1. Know your spouse's past struggles to appreciate how far he/she has come. This will help you to understand your spouse's fears, potential, victories and concerns.
2. Ask for your spouse's opinion on your own growth. This gives your spouse a chance to challenge you. Allow your spouse to challenge you before you seek to challenge him/her.
3. Do not praise others in attempt to challenge him/her to be better, don't make your spouse feel you are comparing him/her with others.
4. Do not use hurtful words such as "Women like you already have a Master's Degree, what do you have?", "You need to man up and be the man of this home, these days I feel like I am the man in this marriage". These words don't challenge, they make your spouse defensive.
5. Appreciate your spouse for the progress he/she has made so far. Challenging your spouse without appreciating what he has accomplished so far feels like an ungrateful attack.
6. Ask your spouse "What is your dream in life?". This gives you something to hold him/her to account and also shows care.
7. Ask your spouse "How can I help you to fulfil your dream?". This shows teamwork and gives you access to challenge him/her.
8. Share content and opportunities for growth with your spouse but don't overdo it. When you over do it, it feels like you are forcing yourself on him/her or trying to micromanage him/her.
9. Praise him/her in front of others. This gives a confidence boost and leads to more effort from your spouse.
10. Be patient with your spouse. We all grow at different paces. You too might be weak in some areas and need your spouse to be patient with you.
11. Don't talk as if you are better off saying things like "You are not as serious in life as me", "You are letting me down". Such words suggest you two are in competition or a threat to each other.
12. Know that your spouse can be having a bad moment. Sometimes it is not that your spouse is lazy but that he/she could be emotionally down or going through a lot and needs you to understand. Don't write him/her off.
13. Know that your spouse has different seasons. Sometimes your spouse will try all he/she can but doors still don't open. Be there in good and bad seasons.
14. Allow your spouse to grow his/her way. Don't force your pattern on your spouse. Challenge your spouse to be better but allow him/her to find his own unique path to growth.
15. Pray for your spouse in his/her presence. Let your spouse hear you committing them to God in prayer, it shows true love.
© Dayan Masinde
In my book, MANHOOD SERIES, I walk with men towards understanding themselves and help women to understand men.
In my other book, WOMANHOOD SERIES, I walk with women towards understanding themselves and help men to understand women. ___________________________________
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.