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FAMILY THERAPIST - A Word to Wise Women:
What can You do to be Sound Minded?
February, 2008 - Issue #40
Congratulations! We've lived though the holidays once again. This season, I had the most interesting conversations with absolute strangers. I made a point of starting up dialogue with other women shoppers while standing shoulder to shoulder in those eternally-long checkout lines. As I listened as women shared their stories, common themes emerged. For the most part, they talked about husband stress, shopping stress, buying stress and kid stress.

Repeatedly, these conversations brought to mind a particular favorite verse of mine from the Bible in the book of Proverbs. Chapter 14, verse one says, "A wise woman builds her house but a foolish one tears it down with her own hands." We would never consciously have that as a goal, would we? In considering this for myself and my home I gave a lot of thought to my own actions and the actions of women in my life who I consider wise - women who I observe actively working hard daily at the concept of being sound-minded.

Here are some of the thoughts and beliefs they have shared with me.

WISE Women

W for Warrior
A woman should be a warrior for her home. She fights to protect her marriage and treats her marriage as a covenant. She fights for a respectful attitude towards her husband and teaches her children to be respectful. She fights (herself) to keep positive thoughts, remembering that thoughts produce feelings, feelings produce actions and actions produce habits. She fights to maintain the discipline of her thought in her life. She guards against other idols coming into her heart and into her home. She fights to remember to praise first her husband and her kids.

I for Intimacy
A woman is an intimate companion. She is not afraid to consider intimacy and actively seeks to create an environment in her home that promotes passion and closeness. She works hard to make sure her husband knows that their home is safe for him.

S for Service
A wise woman serves. Too often, women and men are confused about their roles. A wise woman is not afraid of the differences between men and women and she's thankful to be a woman and to offer service in her home to her husband and her children.

E is for Empowering

A wise woman empowers her husband to be his best. This isn't to say that he doesn't also have the opportunity to empower you, too; however, we only can control ourselves. I find it amazing what happens in our relationship when I focus on creating a home environment that benefits my husband; one that supports him and facilitates a peaceful relationship.

Remember that scene from "My Big Fat Greek Wedding?" The daughter is upset because she doesn't think her dad will let her go to college. Mom basically says, "I'll help handle the situation" and the daughter replies, "It won't do any good, what Dad says always goes because he's the head of the house." Well, Mom tells her, "Yup - Dad is the head, however a good wife is the neck and can turn the head any way she wants!" I see in that silly movie scene a real-life opportunity for women to provide a home that positively empowers their husbands to be their best.

Now the action part... Wisdom comes through experience and experience through living life. Would you be willing to:

Do one thing this week that your husband has asked you to do but you (kind of)ignore?

Initiate intimacy (even if, and especially if, you've been holding out because you are angry about something)?

Give your husband one compliment a day for a week?

Nothing beats love at first sight except love with insight, which comes with time, with mistakes and with wisdom. If we're willing to be a warrior out there in the retail world we ought to be just as willing to battle for our families.

Kim likes talking strategy. E-mail her at kschafer@insidescv.com for your personalized game plan.
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