Are you like Adam & Eve?

Are you like Adam & Eve?

So there you are, having a great time in your life, blessed with many gifts and success. There is beauty, wonder and abundance all around you.

Slowly you begin to take it for granted… you change your appreciation of it all. You forget from Whom you received all that you have. You begin to deviate from the things you were taught.

Then, the evil one senses an opportunity. He is always looking…waiting for his chance. When humans feel ungrateful or powerful that is his best time to strike.

Temptation presents itself.

And the rest, they say, is history.

Except we’re supposed to learn from this classic story. And here is the learning as it relates to your marriage:

Who was most at fault in that story? Adam.

Why? Because he was supposed to be the leader. He had an added responsibility. It was to him that God gave the reprimand. Adam was responsible for both of them… but instead he made it more important to make Eve happy and go along with her plan to have an apple. When he adopted her view and gave in to her wants, they both suffered, and so it is in many marriages today.

It’s also true that what may seem like a good idea in the moment may be disastrous in the long run, and trusting God’s will and plan for you is a good idea, regardless if you can understand it.

The man is supposed to lead, and that means ALWAYS acting in the best interest of the marriage and the family…even if someone doesn’t agree. He won’t always be right, of course, but in the long haul, he will be right much more than not, and he can be trusted to fix it if he did make a mistake. Men have a different, big picture perspective.

Many men today are caught in that same trap – letting go of leadership to make someone else happy. It didn’t work then and doesn’t now either.

“Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, ‘Thou shalt not eat of it’, cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life.”

Genesis 3:17

Top 10 Marriage Tips

Top 10 Marriage Tips
  1. DO make sure your words and actions have a point; that they go toward an outcome you want to create. If your words, actions or thoughts aren’t directly connected to the result you want, think of them as irrelevant.
  2. DO realize “feelings” change and are unreliable for making decisions. Just because you have a feeling doesn’t mean everybody needs to know about it.
  3. DON’T value being independent in your marriage – value becoming ‘intra-dependent’. That means get very good at being part of a TEAM, which is a different skill set than only considering yourself.
  4. DO demonstrate the kind of relationship you want your children to have – they’re watching! You are the role models they will copy. Ask if you’d like their future spouse to treat them like you treat yours.
  5. DO ‘cleave from your family of origin’. Your extended family is secondary now. You can’t be a good, loyal spouse when you can’t give up being a good, loyal child.
  6. DON’T go to friends or your family for advice in your marriage – it is not enough that they support you. They need to support your marriage. And most don’t. “The No. 1 reason people fail in life is because they listen to their friends, family, and neighbors.” Napoleon Hill
  7. DON’T stop dating each other. Make ‘couple time’ a priority. Don’t allow distance to grow. By the way, dates don’t include negative talk about money, kids or problems…remember?
  8. DO take responsibility to control your anger, criticisms and judgmental attitudes. The Golden Rule is a good thing to keep in mind… treat others as you would want to be treated.
  9. DO require an ‘off-limits’ space between kids and parents. Kids shouldn’t have 100% access to parents space, possessions or attention. Children are not supposed to be equal to adults in rank, authority, power or control.
  10. DON’T keep dragging the past into your present. You can’t change the past, and everyone has mis-managed it. Focus only on what you want next, not what happened before.

How To Save My Marriage

How To Save My Marriage

Saving a marriage starts with getting back to basics – The structure of your relationship needs to change. That structure starts with leadership. Often when a marriage is on the rocks it’s due in large part to both spouses in competition for who’s “right” and who’s “in charge”. These competitions spark constant argument and debate, and often end up in divorce court simply because the two people are confused about the roles that tend to work best.

A team always has a leader. It’s the nature of most things to have leadership – someone who is ultimately responsible for the welfare of the group… whether it’s a CEO in a company, the doctor in an operating room, a teacher in a classroom, a general in an army, the alpha dog in the pack, or simply the president of the church social committee, someone is the leader virtually everywhere you look….except in marriages. For some odd reason, there, it seems people get distracted with a weak and ineffective “50-50” leadership (which never works) or often the wife gets control and becomes the de-facto leader because the husband just wants to avoid arguments. If the basic structure of a relationship is off, it makes everything more difficult. Continue Reading

How To Get Along With My Wife

How To Get Along With My Wife

This is the problem of the ages for most men, and of course, there is no easy answer. One thing that could be of help is to consider a perspective change. Society has convinced us that the more like women men are, the better. Be soft, show your emotions, break down if you need to….Rubbish! Women’s attraction strategy to men is based mostly on challenge. That is, after the challenge of getting him into marriage, then how much can she manipulate or control him after that is the new game afoot.

The man who can lovingly and calmly stand his ground, doing what he believes is in the best interest of the marriage without becoming stagnant waiting to get her approval or to see whether she likes it will be better off in the long run. Of course a good leader (and a good husband) must always seek his wife’s thoughts and opinions and understand his wife’s position. But understanding and agreeing are different things. His requirement as leader is that he always decide in favor of the best interest of the marriage or household…

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Marriage Help

Marriage Help

Help for marriage problems can come in many ways. The first step is you have to be receptive to doing things differently. Given that what you’ve been doing hasn’t worked, it would be helpful to have an open mind, and be willing to take feedback that may not initially agree with or be similar to what you know now, or what you’ve been told.

Many people wonder, “will my marriage last?”. With first marriages failing at a staggering 60% rate, clearly the answer to that question is, “probably not” if you create and conduct your marriage like 60% of the other married people do. I think it’s time to look at throwing out a lot of the messages we’ve been given as a society; through movies, magazines and the media. It’s time to face facts and realize that being happy and successful in a committed relationship takes certain skills, understandings and CHOICES that most couples either won’t do or don’t know. Continue Reading

What To Do After Cheating

What To Do After Cheating

“People are always fascinated by infidelity because, in the end – whether we’ve had direct experience or not – there’s part of you that knows there’s absolutely no more piercing betrayal. People are undone by it.” Junot Diaz

Infidelity is rampant in marriages. With disgusting websites devoted to helping married people “hook up” and cheat on each other, everyone looking the other way, and so little social accountability, it’s no wonder couples seek relationship help and marriage help after an affair in huge numbers.

Sometimes people say they are coming for help to repair an infidelity but one of them has a different agenda; make the person who cheated the ” bad guy” so they can feel justified leaving the marriage without trying to fix it. The reality is that most of the time these breaches of trust and vows can be repaired. The single most influential factor is whether the couple knows how to actually forgive and move on. Continue Reading

Secrets To A Happy Marriage

Secrets To A Happy Marriage

The first secret is, there aren’t any secrets. There is dedication to a cause, some good planning, and taking action toward the goal, but no secrets. Perhaps we could say it’s a state of mind more than anything else.

“A successful marriage requires falling in love many times – always with the same person.”  Mignon McLaughlin

That state of mind would be a great way to save your marriage from divorce, wouldn’t it? There aren’t many “marriage training skills” that could produce a better result than a state of mind like that. So what did you do when you fell in love the first time? Did you disagree a lot, fight over every little thing, notice all the things you didn’t like about them and complain about the past? No, probably not. Instead, you were focused on what you liked about them, what the future holds in store and you enjoyed the excitement of getting to know them better. Appreciating who they are and how they think

Admiring their traits. Minimizing their “imperfections”. So to fall in love over and over, you just need to do what you did in the very beginning. Focus on what you love about the other person.  Your actions will change your feelings… but it doesn’t work the other way around. Being “in love” is a state you can create all on your own.

 

Fix Money Problems

Fix Money Problems

There is only one real money problem most people have: failure to plan ahead so they can at lease live beneath their means, or at best, allow time to work with them to grow wealth or financial stability. Interestingly, this problem exists even though there are enormous amounts of high-quality free information, web sites, TV shows that detail the relatively simple steps to financial security. What is missing is:

  1. A frank, in-depth discussion before the marriage so everyone’s goals, needs and issues are on the table, known and understood, then…
  2. A specific plan to accomplish the mutual objectives. And that plan will depend on the maturity to chase the very important goal of financial stability – the ability to do more saving than spending – more focus on the end goal of financial freedom and security.

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Forgiveness

Forgiveness

Forgiving others who hurt us as we would like and expect them to forgive us if we had hurt them is the foundational basis of Christian faith. However most people in marriages are quite bad at doing that. Unforgiven issues tend to keep going and get worse. Over time, people spend an awful lot of energy and emotion defending and protecting the position they keep, instead of truly forgiving in letting it go. Of course, forgiving does NOT mean “forgetting it”; forgetting it is not a requirement. But letting go of the emotional charge about it, and the emotional connection to it that keeps you stuck in the past, or stuck in hurt feelings and resentment is. It’s a requirement. There is no high-quality successful relationship that can survive without letting go of past hurts and mistakes.
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Save A Marriage When She/He Wants Out

Save A Marriage When She/He Wants Out

By the time someone is saying they want out of a marriage, things are usually pretty bad. But if you’re wondering how to save your marriage, the answer could be as simple as shifting your awareness from what you’re getting and wanting to what you’re giving and contributing. If you want things to change in a difficult situation, boldness is the first thing. Be confident, gutsy, fearless, maybe even a little cheeky… but be about your spouse and meeting his/her needs for a while, just to shift the energy and direction of your relationship. It’s kind of hard to be mad at someone who is being kind, thoughtful and respectful.

“A successful marriage isn’t the union of two perfect people. It’s that of two imperfect people who have learned the value of forgiveness and grace.”
– Darlene Schacht Continue Reading

In-Law Tips

In-Law Tips

Probably the biggest mistake couples make regarding their family of origin, is that when they get married they fail to cleave from their parents – specifically, their MOM. If that sounds familiar, that’s because it’s taken right from the Bible. The first thing you might want to ask yourself is, “why would that specific instruction be given?”. If you believe that the Bible is the guideline or the manual for how to function at your very best as an adult, and how to handle all the many situations you will encounter in your life, you would have to be at least a little curious about why we would be instructed to shift allegiance and primary connection from your original family to the family you are creating through your marriage.

The answer is quite simple. And you have heard it said in many ways.

A house divided against itself cannot stand.

You cannot serve two masters at the same time.

There is only room for one at the top.

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How To Get Along With My Husband

How To Get Along With My Husband

Sadly, it comes as a big surprise to most wives that the thing her husband longs for most in the world, above everything else, is simply that she be content. Pleased, at ease, peaceful, calm. Not in arguments with him over practically everything, not throwing up his past mistakes in his face over and over, not criticizing and micro-managing his every move as if he were an incompetent child…. but that’s the experience of most husbands. And it need not be so.

Many men will say privately that they do not feel appreciated or respected by their wives, and this bothers them a lot. Most wives have a very inaccurate idea of what appreciation and respect look like in the way the relationship goes. To treat your husband in the way he most wants to be treated by you, and speak the language your husband will understand, it’s actually pretty simple. Confirm with your words, actions and physical affection that you like him, you trust his leadership, and he is important to you. What he thinks matters. How he feels is on your radar screen. Undemanding kindness goes a long way. Continue Reading

A Christian Marriage is Different Than a...

A Christian Marriage is Different Than a Regular Marriage

About 85% of people say they have a religious faith of some kind. That gives us a lot in common. But when it comes to folding beliefs of faith into the daily choices and decisions in marriage, it seems people lose sight of the differences and it seems like they are the same. There is no doubt that both types of marriages are perfectly fine, and everyone should be entitled to pick how they want to structure theirs.
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Why Living Together is a Big Mistake

Why Living Together is a Big Mistake

Did you know that living together first is a predictor of divorce?

That may not seem like it makes sense… you try out the situation, get to know each other better… that should make it easier to be married, right? Wrong.

Just like any other relationship, when you first meet someone and start living together, you’re forming and developing all sorts of communication patterns together. You’re working out how you talk to each other, what kinds of subjects are easy to talk about, what subjects are not so easy to talk about, how much you reveal, how much you hide, and that all determines how you problem solve. People don’t get divorced because of how much they agree with each other. They get divorced because they can’t resolve the things they don’t agree about.

Unresolved disagreements can easily turn into arguments and arguments often turn into the kinds of screaming matches and ugliness that do a great deal of damage. So this business of how to problem solve and how you communicate with each other is actually a really big deal.
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Blended Family Tips

Blended Family Tips

You SHOULD:

  1. Treat whatever children are brought in EQUALLY, regardless of with whom they share DNA. Nobody gets special treatment because he or she is the “oldest/youngest/mine/yours…”
  2. Demonstrate you are an adult, married couple FIRST and parents SECOND. See to it that your kids experience you that way. Many new second marriages have significant difficulty because the couple are trying to prove what kind of parents they are instead of stabilizing the household by simply being happily married and having everyone enjoy fitting in to the new structure. The couple enjoys the structure of the marriage, co-parenting and being the adults, and the children can begin to enjoy the stability marriage brings to a home, the balance of male and female input and guidance, and the structure of adults being in charge of children.
  3. The new couple should discipline the children based on what either one sees in the moment, and what the particular child needs to learn in the moment they need to learn it. Both adults should be 100% free to reprimand, give consequences and punishments to any child who needs it, and be 100% backed up by the other (especially in front of the kids).

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WHY Is This a Photo of a Great Mom?

WHY Is This a Photo of a Great Mom?

Maybe you thought this was the picture of a care-free, happy kid. Maybe you observed that the husband was enjoying some loving attention from his wife, so he was relaxed and in good spirits. And perhaps you were perceptive enough to see that the woman’s attention was very much on her husband, and that everyone around her seemed quite content and calm. It certainly looks like all of that would be true.

And that is why this is a picture of a great mom.

When you have children, whether they are yours biologically, or yours through marriage, parents have one thing to give their children that is by far the most important thing. And there’s nothing else that is as important as that one thing for the children’s future happiness and success in life. That thing is not love, it is not sympathy, it is not friendship, and it’s certainly not a long list of material things. And while things like a college education or financial assistance starting a career, or creating opportunities for travel are all very nice and have their place, still, there is one thing that is even more influential on how their adult life will turn out.
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Interview With Julie Nise

Interview With Julie Nise

Question 1. A number of our women subscribers find difficulty in attracting the right man especially women in their 40s and above. The common complaint we hear from women is that men in their age group seem to be more interested in younger women and the men that seem to be interested in them aren’t interesting to these women. What advice do you have for women who are frustrated with their dating experience and have become skeptical of finding Mr. Right?

I think the first issue in attracting the right man for women in their 40s and above has to do with being the right woman. If you are truly emotionally open and available and have the skills to be in a serious relationship then you will probably be attracting the right kind of guy. The old adage that “like attracts like” is true. On the other hand, if you’re the type of woman who is just looking for a human ATM machine or someone to fix all your problems for you or an audience for all your drama and acting out, then you are not ready for an emotionally mature relationship..
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