In Be Connected With Others I briefly mentioned peer pressure. Today I want to go a bit deeper with that.
The opinions and actions of those around us influence what we think and do – for good and for bad. The more we care about people – or want them to care about us – the more they influence us. The more we respect or admire someone, the more they influence us. This means a few people can have a very powerful influence.
What are you doing to influence others to grow-up in their marriages? What are you doing to urge couples to greater commitment, respect, and sacrifice? What are you doing to foster better sex in marriages?
There are two sides to this: promoting what’s good, and gently looking down on what’s bad. When someone makes an anti-marriage, anti-sex, anti-male, or anti-female joke, don’t laugh! A moment of silence and changing the conversation is a good way to show you don’t agree. When someone runs down marriage, or women, or men, say something to stand up for what they are putting down. Be fast to show the good, and eager to expose the upside. Beyond this, look for ways to mention something wonderful your spouse did for you, or express how much you enjoy being married.
Yes, marriage can be difficult, but focusing on the bad creates a distorted and dishonest view. I’m not suggesting you create a false positive view; simply offer the other side. The folks with an axe to grind tend to speak up, and they need to be countered by those of us who don’t find marriage a horrible experience.
Finally, don’t think this is window dressing: positive peer pressure can bring about huge changes. The TMB message boards are full of stories of men and women who hung around long enough to have their thoughts and actions changed. The awesome power of the boards is the multitude of voices saying positive things about sex and marriage. Your church, or small group, or gathering of friends can be the same, and you can make it happen.
To paraphrase a well-known quote:
All that is necessary for marriages to fail is for happy couples to remain silent.
Great tweet of the week:
Don’t let sex become the last thing on your to-do list. @forbetterorwhat
Links to blog posts that stood out to me this last week:
Featured Post – A must read article I saw this week:
Refine Us postedSix Questions That Will Radically Change Your Marriage ◄ This is excellent! Memorise this and use it often.
Black and Married with Kids
Bad Attitudes are Contagious: How They Impact Your Marriage ◄ Are you friend’s attitudes hurting your marriage?
The Generous Wife
Mostly, We’re Just Afraid ◄ Saw a number of women say this article really helped them – maybe your wife would benefit?
Journey to Surrender
Are You Setting Yourself Up To Fail? ◄ Are you trying to meet needs that are not yours to meet?
11 Most Important Things in a Marriage ◄ Good list. What would you say?
One Flesh Marriage
Marriage Island ◄ You need others!
The Romantic Vineyard
…to Love Honor and Vacuum
Internet Addiction: Is it Wrecking Your Marriage? ◄ Is your WIFE always on-line?