Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Motivating Your Spouse

So I posed this question on Facebook today (after explaining that my husband and I were fine... I got some good responses). The RED is female responses and the BLUE is male. It quite an interesting case study :)

How do you motivate your spouse?

1) Do it your self. I find by the time I use my energy nagging and getting really mad I could of done it myself and moved on lol
2) M. and I usually have to fight about it before we can motivate each other. But that's just how we work.
3) I'm not married so I'm just throwing it out there, but maybe ask your spouse how he would prefer you to ask about certain topics? E.g. "Instead of nagging you to clean up your laundry, how would you prefer I talk to you about this?"

4)  5 years later, and I'm still trying to figure that one out... Sometimes I ask nicely - stressing that I would really appreciate it - and that works, but it doesn't always. There is also the do it yourself strategy that makes him feel guilty, but that may lead to a fight if "he was going to do it" eventually... Beth is right, often a fight is the only thing that initiates immediate change, but it can come at the risk of making him get down on himself which can have negative long-term impacts depending on the seriousness of the issue. Really, there's no good answer to this one. 
5) I'd said either do it yourself, or use a reward system. Like "honey, I'd really like to do (insert activity here) for/with you, but I'm swamped doing these things. Could you help me, please?"
6) Depends what it is... For example I put laundry baskets where his clothes would normally be dropped... But he wants me to sit with him after the kiddo goes to bed- so he does dishes I cook and keep up the house.
if you find the answer to this, let me know. 5.5 years later, I don't have it. But for the record, I often now just don't ask. We still argue plenty, but there are some things he's always always going to 'forget' to do and I try to let a lot more of them go than I used to. Usually, once the fight is over, I really don't care all that much about whatever started it. So I try super hard (and often fail) to remember that before I start the 'motivating' to begin with. On the other hand, for something that has to get done, I've found not asking when he's right in the middle of doing something he likes helps. But everyone is right. No really good solution to this.
8) Hide the Xbox!
9) I find if I ask too many times I get mad... So I will sometimes do it before I get to that point or i offer to hire a handy man to do it for him. ( that usually either motivates him or he will agree
10) Haha okay. To be entirely honest I've found that action precedes motivation, which means that motivation must come from within. If someone really wants to do something or make something happen, they will do it. If they don't, they wont.
11) It depends on what it is and the level of importance, typically I ask nicely and if that doesn't work I start trying to do it myself, usually that does the trick. Or I pull out my social work tricks and explain my reasoning etc. nothing works 100% of the time unfortunately!
12) The same way you get anyone to do anything: Do the thing they like most, then ask for what you want. For a husband, find out the SECOND thing he likes most and do that. I say second b/c first is too obvious and doesn't always work.

Try reading "How to Win Friends and Influence People" by Dale Carnegie and "The Five Love Languages" by Gary Chapman. Ignore the unfortunate title of the first book. It sounds so insulting to recommend the title it but its a good read.

13) posting this question on facebook where he can read it is a great start!
14) We talked about what chores were important to each of us and which ones we hated and separated them that way. I usually just tell T. why something is important to me and he will do it, and vice versa. And there's always prayer
15) I usually ask and if it doesn't get done I do it. I just move forward through my day. Unfortunately, I have ALWAYS bathed the children since birth, but C. baths them from time to time if I'm not available. we also split chores...kitchen, mine and kiddos' laundry, and kiddos' rooms.
16) I try not to nag but it's hard since I've asked a million times then complimented him about random stuff. So then I have to be very mean then it gets done lol. Read the five languages of love.
17) Sex works every time
18)  I agree, Communication is key. He might know that you want something but he might not know how much important it is to you. As an atheist, it think prayer is just as effective as visualization.
19) For us (it mostly works): I cook you clean. Seems fair.
20) What [#3] said (asking "how do you want me to remind you of ___?") works pretty well for us. That way we can ask things of each other without feeling naggy. A few things that haven't worked but have hilarious results: emulating the habit that you wish to change in the hopes of showing how annoying it is, going over your to do list out loud within earshot of the other person, allowing important things to remain undone while you take care of whatever you need the other person to do. This last one actually produced disastrous results because the thing I needed to be doing getting a fussy baby asleep for a nap, and instead, I carried him around with me while I did some household chores. I felt horrible, but the sound of a screaming baby is very motivating.
21) (from my husband's brother) Tell him to get off his ass and get it done. Seems to work for me. Ask Natalie she gets me motivated about stuff all the time.
Oh, If its not about my brother, I can't help you. Good luck.
22) Be open and up front about the issue
23) Bribery. Works every time.
24) I really enjoyed Mark Gungors "Laugh your way to a better marriage" series ( he has a website- materials can be accessed for free at the chaplains office for military ) he says you just have to be okay with asking a bunch of times. Nag is more a contemptuous attitude than asking. Ask and keep on asking Chica- Jesus said so lol

25) Positive reinforcement...and using a lot of "I" statements maybe?

26) Also, "I feel" statements - "I feel like you're not listening" instead of saying "you're not listening." definitely decreases the sense of attack.

27) get to the point and don't let it linger, yes word like "we and us" helps but in the end you got to tell it like it is and keep your priorities straight. Then if there's no response....you ramp it up to in your face stuff...

28) Google "I statements" and write one that works for you. Here is an example" when u don't take out the trash when I ask u too, I feel ignored. What I would like Is for you to make a regular schedule and set a reminder on your phone so I don't have to behave like your mom!!

Any of you have other ideas???

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