Marriage Coach: What I Learned on My Recent Vacation (Part 2)

Freed_Blog_Vacation_Part 2_smLast week, I began to discuss a few things I learned on my recent vacation to Mont Tremblant, Quebec with my husband. Taking a vacation with your spouse is a great way to reconnect and have some fun together! But it also allows you time to observe and reflect on your marriage and your relationship in general.

Although I’m a marriage coach, I’m always learning something new and different about relationships. And even when things are going great, there’s bound to be something to pick up along the way that may come in handy in the future. With that in mind, here are the last of my vacation thoughts and experiences.

Accept influence. My husband and I are pretty extreme opposites. I’m a worrier and he’s not. And when it comes to how often we need to fill up on gas, it can be an issue. I like to fill up on gas as soon as the tank is less than ¼ full, whereas my husband is perfectly okay driving until the gas gauge goes below empty. He always assures me that we can still go a few more miles.

So when I noticed the gas fall below that quarter line, I alerted my husband. Instead of telling me we could go farther, he asked me to be on the lookout for the next gas station and he would fill up.

Obviously he didn’t want to stress me out or cause an issue, but I noticed how good he was at simply accepting influence. I appreciated him for accepting my advice and not challenging me. By doing this, I could easily relax and stop worrying about getting stranded on the highway!

Even if you think your way might be better, sometimes just accepting influence from one another – without questions or causing an argument – can go a long way in avoiding many unnecessary conflicts.

Teamwork. My husband and I have figured out how to be the perfect team. Since he loves to cook and I don’t mind cleaning, we agreed that he would cook up some gourmet meals right in our suite (yes, we actually brought along our own kosher pots and pans!), and I’d do the dishes. It was superb! I relaxed while he worked hard in the kitchen preparing delicious dishes, and then he got to relax while I cleaned up after we ate.

Teamwork is crucial for a happy balance in your marriage. Every couple should find what works for them when it comes to household duties and chores – regardless of the presumed gender role – and agree on responsibilities accordingly. The key for success is that each spouse has to keep their part of the deal and work as a team to get things done! After all, you are a team for life!

Being happy for your partner. Since my husband is an avid skier, it’s important for him to ski during the winter season because he truly enjoys it. I, on the other hand, have tried skiing, but I can’t really seem to get over my fear of falling and breaking bones.

So, were we just going on the skiing trip for him? Was I “sacrificing” my vacation? Not at all!

Just because I don’t enjoy skiing as much as my husband doesn’t mean I couldn’t have fun on my own. He would ski for a couple of hours each day while I kept myself busy with things I enjoyed. Then, when we met up after our individual activities, we were both happy!

It’s important to enjoy your partner’s happiness and do things that make your partner happy. I know my husband appreciated his time skiing when he told me all about it, grinning ear-to-ear. And I was happy because he was happy!

Freed_Enter to Win a Free Book copyI also learned that it’s okay to do some things apart even when you are on vacation. It actually serves to heighten the togetherness when you meet up once again! So go ahead be happy for your spouse when they are happy – and take the time to do things that make you happy, too! One smile brings another smile, and before you know it, there will be an endless chain.

The next time you get to take a vacation with your spouse, take the time not only to enjoy yourself, but also to reflect on your marriage and see if there’s anything you can learn about your spouse and your relationship that you didn’t realize before.

Rooting for you!

Sara Freed

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