Living More Comfortably and Securely
Most of the articles that I write are prompted by questions I get from callers. Callers have a real knack for focusing on important human needs. One lady I spoke with recently asked “How can I be more secure when I feel so insecure regarding my whole life?”
This lady in particular felt totally stuck. She felt that her marriage was totally stagnant. Afraid her husband was having an affair, she felt unattractive to him and he refused to communicate with her on how to better the situation. He refused to go to counseling, saying nothing was “wrong” with him and that he didn’t see the point, feeling it a waste of time and money.
From his point of view, everything was satisfactory—he went to work in the day and out at night, leaving his wife home with the three children. My point here is not that I feel the woman is the victim and the man the victimizer. My point is that in our reading I saw that while she could not change her husband, she could change the circumstances in her life, enough to open the way to a new way of thinking for herself.
I told her that I saw her pursuing one new activity for herself, whether it be working out at the gym twice a week or going to a class with other women or some similar activity. She admitted that she had thought about this but that she had never followed through. And, she asked, what difference would that make to her marriage?
Sometimes an answer is given to me to a caller’s question where the answer may not at first seem relevant at all. It is not my intention to be mysterious. But sometimes the answer isn’t the straightforward one that could be expected, not a yes or a no or a “you need to leave him and find someone else.” In her case, for example, the answer was given that she needed to add something to her own life, to make a positive change in some fashion.
When she asked what difference such an activity would make to her marriage, I told her that I could see several avenues. One was that she would develop a support system that would enable her to make a positive change, other women who would encourage and advise her. Another path possible was that her husband would start seeing her as an individual, not just a mother or a wife, but a person who was multi-faceted. Still another was that she would develop some personal energy and perspective on where she wanted to go.
In other words, to feel more secure in our lives, sometimes we need to make a small change.
The big change might seem out of our reach and ability at first. A small change that we enjoy is not so impossible to achieve, especially with the encouragement of others. This lady felt unloved,
unappreciated and isolated. I would encourage her to begin with the small things. There are many sayings I have heard in this regard. One is that “to lose 100 pounds, you have to lose the first pound” and “to walk a hundred miles, you have to walk the first mile.” And this is so true in our personal relationships. To achieve the results that we want, first we must begin with the small things. I have found that, after that, the big things will follow.
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