Enjoy harmony in your marriage during the pandemic
Since the lock down started regarding Covid-19, I have been hosting daily Mind Transformation Instagram Live Sessions with various thought leaders on different topics to transform minds and also to provide solutions to businesses, careers, marriages and families. The world is going through a shift right now and everything is getting affected. A lot of couples are currently having conflicts because they had never spent so much time with themselves as they are now, while for some, they decided to take this time to resolve their conflicts and build harmony in their homes.
In one of my Instagram live sessions, I hosted Tara and Fela Durotoye where they shared from their experience, tips on how couples can enjoy happiness and harmony in their marriage.
When you hear about a marriage having challenges or even failing, you often wonder why a union built upon love and mutual understanding would be faced with such. It’s not like a business contract in which various parties are looking to make profit. Neither is it like a committee where everyone is looking to make a point. Marriage is a pledge by two people to love; have and hold each other till death do them part. It is supposed to be the most selfless of all unions so then, why is it that 7 out of 10 marriages are going through the kind of challenges that most times lead to what they call “irreconcilable differences?”
Strong and lasting marriages are built upon the premise of mutual service – both couples staying resolute in their commitment to serving each other. Once couples begin to allow their differences erode this commitment to serve each other, the foundation of their union begins to shake.
The challenge today is that there are marriages where the couples are driven to dominate each other. It is almost like it has become a contest of wills. One party trying to, either lord it over the other person, or prove a point to the other person. A union that is also a competition is a paradox. It contradicts itself and hence it will collapse.
Love can happen at first sight but a successful marriage does not run on automation, it is built. It is the product of commitment and hard work from the two parties involved. Everything . . . I mean every single thing in a marriage is mutual. Every act is mutual. Every consequence is mutual. There is no way you can hurt your spouse without hurting yourself – you just may not feel the pain immediately.
Mutual service is one of the practical steps couples can take when they want to make their house a home. Service by definition is exterior to its giver. Service focused not on the servant but on the serviced. It has a “you first” emphasis. It says, “I defer to you.” And this not a function of whether I am the husband or the wife. When marriage is reduced to role-playing, we know the spark has left and the couples are just “managing” what they have. “Manage” is “I can’t wait to leave home,” while marriage, on the other hand is “I can’t wait to get home.”
When you are serving, your focus is on your spouse. You are saying to them, “I am thinking of you”; “I care about you”; “I’ve got your back.” You can let your defenses down for someone who demonstrates time and again that they have your best interest at heart.
Serving is about paying attention to your spouse. You need to know your spouse’s love language and speak it without shame. If it’s physical touch, then touch them as often as you get the chance. I once had the privilege of dinning with some friends at the home of a mutual friend. And as I have become fond of doing, I just observed the dynamics of the various couples in the room. I noticed something rather heartwarming. There was this couple that each time the wife passed by the husband, she just touches him – a hand on his elbow, a rub on the back. She never missed the contact. And it was the way it happened involuntarily that caught my attention. It wasn’t like she was trying to make an impression. She just touched him. And every time she made the gesture, I looked at the face of the man and I saw his involuntary acceptance of the gesture. In that moment, he lights up and then he’s back to the gist. Even he wasn’t aware of his response. Just watching them, I knew why they jelled.
Ask your spouse what you can do for them, and just do it.
To serve, you’ve got to be intentional. You don’t wish service, you will and work it. You have to be intentional about loving and serving your spouse. You have to make it a goal.
You need to find what works for both of you and also to find a way to stick with it. Whether it is your finances, sex or parenting, you need to address these needs – as a couple – not in conventional terms but in ways that works for both of you.
When it comes to the key needs of men and women, it may not pay to generalize. Your spouse’s needs are specific and they arise from a host of things: their upbringing, their preferences, and their current state. When it comes to meeting your spouse’s needs, you have to be laser focused and not make mindless comparisons. Some people are just clueless. They look to an external script to meet the needs of the spouse. They buy them an expensive car when the spouse would really have preferred more time on the couch with them.
To know your spouse’s needs, pay attention to their body language. Increase your awareness by asking questions: what does my spouse like? What does he/she not like? What makes him/her happy?
Make out time to reflect. Always use the time when your spouse is not around to notice things. Notice the evolution he/she is going through. Notice how the changes in your marriage change him/her.
Both of you saw the best in each other before you became man and wife. Your goal is to make sure you keep bringing out the best in each other. And service, devotion, attention and intentionality are perhaps the key things that will help you achieve that.
Put these tips to use during this lock down, correct the areas you’ve been struggling with and create the marriage and family of your dreams to enjoy harmony.
Join me for my Mind Transformation sessions on Instagram live every day @lanreolusola; each guest and time for the day is announced on my feed and instastories.
Do you need help to work through issues in your marriage? Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.