I have a confession to make….I have a terrible habit of NOT listening to my husband’s advice. I have made vast improvements in this department in the last couple years, but I still have room to grow (don’t we all?!) There are a few relatively minor changes that we all can make in order to let our beloved spouses know that we actually do value their opinions…I’m telling you, it does wonders for the marital relationship when we as wives ask for and actually listen to the advice of our husbands!
Even when you think you know…ask anyway
I am a type A personality and I have a bit of control problem (another confession?!), so asking for advice can be a bit of a humbling act for me. I have a terrible tendency to think, believe, and act like I know just about everything. So, this area has been a huge challenge for me. Making myself ask for advice even when I think I already know the answer or solution has been incredible for my marriage.
Taking this small step forces me into humility. When we are humble we learn and grow, not only in our own journey but in our marriage relationship. My husband is incredibly smart and has world experience that I will never have. Asking for his input in an area that I normally wouldn’t, gives me incite I never would have had and involves him in different areas of my life.
Another bonus to taking this step? It is a huge confidence and ego boost for my husband! Knowing that I value his input enough to ask for his advice in an area that I normally would just forge ahead tells him that his knowledge is desirable. Being involved in even the tiniest decisions helps to build marriage bonds that make the big decisions easier.
Ask with sincerity
If you are going to ask for advice please, for your husband’s sake-ask sincerely and not out of obligation! You know very well when someone is asking you your opinion because they feel they have to. DON’T do this to your husband! As much as asking for advice can be a relationship booster is as much as not asking with sincerity can be a relationship killer.
Bring yourself to a place of humility and recognize that you probably don’t know everything and that he might have some really valuable incite, then ask from a place of true curiosity. If you have to, build up the suspense before you ask to get your mouth in a place of humility. Your tone can be a killer in this area, so going over in your mind the things your husband might bring to the conversation can help you to be more sincere in asking his advice.
By all means though, if you honestly are not interested in his opinion on a certain topic, please do him and your marriage a favor and don’t ask. You will do more by holding off on asking for advice when you don’t want it than asking simply to ask and not caring what the response is.
Stop thinking and listen when he responds
If you are going to seek your husband’s advice, please make sure that you stop your brain from continuing to think of your own ideas when you ask. Please don’t take that the wrong way. I AM NOT TELLING YOU TO NOT HAVE IDEAS OR AN OPINION! I am asking you for the sake of your marriage and the topic at hand to engage in active listening.
Active listening requires you to put the pause button on your own thoughts as you seek to truly listen to what your husband has to say. He will know instantly if you are not actually listening to his advice and it will be a potential source for an argument instead of growth.
When you are able to put the focus on what he is saying and engage him in conversation about his thoughts and ideas you will grow as an individual and as a couple. Your husband needs to know that you value what he has to say and that when you ask for his advice you are listening and not thinking of your own ideas to counter whatever it is he suggested.
Take the advice given
Now its action time! When he has given you a piece of advice or direction in an area please do your best to actually take his advice. Show him that you are not all talk and no follow through. Put his advice into practice and see how his incite adds value.
This does several things:
You grow in your own ability to be humble
You learn that your husband’s input is valuable
You grow in your journey as a wife and individual by trying something new
Your husband’s level of trust in you grows because of your follow through
You give your husband an ego boost as he sees you trust in him and place value in his opinion
Your marriage relationship grows as you both communicate and share
By regularly engaging in these steps I have placed a whole new level of value on the vault of knowledge behind my husband’s handsome face. I have also gained a new level of humility by acknowledging that I don’t know everything!
I am curious…what areas do you normally not ask for advice in? Could you try going to your husband for input just once? Let me know if you do and what happened!