Does stress build your marriage up, or tear it down?
In his post entitled Embracing the upcycle instead of the downcycle, Seth suggests that how we deal with stress and problems is “the heart of why some people succeed and others don’t.” I agree, and have seen that how a couple deals with stress and problems in their marriage is why some marriages thrive while others fall apart.
Do problems draw you and your spouse together? Is it “us against the world”? Or, do problems set you at each other, blaming or fighting with your bride rather than working together on the issue?
How we react is based on our past, our personality, and a variety of other things – but I believe we have a choice in how we react. If your typical reactions are not helpful, make a point of changing. Talk about what you don’t like in how you react, and how you want to react instead. Ask to be held accountable to that, be fast to admit you were wrong, and seek forgiveness when you slip into old patterns.
Does your bride get defensive when faced with stress or problems? If you have ever gotten angry or accused her in difficult situations, you have contributed to her being defensive. Go out of your way to not do these things, and to show her support, and she may start to change.
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