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Are You Emotionally Intelligent? - Part 1

Day 1 - Mar 15, 2021

According to Daniel Goleman, an American psychologist who helped to popularize emotional intelligence, there are five key elements to it:

  • Self-awareness
  • Self-regulation
  • Motivation
  • Empathy
  • Social skills

So, how does Emotional Intelligence play a role in marriage?

The key lies in the power of UNITY!  It's when couples learn to listen to each other, allow room to be influenced by each other, and come into agreement.

In the Japanese martial art of Aikido, there’s a central principle called, "Yield to Win", which is a method of using your opponent’s energy and actions against them to win a fight, rather than strong-arming them into submission. It allows you to conserve energy and choose much more effective and efficient tactics.

We definitely don’t want you using Aikido moves on your spouse!  Try focusing on the principle.



Take Action

"Yielding to Win"

It means accepting, understanding, and allowing your partner’s perspective, feelings, and needs into your decision-making process as a couple. 

  • It means really listening to your partner and forming compromises so that you both feel satisfied.
  • It means yielding for a "Win-Win", and that’s what you should be aiming for.
  • What issue are you facing in your marriage right now that you need to be, "Yielding to Win"?

Day 2 - Mar 16, 2021

When you learn how to accept your partner’s influence and work toward a Win-Win solution, the outcome on your marriage is wonderful. 

In a study of 130 newlywed couples, we discovered that men who allow their wives to influence them have happier marriages and are less likely to divorce

  • Rejecting influence is a dangerous move!
  • Marriage can absolutely survive moments of anger, complaints, or criticism, and even some longer periods of negativity if conflict is managed in a healthy and respectful way.  

Conflict provides an opportunity for growth as a couple.  But couples get in trouble when they match negativity with negativity instead of making repairs to de-escalate conflict.

 



Take Action

You want to avoid arguments, but don't avoid conflict!

Marriages can flourish when conflict is handled correctly.  It provides an opportunity for growth as a couple.  

  • Couples get in trouble when they match negativity with negativity, instead of making repairs to de-escalate conflict.

 

Day 3 - Mar 17, 2021

There is a famous saying, “An eye for an eye will make the whole world blind.”

When tension rises our natural default communication style is to "Defend & Attack". Clearly, counterattacking during an argument does not solve an issue or help to form a compromise. It does not allow your partner’s influence in the decision-making process.

  • Research shows that 65% of men increase negativity during an argument.  


Take Action

While you're in the process of being more open to each others influence, be watchful for these 4 pitfalls.  

  1. Criticism                                                          
  2. Defensiveness                                                    
  3. Contempt                                                             
  4. Stonewalling  

These are telltale signs that you’re resisting your spouses influence.

 

Day 4 - Mar 18, 2021

Research shows that 65% of men increase negativity during an argument.  

You need to be aware of the differences in how men and women experience conflict.

Example: 

  • Men are more prone to stonewalling, and the research shows that 85% of stonewallers were men.  It takes two to make a marriage work and it is vital for all couples to keep honor and respect as central tenets of their relationship. 
  • Research also indicates that a majority of wives—even in unhappy marriages—already do this.

This doesn’t mean women don’t get angry and even contemptuous of their husbands. It just means that they tend to let their husbands influence their decision making by taking their opinions and feelings into account. 

Unfortunately, data suggests that men often do not return the favor, and if men don’t accept their partner’s influence, there is an 81% chance that a marriage will self-implode.  

  • You DON'T have to be in that statistic.
  • There is a 100% chance of your marriage succeeding if both spouses are willing to work on it.  


Take Action

Take this quick test:

  • When was the last time you asked and received influence from your spouse?
  • When was the last time your spouse asked and received influence from you?
  • Identify areas where you and your spouse are currently in agreement.  
    • Initiate a conversation on areas that concern you.
    • Use the TPC Method to set up your conversation for success. 
      • Time - Place - Content
      • Mutually set a Time and Place to discuss the Content that concerns you.  

Day 5 - Mar 19, 2021

Let's look at what men can learn from women.

Some say that men are from Mars and women are from Venus.  It's a common saying meant to emphasize the difference between men and women.

The differences start in childhood. When boys play games, their focus is on winning, not their emotions, or the others playing. If one of the boys gets hurt, he typically gets ignored and removed from the game. You see this in team sports all the time. Maybe someone comes to help carry the injured player off the field, but the game keeps going on.



Take Action

But here’s the difference.

In The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work, Dr. John Gottman explains that the truth is that "girlish games" offer better preparation for marriage and family life because they focus on relationships.” And that it isn’t necessarily about gender roles, but about learning emotional intelligence.

  • Remember, there is NO REAL WIN in a marriage argument unless both spouse's can raise their hands in victory.
  • It's more important to be in Agreement than to be Right.