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Did you get out Black Friday shopping? I did. In fact, I was out all night from Thursday at 10:30 pm to Friday morning at 8:00 am (now you know for sure I’m crazy). Well, think what you may, but I got some really good deals (like McAfee software and Quickbooks, valued at over $ 150, for FREE).
However, in order to get those deals, I needed a plan. In fact, before I went out, I knew which stores I was going to and when I needed to be in line for the next store opening. Walmart to Target to HG Gregg’s to Best Buy to Kohl’s to Kmart to Staples . If I got hung up at one store, I would miss the opening (and deals) at another store.
Well, your marriage is like that. In order for you reach the mountaintop in your relationship, there are four steps (or “stores” if you like) you need to navigate. And, if you get hung up at one step, you miss the “deal” of reaching the mountaintop.
First, you need to figure out Who You Are individually and together. The Personality and Love Language tests (see previous blogs) help you figure that out. Many problems in marriage start right here. If you don’t understand or find solutions to these issues, you forever keep butting heads.
Second, you need to figure out Your Vision for Your Marriage. It is fascinating (and sad) how many couples have absolutely no idea of what they want to accomplish in their marriage. This step is vital because of one simple fact: How can your spouse become the man or woman of your dreams if you do not know what that looks like? Things like yearly goals and the 5 & 10 list (see previous blog) help you figure out what you truly are expecting from your spouse.
Third, you need to Gain the Skills Necessary to Accomplish that Vision. It one thing to know where you want to get to — it’s quite another to be able to get there. Many couples struggle at this point in areas like sufficient time together, adequate communication, growing in emotional intimacy, responding well to your spouse’s desires, understanding love and respect, meeting sexual desires, budgeting, trust, etc. And, unfortunately, it only takes one or two of these issues to be out of whack for a marriage to really suffer (I know from first-hand experience).
Finally, a couple needs to put into effect an Action Plan to Continue the Progress. In this step, a couple develops a chart of the top 10 items they each commit to accomplish to help them stay at the mountaintop.
Does it sound like a lot to you? Well, really, it’s not. This past spring, I counseled a couple still dealing with an affair that took place three years ago. They were in a very bad place. I saw them for only 30 hours(15 sessions). To their credit, they methodically worked through each of these four steps. In the end, they felt ready to be released from counseling. Just last week, I received an e-mail from the wife saying how well they were doing.
Now, talk about a Black Friday Deal. You see, for about the price some people spend shopping on Black Friday, this couple got a new marriage, a renewed vision for the rest of their lives, and a real home for their kids to grow up in. Not only that, but think about how their legacy will forever change because they took the steps to get marriage help. Now, my friends, THAT is one deal you won’t find on Black Friday!
If you’d like to sign up for one of these deals, e-mail me (firstname.lastname@example.org) or call me at 717-802-6604. I’ve love to help you experience the joy of a mountaintop marriage.
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