Do you remember any books you read from the 5th grade? Maybe it was a Choose Your Own Adventure tale, 101 Ways to Eat Fried Worms, or the one about a Lion, a Witch, and a Wardrobe. The one that immediately comes to my mind?
How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie. My dad knew my intimate knowledge of Star Wars would only get me so far in life, so he made me read this book with no pictures.
Carnegie, the sensei of sales, said If you want to have friends, and success in life, simply get people talking about their favorite subject – themselves. It’s not bad advice for husbands.
Peter, one of the first followers of Jesus, an accomplished fisherman, writer of Scripture, and married, wrote, “Live with your wives in an understanding way…” We may never completely understand the woman we live with, but this month at UNCOMMEN we are making at attempt to live in an understanding way.
After you’ve been married for a few years it’s easy to move from investigative journalist to anchorman. Anchormen simply report what’s happening during the day, journalists seek to understand the person their interviewing.
When marriage is made up of two anchors, it can weigh your relationship down. You get home, report on your day, and then binge watch Netflix. I’m sure that’s not what you had in mind when you said, “I do.”
Let’s be honest, most of us have about two questions in us after work, “How was your day?” and “What should we eat for dinner?”
So I channeled my inner Carnegie and asked a bunch of women on Facebook how we husbands can be more investigative..
Write these down in your journalist notepad. keep them handy:
- What do you feel called to do that will create change in yourself or others?
- What areas do you want to grow in?
- If we could read any book together, what would it be about?
- Do you need my help with anything?
- What are your priorities concerning our marriage, the children, the house, the finances, or just life?
- Would you like to go on a date?
- Would you pray with me?
- What were some highlight moments of this week?
- Can you elaborate? (that’s a great follow up question)
- What are you passionate about?
- If she has told you an area of stress or struggle, check in a few days later and ask how it’s going.
- Can I make breakfast?
- What’s ONE thing I could help you accomplish?
One woman wrote, “I think women crave sincerity and want to go beyond the surface of ‘How was your day?’ Get specific and wait around for the answer.”
You don’t have to be smarter than a 5th grader to win and influence your wife – you just need a few well placed questions.