Does Your Need for Neatness Help or Hinder Your Marriage?
Ok, now I can feel all the “neat freaks” getting restless. Bear with me….
Let’s take a look at the real issue here.
Do you feel there is a right way and a wrong way to put away and store things?
Do you feel there is a better way to manage everyday life at home?
The first one is about control. The second is about caring.
If you wish your spouse would change their habits (to fit your lifestyle), it has nothing to do with neatness. It has everything to do with you.
But if your true wish is to make life better for both you and your spouse – without overhauling your spouse’s habits – then neatness might be a useful ally.
Neatness means clean or organized; showing care in execution.
- It’s clean (enough) if the person who plans to use it is happy with it.
- It’s organized (enough) if the person who needs it can quickly and easily find it.
Now maybe you feel the need to clean something so you feel better. Maybe you need to organize a closet, the kitchen, or garage to make you feel more in control. That’s perfectly fine. Have at it. Go to town. Make yourself happy.
Just remember, you are doing it for yourself, not your spouse. It’s your problem, not theirs. It’s to make you feel better, and no one else.
So…. if you are a self-proclaimed neat freak, don’t use your need for neatness as a weapon against your spouse. Use it to help your marriage, not hinder it.
If you are wondering who is the neat freak in our home, it’s me. Thankfully, Lori bears with me when I go on a neatness binge. She knows it’s not about her. I’m doing it to make myself feel better. Then when I’m all done I can go back to being normal again.
A word from Lori…
When we were first dating, my father took Rob to look at my room. I was a 17 year old with a bedroom where you couldn’t see the floor. Rob looked around, and he says that he knew at that moment that I’d never be neat. And he was OK with that. We got married a few years later. Over the last 32 years I’ve gotten somewhat more neat, but it will never be my strength. Rob has always taken the lead in this area. And he has NEVER made me feel like I’ve disappointed him. He’s cheerfully and willingly stepped in to make our environment neat. Now that we live in 282 square feet neatness is especially important! The key is to know your strengths… in marriage sometimes it’s important to let the spouse with the strength take the responsibility… And you just support them. 😉
I’m putting these posts – “A to Z” Values – all under the FAMILY portion of this site. Why? Every one of these Values words will be a blessing to each spouse – but more than that… they’ll benefit your whole family!
Imagine if you are motivated to work on and for your marriage – what kind of impact will that have on your family? On your children? I’m guessing that your children and family will only benefit as they watch the two of you standing together – using your strengths.
This post began as an Instagram challenge for July 2016 – A to Z and a few numbers… ( check out our Instagram account) and grew into a series of Values posts!
The posts in this series can be found on the PAGE – 27 Values to Enrich your Marriage (BTW – If you’re reading this post before the end of July 2016, then the page isn’t complete… I’m still writing! 😉 )