1. Reacting is hearing gossip or hearsay about your spouse and viewing your spouse differently because of it. Responding is politely talking about the rumours with your spouse to know the truth.
2. Reacting is when your spouse says something that upsets you and then you beat up your spouse claiming your spouse provoked you. Responding is choosing to keep calm and walk away for a few minutes to avoid escalating things when your spouse upsets you.
3. Reacting is insulting, raping or demeaning your spouse when he/she chooses not to make love to you when you are in the mood. Responding is respecting your spouse enough to still love even when there is no sex immediately you want it, you will get it later.
4. Reacting is withholding your money or choosing to not provide for your children because of a misunderstanding with your spouse. Responding is meeting your obligations even as you work on resolving issues.
5. Reacting is threatening divorce when you don't get what you want yet you don't mean it. Responding is solving conflicts without planting seeds of separation.
6. Reacting is judging your spouse when he/she shares something private or unpleasant. Responding is listening to your spouse even when what is being shared is not easy, thus encouraging your spouse to trust you.
7. Reacting is accusing your spouse of cheating because he/she is friendly. Responding is getting your facts right so that you don't accuse your spouse falsely.
8. Reacting is cheating on your spouse just because he/she cheated as you throw your principles out of the window. Responding is refusing to allow your spouse to change you for the worse
9. Reacting is wanting to commit suicide just because your spouse has hurt you. Responding is knowing that your spouse is not your God, just because your spouse is not loving you right does not mean it's the end of life.
10. Reacting is making marital decisions out of panic. Responding is taking time to reflect and pray before deciding.
11. Reacting is being controlled by circumstances and external voices and events. Responding is being in control of your emotions, your next action and your future.
12. Reacting is blowing up a small issue into a never ending war. Responding is not exaggerating but mitigating issues quickly.
13. Reacting is sinking yourself in problems as you do more damage. Responding is assessing the situation and lifting yourself up.
In marriage, choose to respond, not to react. Reacting will cost you and do more harm than good. In marriage, calm heads need to prevail.
© Dayan Masinde
In my book, MANHOOD SERIES, I walk with men through the journey of understanding themselves and their woman.
In my other book, WOMANHOOD SERIES, I walk with women through the journey of self-discovery and how to relate with the man.
To purchase the MANHOOD SERIES written by Dayan Masinde, MPESA Ksh. 200 to 0721590954, then text the word MAN and your email address to the same number and the book will be sent to your email address for you to download and read on your phone or computer.
To purchase the WOMANHOOD SERIES written by Dayan Masinde, MPESA Ksh. 200 to 0721590954, then text the word WOMAN and your email address to the same number and the book will be sent to your email address for you to download and read on your phone or computer