Tuesday, November 12, 2013 – Day Five: Love is Not Rude
Rudeness can be characterized by the way we speak or the way we behave and act. Rudeness causes unpleasantness for others we are around. It shows lack of consideration for the other person. When acting in love, we want to try and intentionally behave in a pleasant manner and avoid things that may be frustrating to the other person. Sometimes these can just be small, minor things that we do that can be irritating or upsetting to our significant other. When changes take place, even the smallest ones, the relationship flourishes.
The Love Dare had a wonderful point: “If you don’t let love motivate you to make some needed changes in your behavior, you will unnecessarily limit the quality and enjoyment level of your relationship. The more respectful and honorable your behavior, the more attractive & romantically appealing your become to your spouse.”
Two main reasons we may be rude are ignorance and self-centeredness. We may have absolutely no idea that our words, behaviors, or actions are upsetting to our significant other. Our we could be completely oblivious to the fact that we may actually have irritating qualities about ourselves that other people don’t find attractive. We may have the mentality that we could in no way be irritating to someone else! Both ways of thinking are flawed and can result in problems in a relationship.
There were some wonderful questions the book asked. How does your spouse feel about the way you speak and act around them? How does your behavior affect your mate’s sense of worth and self-esteem? Would your husband or wife say you’re a blessing, or that you’re condescending or embarrassing?
It went on to bring up a valid point…If you wish that your significant other would quit doing things that bother you, then it’s time for you to stop doing the things that bother them. You can’t expect changes from them if you aren’t willing to bend and make changes yourself. But that can mean you need to learn to swallow your pride. Will you take the time and effort to discover and avoid the behaviors that your mate doesn’t like about you? Will you actively work to admit your faults and work to make those changes?
There are three principles the book addresses that we can keep in mind in order to help us in this area:
- Guard the Golden Rule. Treat your significant other the way you wish to be treated.
- No double standards. Be considerate of your significant other in the same way you show consideration to your friends, co-workers or neighbors.
- Honor requests. Consider the things that you already know are bothersome to your significant other…are you working on those areas? Also, if you are unsure, take the initiative and ask!
The dare for day five:
The questions for pondering after the dare is completed: What things did your spouse point out about you that need your attention? How did you handle hearing it? What do you plan to do to improve these areas?
Well first of all, his responses were that he doesn’t like when I get negative about things easily, he doesn’t like when I make him feel like can’t do anything right or his attempts aren’t good enough when he does try. Admittedly, I’m not very surprised by the first one. We’ve talked about this before. I tend to react negatively about situations at times, often because I feel that if things don’t go as planned or if I’m not doing something the right way, I’m letting him down. So I tend to get very frustrated or upset if things don’t go how I want them to, and that translates into me becoming negative. He has told me before that he most often doesn’t care about the actual situation at hand, but does care how I respond to that situation. That is something I truly do want to work on. I know my tendencies are to be that way, so I want to work hard to counter that.
For the other point, I am a little upset to hear that he feels that way. I never want to make him feel like his attempts aren’t good enough or that his efforts are unappreciated. I can imagine how awful that would be if I was made to feel that way. The desire to do things then would be minimized if you feel like you aren’t appreciated for what you are doing. It makes you lose your desire to do things or make the effort if you feel it is met unfavorably. So this was pretty eye-opening for me and really made me realize that I need to show my appreciation for what he does more and not be so critical (even if I don’t realize I’m coming across that way). I’ve learned some really good things today, and I really hope to work on these points, too.
Day 5 down, 35 to go!!