The Happiness Project-February

The focus for February was love and marriage.

Quit Nagging: Don’t take anything for granted, focus on friendship, appreciate

I don’t care for the word nag. Maybe because it rhymes with hag. It does not sound like a nice word, and I guess it should not sound nice considering what act it is describing. I try to not nag at anyone. I guarantee it happens to my children though. They are at the ages where they are defying my requests as a mom. You know, the clean up your room, eat over the table, put your laundry in the basket, requests? My husband is so good in so many ways. He is not lazy, he is hardworking. I try to not nag at him, but again, it happens. I tried extra hard this month to not nag. I have some OCD tendencies, or, some things that bother me that far from bother him. I tried to just take a deep breath this month and put the pots and pans away that he leaves to dry on the stove top. He puts them there as he knows he is just going to use them again the next morning, but the clutter drives me absolutely crazy! Crazy enough that it will throw me off the happiness train for the whole morning. He does not leave them there to intentionally drive me nuts, it is just the way he is and he has reasons. I get it, so I took the initiative this month to just put them away without signs of being annoyed. Treat him like a friend was a suggestion from Gretchen. I wish this was easier. I get home and often he sees my crabby side, my impatient side, my anxious side. These are sides my friends do not see often. They will be there for me in times of need and they then see those qualities of mine. I tried extra hard to refrain from releasing those emotions in the presence of my hubby as much as I could. The appreciate piece of this was hard to change. I am constantly telling him “thank you”. I don’t know if he always hears those words, but I am aware I say them and I hope he hears them.

Don’t expect praise: just do it, don’t compare

The don’t compare suggestion was hard for me. In my mind I am constantly thinking about how I do this and that for the kids, how I do this and that around the house, how I get the groceries and keep us showing up at appointments on the right day. These are the strong cards that I play. He has strong cards too and some of those cards save us money even though they take time, He is good at fixing things, keeping our cars in good condition, taking care of our property. He takes great pride in these things. I love this about him. I tried to just do some of “my” tasks acknowledging that they are “just my role”. We have fallen into certain roles and I really should be thankful for the roles that he does take. Again, he is far from lazy. He gives me praise, my love language is words of praise, so at times I feel it is not enough. This can be hard. He does not always get to see the hard work I put into cleaning up toys, books, dishes, because as soon as they are picked up it is Murphey’s law that the girls will want to play with that particular tote of toys again or will need a snack. He doesn’t care that I organized the bathroom closet or the pantry and that is ok. If I did it and it makes me happy, that is all that should matter. I don’t need praise.

Fight right: lighten up, no snapping, no anger

I really feel that me being mindful of this months’ focus and then my focus on “expectations” (see my post on expectations).Expectations. Post 2 of 5. I feel like we fought less. We had one deep conversation which involved some hurt emotions, and not seeing eye to eye and a touchy subject, but instead of him walking away not wanting to listen, he did listen. I waited a couple of days until my gut said he was ready to discuss the topic at hand and it worked. We were both ready to discuss this situation that arised and, even though we didn’t agree 100% with one another, we still came to a conclusion where we both heard each other. It was a great improvement upon the way we have disagreed in the past.

No dumping: rely on friends for what they are here for

I don’t really want to dump anything on anyone. I don’t want to dump negativity on my husband, or my family or my friends. We do need to vent at times or talk through things and I think that is what Gretchen is saying. We need to be more aware of who we are conversing with and what the topic is. I have to be more aware that my girlfriends might be better confidants than my hubby on certain topics.

Give proofs of love

I am good about giving thank you notes out to friends and family. I am fairly good about sending out a quick note to say hello to friends too. I tried to do this a couple of times with My hubby. Like I did when we first started to date. A couple of times throughout each week I would send him a quick text to tell him I love him.

So did this months tasks make me happier? I would say yes. Just having five short statements to keep at the top of my mind was helpful. I think it was good for marriage and strengthened how I tried to communicate with him.

I can tell you that I didn’t keep up with my exercises like I did in January. I need to remember to keep going with things that I find make me happy. Being active makes me happy and healthy. I hope that in March I can take a positive from January and February and carry them to the months to come. There needs to be a balance, that will be my true challenge.

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