A thoughtful gift from her brother-in-law has helped Philoso B learn how to harness the differences between her and her husband to create harmony in the household. She shares with us how she came to realise that being different can actually make you just right for one another.
I’m a procrastinator of note. An indecisive and careful human being. I take time deciding on what to wear, which movie to watch or what to eat. Even then, when I finally do decide, I then wonder if I’ve made a good choice. I have great ideas, but take my time before implementing them. I’m cautiously scrutinizing all the reasons why the idea is great in the first place. Facing a decision on my own proves a daunting task, but having to decide with others is a breeze. I’ll list the various options, and they’ll take the decision!
On the other hand, I’m a planner. I make lists of things I need to do, internet sites I want to visit, or where I’d like to go to on the weekend. If we plan a weekend away, I make a list of everything – from the clothes I need to pack to the routes we need to take to get to our destination. I never go to the Movie House without knowing what is showing, and at what time. I check out the menu of a restaurant we plan to go to on the internet, and make a list of what I’d like to have, from the entrees to the cocktails!
I used to think I was a strikingly unusual person, and would often suppress my need to plan or write down lists, almost to the point of near depression! Sometimes I would write on a tiny piece of paper and hide it, so no one would discover my “illness” or “compulsiveness”! My husband found me, on many an occasion, rather difficult or impossible – things like offering to buy me lunch would require him to be patient (something he’s not usually) and list the various options, while I make faces and shake my head. Spontaneity on his part is a definite no-no, as the Mrs needs to know ALL the details, and plan accordingly! Poor guy!
This was before my brother in law (bless his dear heart), gave me a book to read titled ‘Personality Plus’ by Florence Littiauer.
The book touches on the four key personality types we are all blessed with, and gives valuable insight into appreciating our ‘one of a kind’, God-given personalities. It also guides one with ways to improve upon strengths and correct where any of our weaknesses are. Although some generalisations are made in this book, I must say it has given me the wisdom I need to develop myself and my relationship with others.
Allow me explain…
My husband’s personality is characterised by pragmatism. He makes decisions fast, and acts almost immediately. I on the other hand am indecisive, and take time to make a decision! He has great problem solving skills and is quick to find the solutions. Yours truly, is talkative, and prefers to go about the matter in detail before any solution is reached (if we’ll ever get to that part. ‘Blah, blah, blah…’). You may think these are typical of male and female behaviours. Then again, you have not met my sister! She can be blunt and controlling. Very head-strong and focused and has great leadership qualities! She has a very similar personality to that of my husband.
Now that I’m armed with this knowledge, I am able to react differently to my husband’s impulsiveness and need to be in control. I misunderstood him for being insensitive and critical before, and would pout for days – typical of my personality type. His impulsiveness was no match to my planning nature, and this annoyed him almost to frenzy. Until, on weekends away, he’d find that he had forgotten one thing or another in his moments of haste. His Dearest, having drawn up a list of ‘things we will need’ days before, would have conveniently packed the forgotten items. Nowadays, instead of being met with impatience and frustration over my need to write everything down, I’m asked if I’ve drawn up “our” going away list!
Luckily, we have complementary qualities, in that, while he may rush into decisions, and could quite possibly miss important facts; I make the balance by ruminating about the issue. This way, all bases are covered, and a decision is made. Where he is sure and outspoken, I am hesitant and tactful.
The lesson here I found where most are trying to change one another. Once we all learn to acknowledge our different personality strengths (and weaknesses), we can be grateful that one partner’s strengths fills in the other’s weaknesses. Being different from one another, does not make us wrong.
Philoso B is an inquisitive yet imaginative human being, intrigued mostly by issues that challenge our way of life. She’s an avid reader who enjoys reading both literature, and people…
Image: fevos (c)