Do Your Differences Divide You or Bring You Together?

Why does he do it that way? Can’t he do it the way that makes sense…the way that I like best.

Some days more than others the differences between my husband and I seem so obvious. We are different because of our gender differences and because of our personalities too. Some days who we are and how we do things could not seem more different. That is when there is a decision to be made. Do your differences divide you or bring you together?

This winter, my hubby and I read the book, The Road Back to You. It is a book about personality types according to the Enneagram. The Enneagram is a tool that many have found helpful when it comes to understanding the personalities of people around them. It specifically pinpoints the strengths of someone that is healthy and struggles when someone is not healthy in their personality type.

Think about that thing between you and your spouse right now… it could be an annoyance or a way you aren’t seeing eye to eye with each other right now. Where is the disconnect? How are your individual differences getting in the way of being able to work together and appreciate each other in this situation?

Here is what I would encourage you to do:

  1. Notice: How are differences in personality between how you communicate or approach a situation in general life together causing division?

  2. How do they help in the situation?

  3. How are they getting in the way of working together in the situation?

  4. What are your spouse’s strengths when it comes to this situation and your life together?

  5. Initiate a discussion with your spouse about the disconnect between the two of you. Ask your spouse some open-ended questions like: Why do you think we are getting stuck in this area? What can we do to get on the same page? Take the time to talk to each other about where each of you is getting stuck. Make sure you let them talk without interjecting and ask that they give the same to you when you have your turn. Sometimes we stop in the frustration. When you take the time to share how you are feeling and your perspectives then you have a place to work from.

Take advantage of this printable to help with this process.

Take a step back, how are each of your characteristics the similarities and differences helpful as you work as a team in your marriage and family? What can you do to keep this idea at forefront?

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