I’m back from Christmas vacation and I have to tell you, it’s been hard to get back into the swing of blogging again. Not that I don’t enjoy it, but currently I feel a bit burned out by it all, since my life at the moment has less margin than I would like for it to have.
In fact, my word for 2016 is “Release,” so I may be releasing some connections or interactions here to a degree over this next year in an effort to deal with this problem. I absolutely HATE doing that, but it is where I find myself in life. I hope you’ll understand. 🙂
Today I want to pick up where we left off unpacking the “Men and Openness” survey results by dealing with the next question on the survey.
Question #3 – What outside sources motivate or have motivated you to be open and share your feelings with your spouse? (I allowed the men to choose all that applied.)
Here’s what they said …
40.68% – Marriage or relationship books I’ve read.
38.98% – My involvement in a small group of some kind that has stirred me to consider my feelings.
37.29% – Conferences, sermons, or other times of teaching.
37.29% – Counseling
8.47% – When I was growing up my family demonstrated and encouraged openness.
The results of this question do not really surprise me. They are probably where I would have ranked based upon my own life. I might have put small group involvement over marriage books, but that’s because it is often in the context of a small group that I work through a particular marriage book.
I, for one, have seen the amazing power of friends opening up about their marriage struggles and discussing the principles of a particular marriage book in light of their own relationships that has chiseled away at my stony heart and myopic perspective. #doesnotgetbetter
I also notice that the top four responses on question number 3 are so very close that it seems they are ALL powerful catalysts of change in men’s marriages—and I would venture to say it is the same for women. 😉
So this leads me to ask you, in particular the men who read this blog, …
[Tweet “How active are you in working through a marriage book with your wife? #getlearning”]
[Tweet “How active are you in going through a small group experience with your wife? #getinvolved”]
[Tweet “Marriage takes work and that work is best done in the presence of godly friends.”]
I’d like to offer some suggestions on marriage and relationship books that I have found especially helpful to me and my husband.
Boundaries in Marriage
This is one of my all-time favorites! I am a big fan of Cloud and Townsend and like their Boundaries book, but feel Boundaries in Marriage is far superior, easier to comprehend, and more practical. Just sayin’!
Here are two suggestions for wives only …
Super Mom Myth
This one is the premier book by our bloggy friend, Becky Kopitzke. 🙂 I’m going to be doing a review and giveaway on this book in two weeks, so I hope you’ll check it out on the 20th. This book covers both marriage and motherhood and is an incredible read, my friends!
Which of the top four sources of support—marriage books, small groups, conferences or counseling—are you currently pursuing?
What books or conferences would you recommend to Messy Marriage’s readers?
If you feel like your marriage needs more than a book or a small group can offer, then consider marriage counseling or life-coaching. Currently, I am all booked-up on my coaching practice, but if you live in my neck-of-the-woods, I could give you some referrals if you contact me. Another great source of referrals can be found at Focus on the Family.
Joining with my friends at Giving Up on Perfect, Wifey Wednesday, A Little R & R Wednesdays, Mondays @ Soul Survival, Coffee and Conversation, Coffee for Your Heart, DanceWithJesusFriday and Wholehearted Wednesday.
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