Taming the creature of habit…

This morning…

I forgot my work phone at home.
You see, last night I had come home and, instead of doing what I normally do–empty my pockets on the counter next to the coffee pot near all the power connectors for charging stuff–I just walked into the bedroom and just shucked my jeans on the floor and dressed in my grubbies to do some irrigation system reconstruction (you should have seen the leak, it was spectacular).

irrigation leak So this morning, I woke up at 530am, showered quickly, grabbed my pants with all my keys and wallet and personal cell in the pockets, dressed, kissed my sleeping wife, grabbed a banana, and ran out the door. Because I had felt the added weight of the keys and wallet and personal phone, I assumed my Blackberry was there as well. Two hours later… no phone.  Ugh…
As I sit here, I note that I made two mistakes, firstly, I assumed that everything was there. Secondly, I dropped the ball by not performing a quick pocket pat-down before running out of the house.

So thinking about all this inspired me to ask you these questions… After X number of years of marriage, are you operating in habit mode?  Have you stopped to check and see if you’ve really been doing what you need to or, are you assuming everything’s okay because it feels comfortable from your perspective?
In business, you learned years ago that if you aren’t proactive in monitoring your performance by your customers’ eyes, you could easily lose that customer. When’s the last time you evaluated your performance in your marriage from the perspective of your wife’s eyes?
Are there actions that are missing, leaks that could repaired, words left unsaid?

It’s a simple question–all I can say is just do it…
In a time when you are relaxing, turn the TV off and ask her:

“Honey, in respect to our relationship, what things do I need to improve on?”

Then shut up.  Do not try to explain yourself in reference to anything she mentions.  You are requesting an honest critique, not an opportunity to make excuses.
She may say some things that will shock you, other points that will make you happy, and stuff that you can remedy without stretching too hard.
If the list gets long, tell her to hold her thought and quickly get a notepad or, have one ready to go.
Remember, listening is loving.  She will get this.  Immediately.

I do this on a regular basis.  The more often you do it, the shorter the list tends to be…
Make this a habit in your life as you work to be “that guy.”

Now, go have a great day and don’t forget to call her just to say I Love You!


One Comment Add yours

  1. Dorothy Mowbray says:

    In case anyone wonders if the author really does all the “stuff” he encourages you to do … he does! He is not perfect, but he is “that guy” for me and our children. And no, he didn’t ask me to write this either.


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