Friends, I hope you are staying cool somehow in this crazy heat (at least in California we are having an epic heat wave).
I am excited to share with you that Focus on the Family is running an episode in which I share tips on “How to Have a Happier Husband”. I love helping marriages become everything you wished it would be before you were married. If you need a re-direct on focusing on you marriage or want some new ideas on how to make your husband feel loved, respected, care-for and important, this episode is fun and helpful. I hope you enjoy and share with your friends.
This question comes up a lot when I’m speaking: What should I do when my husband is overwhelmed?
And I get it – we are all looking for ways to connect during the hardest times.
His struggle could be because of work – or finances. Or there’s stuff going on with his parents, or in your family. Whatever the reason, we all know when it’s happening.
Maybe he gets really quiet and withdrawn. He may be in a place where talking about it (or about anything,) is overwhelming. He’s exhausted, so either he sleeps all the time or he doesn’t sleep at all.
You know what it looks like for your man. But when you see it happening, don’t just wait for the wave to pass. There are things you can do to actively help your man during this difficult time.
Here are ten things you the right away when you realize your husband is overwhelmed:
1. Feed Him Food. It makes him feel like everything might be okay for just this one hour. I don’t want it to seem like I’m making our guys into cavemen, but there is something about knowing where his next meal is coming from that can really make a man feel more secure. Cook him one of his favorites. 2. Brag on Him. Let him hear you bragging on him – to your friend, to your kids, to his mom. Pick one thing he did this week (went to work on a hard day, played tickle monster with the kids,) and make sure he knows how much it meant to you. 3. Unburden Him. Are there things around the house your husband normally does, that you, (or an older child) can do for him right now? Even hiring a teenager to mow the lawn could be just what your husband needs to know that you’ve got his back. 4. Seduce Him Again. Not trying to go caveman here, but sex is — for most men — the best tension reliever. Setting aside some time will do more for your husband than just about anything else. However, if sex is an area of discouragement, offer a no-strings-attached massage, or head, hand or foot rub. 5. Date Him. Plan a date geared for him. Take him to his favorite dinner spot and to a movie that involves a ball, something blowing up, or robots. 6. Treat Him. A Jamba Juice can improve my husband’s outlook on the world. Surprise him with a little something to let him know that you were thinking of him. 7. Encourage Him. One of the reasons your husband may feel overwhelmed is that he is feeling undervalued. What can you say to make him know that he is valued and respected? Tell him. Need some ideas to get your encouraging words flowing? Download my 21 Post-it-Note Encouragements. 8. Tag Him. Give your man a Facebook or Instagram shout-out and let the world know why he is just that awesome. 9. Pray for Him. Set an alarm on your phone and stop and pray for your husband every single day. Need some inspiration? It’s important to let your husband know you’re praying for him. Roger walks with new confidence when he knows I’ve got his back, prayer-wise. 10. Surprise Him. I have an alert on Amazon any time my man’s favorite author releases a new book. Surprise him with something he loves.
It’s like we were two ships passing in the night. Something was out of sync, and my husband and I just weren’t connecting in the everyday.
I think he thought everything was fine but I was frustrated by how little we communicated.
He got home after I put our son to bed which left only a few brief hours together before sleep. My husband was tired from working all day and teaching jiu-jitsu after work.
When he came home, he showered and sat on the couch to catch up on his favorite TV shows. I felt undervalued and overlooked. It seemed like I was only receiving the leftover scraps from his day.
When he was finally interested in connecting on a physical level my love tank was low, and I was half asleep. How could I be in the mood or right frame of mind?
Studying my spouse
As an engaged couple, we attended a marriage retreat in which we learned the value of studying your spouse. Something about studying my husband stuck with me.
My husband is a creature of habit. I started paying attention to see how I could interject myself into his daily routine.
Every night when he got home from jiu-jitsu he showered. One night I asked if I could join him in the shower. He was surprised by my new gesture and welcomed my company.
While under the spray of water, he told me about his day. In fact, he didn’t stop talking. I was floored!
So the next night when he got in the shower, I jumped in too. Once again he talked my ear off, then he asked me about my day.
After a week of this, I knew I was onto something. We were communicating and connecting on a deeper level. It was amazing!
Had I never joined him in the shower, he would have gone about his normal routine, and I would have felt deflated. Instead, our “shower talks,” became our new favorite time of day.
His schedule changed, and he no longer teaches after work, but our “shower talks” are still a part of our daily routine.
One Small Win: Through studying my husband, I discovered an opportunity to make more meaningful connections. I helped foster a safe place where we both could share freely, resulting in both our emotional and physical needs being met. We found a true connection in an unlikely place.
What About You?
Is your husband a creature of habit? What are his routines? I encourage you to study him and discover where you can interject yourself into his life. Finding unconventional ways to meet your husband in his daily habits will do wonders for your marriage.
Julie Landreth has a passion for healthy and thriving relationships – especially in marriage and friendship. She is a speaker and a “wife coach” who loves sharing with women her passion for prayer and ways to actively cultivate a thriving marriage.
She leads a growing number of women in San Jose, CA through her curriculum: Consistency and Persistency: The Art of Praying for your Husband. Having been married 12 years, she and her husband cultivated a marriage filled with intentional love, effective communication, sustainable fun, and a date night every Friday night for the last nine years. She also finds deliberate ways to spend quality time with her nine-year-old son who shares many of her artistic talents.
Why can’t my husband be more like me? I don’t need reminders. I see how dirty the floor is, and I put things back where they belong to make life easier for the next person.
If only my husband were more like … me!
Life sure would be easier if my husband saw these things like I see them, take action, and think ahead. Our marriage would be a whole lot better if he were more like … me.
I’ve had these thoughts more often than I’d like to admit. I am really good at seeing how the world looks through my eyes. But even if I had perfect vision, which I don’t, my narrow vision often blinds me from seeing the good in how my husband navigates life.
Why different vision is better
When I forget my husband sees the world through different eyes, I easily start feeling overwhelmed with a desire to make him more like me. When I get wrapped up in feeling certain that my way is the best way, I end up thinking that my husband’s ways are flat-out wrong.
And when I start thinking my husband’s ways are wrong, I’ve lost sight of his strengths.
A Dance For Two
The reality is (and the research shows) women are great at tackling many things at once. While men are skilled at focusing their attention on one thing at a time.
While it’s easy to raise our hands and do a victory dance at how us gals can talk on the phone, write out the grocery list, put dinner together, and change a diaper all at the same time. Our husbands get to do a victory dance of their own. As proud as we are of how God made us, we would be wise to also celebrate how God made our husbands.
We find joy when we intentionally find the good in something that frustrates us.
One Small Win: Today, think of one thing you typically wish your husband would do differently. Tell him (or text, call, or write him a note) that you are thankful he does this thing differently than you. (And, for extra credit, tell him why).
For example: I wish my husband would put his dirty clothes in the basket and do the laundry. “Honey, I am thankful that you don’t feel the need to be as tidy as I am. Sometimes, I don’t like that I am so hard-wired to be such a neat freak. I don’t appreciate enough that I could learn a thing or two from how laid back you are in this area. I may just forget about the laundry tonight and join you in watching a show.”
Embrace The Differences
Husbands tend to be better at loving us as we are. They typically don’t spend their lives trying to make us more like…them.
Imagine a marriage where your husband feels comfortable not having to do everything according to your version of “right”.
Imagine intentionally trading in your thoughts of disappointment and resentment toward your husband for thoughts of celebration and love.
What one thing will you celebrate about your husband today?
Amanda Davison is on a mission to share how her education in counseling and God’s word changed her marriage. She is sure to share personal, laugh-out-loud moments, which are woven with challenging yet inviting perspective change. As a speaker and wife coach, she tackles topics such as, becoming a confident wife, handling the real frustrations as wives, knowing and owning our high call as wives, and obedience. She wants to hear from you and hopes you will join with her on the journey of learning to love God’s people well.
Today is the final day of our love challenge, but the reality is, we can keep up these simple habits every day. For our Day 5 challenge to love on your man, I want you to love him with scripture.
I know it comes as no surprise to you that I believe one of the most powerful ways for a woman to love and support her husband is to pray for him. So that is what I’m asking you to do today! Putting some power behind those prayers by putting some scripture into it.
Here are some of my favorite scriptures to pray for Roger:
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Philippians 4:6
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7
What is your husband going through right now? Is he feeling overwhelmed or in a season of life where he feels depressed? Is work stressful or does he just feel a little bored with life? Search out scripture to pray for him for his specific season in life. Envelope him in the love of his Heavenly Father and YOU!
Want more? I am over at Focus on the Family radio broadcast today where I share “Simple Ways to Help Your Husband Feel Loved”.
Listen In and leave a comment about your favorite tip!
Today is the Last Day to Win!
Answer the Question of the Day on Kathi’s Facebook page for your chance to win a copy of 101 Ways to Tell Your Husband You Love Him!
Today’s question: What Scripture will you prayer over your husband this week?
We’ve made it to Day 4 of our 5 Day Love Challenge, and it’s time to talk about sex, ladies. Let’s love him with sex. It is an important to marriage and feeling connected.
Your man needs and wants sex, probably more than you do.
If a man feels like he’s desirable to you, the love of his life, the other areas he may be struggling in (work, parenting, etc.) somehow seem more manageable.
One time this week, it’s your job to initiate sex. For some of you, this is going to be way beyond your comfort zone. Do what you can – if it means snuggling, do that. The idea here is to take the first step and be open and tender.
In my experience, it’s better to shoot for earlier in the week to “make your move,” so that if things come up (he has to work late, sick kids, etc.) you still have some time to check this off your list. If you love him with sex, you will make your man’s week! Because we all want to be desired.
In preparation for your romantic evening, I encourage you to pick up a book on the subject. Let it be your inspiration in case things have become a little predictable (or downright non-existent). I particularly like these two books by Dr. Kevin Lehman: “Sex Begins in the Kitchen” and “Sheet Music”.