Wednesday, May 26, 2010

how to agree

Having Trouble Making Decisions Together? Here Is Help!

In our Marriage Counseling practice, we are often asked about situations where couples have a difficult time making decisions. Each spouse is vested in getting their own way. So how should a couple make decisions?

Step One:

The first thing to do is to notice that you are not in agreement in the very early stages of your discussion. The reason we say 'œnotice you are not in agreement' is because most couples bypass the disagreement and go straight to conflict. When you take time to notice that you are not in agreement, you have the best opportunity to go into healthy communication about the disagreement.

Step Two:

After noticing, the next step is for someone to say 'œwell honey, it looks like we are not in agreement. Let's brainstorm about it and see if we can make some progress'.

Step Three:

Brainstorming. Few people know how to brainstorm well. They make comments, criticisms and judgments about the other person's ideas. In effective brainstorming there are no dumb ideas. Each spouse goes back and forth giving one idea at a time. The listening spouse does not give any feedback except saying the work 'œOK'. Then the other spouse gives an idea. The listening spouse does not give any feedback including whether they thought it was a good idea or not. The couple brainstorms until there are no more ideas left from either of them.

After all ideas have been shared the couple ask your spouse if they feel any agreement with any of the ideas. If they have, you can stop there and end the decision making process. If agreement has not been reached you go to the next step.

Step Four:

If agreement has not been reached it is time to pray together for guidance. Although prayer should always be our first step in any decision, we want you to be able to have your ideas laid out in front of the Lord. If you pray first you will only have your two opposing positions to lay before the lord. Take time to listen to what the Lord is saying. This is usually not an audible voice or thought that comes to you mind. The key is to see which idea brings the most peace.

Step Five:

If an agreement still has not been reached the final decision should rest upon the husband-as God has appointed him to be the spiritual leader of the home. This is not a license for the husband to make all decisions. There is a heavy burden and responsibility on the husband if he makes the decision on his own. In the position of Servant Leader in the marriage the husband should regard his wife's preferences as often as possible. The Bible tells us to put the other first. In Ephesians 5:33 the Bible says that husbands are to unconditionally love their wives and wives are to unconditionally respect their husbands. When this relationship is in place disagreements will rarely if ever lead into conflict.

When couples utilize the above mentioned plan for decision making they can avoid many conflicts.
in Home and Family
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