Kate says . . .
It’s that time of year when so many people are resolved to bring about change in their lives for the coming year. I think every one of us has found ourselves doing just this, even if we don’t verbalize it. “I really wish things were different; I really want to change.” I believe we instinctually know that change needs to come from us. That when life is not really turning out the way we thought it would, we are a huge part of that equation. Even if we never admit it to anyone but ourselves -we know it!
Sooo what is it about yourself that you know you need to improve, change, omit or delete from your life? Of course I am thinking on the marriage spectrum here, because all of these things affect your one flesh marriage connection. If you sit and ponder the things you know need to change-they greatly affect your marriage.
Here are a few things I have been pondering that can benefit every wife out there. Though I am not sure there is a wife alive, at a loss for a new year’s change.
Search for ways to keep yourself active. I know what many of your wives are thinking – “I never have a chance to breathe, let alone sit down”. That is not the active I was thinking about. Exercising three times a week or taking a walk each day, whatever you can do to add a little physical activity to your day, is sure to improve how you feel about yourself. If that seems daunting, start small. Don’t make plans to run 3 miles a day, set yourself up for success and that will also add to your feeling good.
What can you do for 20-30 minutes each day or every other? As I have shared, I strive to run 3 times a week and it is such a blessing, even though I loathe it at the same time! 😉 What can you do? You are investing in yourself, which is investing in your marriage!
10 minutes talk time
Think about your day and find 10 minutes each day that you and your hubby can sit down and just chat. This is a great time for the kids to go entertain themselves. Start this habit early and your kids will know what is expected. If they are small, it is a great time for them to be in the high chair, eating a snack. Whatever you need to do to secure that time with your hubby, do it. You will get to share about your day and that will help you to feel like a human. Weather you work out of the home or are home all day with the kids, take 10 minutes to share about your day. Make this a tradition and you will find this time to be precious. We usually do this when Brad gets home from work. After he gives a quick hug to each of our kids, it is our time to talk and decompress from the day. I can’t imagine my day without that time.
Know your hubby’s intimacy levels
We talk about 4 areas of intimacy (Emotional, Spiritual, Intellectual and Physical). Do you know your husband’s needs and wants in these four areas? Perhaps you know some, but getting to know them better would be a blessing to your one flesh journey. Be intentional about doing so.
Emotional: Yes he has emotions and needs this. How does your hubby express his emotions? Men tend to have fewer words for their emotions, but that does not mean they don’t have every emotion we do. Be a student of your hubby and look to understand his emotions and how he wants to share them with you.
Spiritual: Does your hubby like books, bible studies, sermon or books on CD or podcast, worship music? There are many expressions of our walk with Jesus, and no two people are fed in the same way. Be on the lookout for what your hubby likes to draw near to Jesus. Be careful not to nag about his shortcomings in this area. Trust me he knows where he is falling short. Encourage him by having the things around that he likes, pray for him and stay out of God’s way. God cannot work in our hubby’s life, if we are in the way. Pray and encourage.
Intellectual: What are the things that your hubby loves to do in his spare time, the things that he just loves to talk about. Is it sports, history, hunting, music, fixing things or Downton Abbey (just kidding)? Be a student of those things and strive to understand and share those things with him. Does that mean you have to go hunting every time he does? No! But you can learn, understand, encourage and show and interest as well as join him on occasion. It will speak volumes to him about how you value him and the way God created him.
Physical: This may seem like a shoe-in as far as intimacy goes, but while it may seem obvious, for most men-it is much more complex then we realize. Take time this year to better understand your hubby’s sexual preferences.
If your hubby was looking at a menu, would he choose the same thing each time or does he like to try new things each time? This can shed some light on his personality in general as well as in the bedroom-or out of it! 😉 Have you ever asked your hubby what his favorite position is and why? Have you ever asked him how many times a week would be his ideal for sharing sex? Perhaps these questions scare you, but if you are willing to step out in faith, ask and be open yourself-you have the opportunity to grow and know more about each other. Sex or no sex is not the only thing to consider.
What makes you feel good?
What really makes you feel good? No not sexually, goodness is that all you think about? 🙂 What truly brings you joy? Perhaps it is cooking, crafting, exercising, reading, walking outside, taking a bath, shopping, etc.
Find time to do something just for you each week. One of my favorite things to do, when my kids are out of the house, is head to good will and take an hour or two to just sift through the clothes and see if I can find something, new to me, that I love. There is nothing like finding a great outfit at a bargain. I also love reading books, so I try to find time to do that each day if not every other. Sometimes we wives never take time for ourselves, and then we become resentful and in turn want to be selfish.
Take 30 minutes a day for yourself. It will allow you the relax time you need and in turn bless your hubby. If you shared with him that you need that time, I bet he would be more than willing to do whatever he needs to protect that time for you. Sometimes we just need someone to tell us we are not being selfish. You are not!
Draw near to God
Find time to draw near to God as often as you can. Make it a priority in your life. God asks that our relationship with him be above all else and it is so easy for it to fall to last. Think of ways to carve that time out and keep that time. We all know what it is like to be good with that time and also not so good. The closeness and things God is able to teach us when we are available and pliable speak for themselves. It is on my list for 2013 ladies, there is always room to draw closer. So you are not alone.
As you look to 2013, what are things you are resolving to work on and change? Share with the OFM community, we would love to know! We can start a 2013 revolution for marriage!