole exercise. The argument itself is the problem, not the decision.
With this challenge, I made a slight modification. When it came time to make a decision, I only had one question to ask, “Which decision is closest to my core values?” Asking myself this question eliminates the decision for me on which direction is the best. There is no argument. Most of the time, one decision aligned more with my core values than another.
The problems start after the resolution, not while fighting stubbornness
I know we aren’t all the same, but I hope you can relate. During this day’s challenge, the discovery was not that I am stubborn or selfish, but that I am not comfortable living with the decisions I make. Yes, even if I successfully curb my stubbornness and stick to my one-question rule. Choosing the next TV show to watch didn’t bring my core values into question, but after choosing a show, I punish myself for making that choice. As if I made the other choice the conversation would be different.
I went back and read the chapter again. It says that when we curb our stubbornness we are making a choice to put our spouse’s desire a priority. It doesn’t say we do this and then changes our mind, but we do this to create a habit of putting our spouse first. We can’t win an argument because no matter what, someone loses. If the loser is someone you love, then who is the real loser. And if the loser is the person you share your skin with, then there is no point in arguing. Going forward that is my mantra. I will make a decision based on my core value and then; let it go!
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