Archives for marriage

How & Why I Work So Hard to Brain Wash My Husband…

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This blog post is taken from Jessica’s home blog at www.wholeheartart.com

I have a plan to take over my husband’s brain…

BWAHAHAHAHA.

No really, I work relentlessly to brain wash him (as most women do), the only thing is I don’t brain wash him with my thoughts or what I think would be the best… I work at brainwashing him to better empower HIS THOUGHTS with who he considers are “the greats”. Imagine being married to a man like Billy Graham, John Maxwell, George Muller, Gary Chapman, Dale Carnegie, Malcolm Gladwell, or even Jesus. WAIT – WHAT?! Yes, I am married to a Jesus type man – and it all came about through brain washing.

You think I am kidding? Nope. Not at all. See, for 19 years this July I will have read OUT LOUD hundreds of books in the car while we go places. Books that are mostly non-fiction (I think the only ‘fiction’ book I have ever read was The Greatest Miracle in the World by Og Mandino) I have read books that inspire, books that teach, and books that can motivate even the most weary soul. Mostly, I have read books by people and subjects only HE is interested in learning more about. Frankly, I have come to enjoy them too.

HONESTLY

Honestly, it’s hard for me to keep a straight face when I hear wives who tell me they are struggling in their marriage, and they believe they have done everything they can to inspire their spouse. Until you have read out loud hundreds of books to your husband that inspire him – in my opinion, you haven’t. 

I learned long ago my mission in life… was my husband. I also learned I am the thermostat in our house, and only I HAVE THE POWER to turn on or “off” my husband.  This does not mean my husband does not have a mind of his own – this means that MEN ENJOY BEING WITH WOMEN MORE  than they enjoy being ALONE (even with their own thoughts). We as wives can take advantage of this desire – in a good way or in a bad way.

Let’s take for example the married couple who is struggling. They argue all the time, or worse yet they don’t even talk, and yet somehow they stick together. They still go places, they still sit in the same room watching different programs on their mobile devices – why? Because God made them to “go together”. The reason these two are together, is because it is nature and at its most remedial it is good. 

What they are doing with their time – not so good. 

In most unhappily married cases – 9 out of 10 of them – the “dead time” in which a couple is together in this natural environment is spent unwisely. Typically it consists of a wife nagging her husband on all the things he ISN’T doing right. This my friends sadly is fact. Words like this are routinely spoken, “You never! Why didn’t you! Why can’t you be more like (so and so)!” 

Yet, the husband (who doesn’t want to be alone) will continue to go back to the verbal attacks and engage SOMETIMES, but most often will sit by and let his wife get more and more mad. She on the other hand will be frustrated because she EXPECTS change out of her “dead beat” husband, (which in all honesty is also 9-10 times the case as unmotivated men are in epidemic portions in this generation) and yet he refuses to move, change, grow, or learn anything new on his own.

WHERE I AM “DIFFERENT”

Here is where I am different. I was engaged twice to men I thought were going to be “the one” by the time I was 18. I desperately wanted to me a wife and a mommy. I also was taught I needed to “go to school”. So naturally, I discovered and looked for classes that would best come in alignment with my ambitions to be a “professional housewife”. I studied Psychology, Neuroscience, Childhood Development, Biblical Studies, Humanities, Art Appreciation, Art History, History, and Social Sciences. As time progressed, I added courses on Leadership, Public Speaking, Writing, Teaching, and Marriage Relationships. In all this learning about the brain, neuroscience, personalities, and personality disorders – I learned that our brains are LITERALLY sponges and will “SOAK UP” whatever we expose them to. As a strategic woman, as a Woman of God who understands the power God has given me in a marriage relationship, I decided to embark on an experiment of epic proportions – BRAIN WASHING MY HUSBAND FOR SUCCESS.

WE WERE YOUNG

Jeff and I were only 19 and 21 when we met. His first job was at a retailer as a temporary job during the Christmas rush. I worked at the mall. Neither of us had finished college and while we took courses intermittently, education to us has always been and “ongoing process” not a final destination. In other words, we were not college grads. If we EVER needed to learn anything we picked up a book, or sought a personalized teacher of life.  Now we both own our own businesses, we have been asked to speak in public to groups as collegiate as Stanford University, we have been written up in magazine articles and have been interviewed for online publications on the topics of family, success, and business. This DID NOT HAPPEN BY ACCIDENT.

MY BODY WISHED IT COULD SLEEP

Since we were broke as a new couple and spent most of our married life as students of it (life) instead of masters of it – if we EVER needed to go anywhere, we DROVE. Imagine having no car stereo and driving everywhere in ONE CAR. I can remember driving Jeff to work daily 1.5 hour round trips, so I could have the car for the day. Or driving down to California from Oregon, 13 hour road trips. We even drove as a family once from California to South Dakota and back. What would you do with all that time?

I READ OUT LOUD.

My body wished it could have slept. My flesh WANTED to look at People Magazine or read US!, heck even a CD or two would have been great. But these are the opportunities I decided long ago as a Psyche student could MAKE or BRAKE our success as a family. I have read SOOO MANNNYY BOOOKKKSS. Thankfully, my husband likes the sound of my voice, odds are yours likes the sound of your voice too… the secret here however is, I NEVER READ BOOKS I WAS ONLY INTERESTED IN. I READ BOOKS ABOUT THINGS HE WAS INTERESTED IN. 

Was it boring? Initially. You better believe reading how every hole on Augusta National Golf Course is played strategically IS BORING. The only words I even recognized was “AMEN CORNER” and “AZALEA”. *YAWN* 

If Jeff was interested in beer, I would go online and find a book on beer, The Search for God and Guinness: A Biography of the Beer that Changed the World by Stephen Mansfield. If Jeff was stressed out about work I read, Focal Point by Brian Tracy. If Jeff wanted to make more money I read,How Rich People Think by Steven Siebold. If Jeff had doubts Christian men could make money REAL MONEY, I read Mover of Men and Mountains by R.G. LeTourneau. If Jeff was hard around the edges and having a hard time making relationships I would read, How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie. I have also read FAR MORE GOLF BOOKS than I would like to admit, SERIOUSLY – I am starting to believe I CAN PLAY GOLF ON THE PGA TOUR. I have read business books, marriage books, statistic books, sports books, and countless biographies on rich people. How many books FOR ME have I read…? Hmm….. LOL.

WOULD YOU?

Would you be willing to pick up a book, and leave it in the car door pocket so every time you got in the car you turned off the radio and instead read about Barry Bonds, Michael Jordan, Robert Kiyosaki, Donald Trump, Steve Jobs, or Bear Grylls? Would you be willing to take the time to read out loud about how certain men became men… how certain sports became sports… how certain men shaped certain sports?

WHY???

DO I REALLY NEED TO SPELL IT OUT? When I read to my husband what other successful men have done – he gets fired up inside to be successful! If instead I read to him some fantasy Cinderella love story book – he would have crashed our car long ago! I started using our drive time as our audible book time LONG before audible books became a thing, and even today I STILL READ OUT LOUD because it is MY VOICE he is hearing, and we BOTH become on page with success. As a matter of fact, we just came back from a trip to Oregon (12 hours) back and forth and with six kids in the car I STILL READ a book out loud. Golf is Not a Game of Perfect by “Doc” Rotella. After which he came back and shot the low round of his life… yeah, this is how it works.

IN CONCLUSION

I work diligently as a student practicer of Logotherapy (you can wiki it) to find meaning in ones life. Why are we here? As a married woman, this doesn’t just apply to me, it also applies to my husband. Helping my husband BECOME ALL HE WAS CREATED TO BECOME is my MISSION in life. I do this by first taking into consideration his strengths, his natural tendencies and desires, and then YES … I brain wash him and exploit these desires by conditioning his brain to EXPECT THE SUCCESS OF THE MEN HE DESIRES TO EMULATE FOR HIMSELF.

I think of, and am motivated quite often to prove this saying incorrect in our relationship… “Behind every successful man is a successful woman … and all too often, that woman is NOT his wife.”

Jeff and Jessica have studied many subjects such as business, marriage, and parenting. Jessica runs and operates wholeheartart.com. You can read their bios here: https://www.wholeheartart.com/meet-team-wha.html

So, You Married Your Opposite – Now What?

I MARRIED MY OPPOSITE

When my husband and I first met we only saw our similarities… there were SO many! From the fact our first names both started with “J” to our dreams, goals, and desires. This made the whole “courtship” process of 3 months easily do-able. When you believe you are marrying the better version of you – where is the hesitation to come from? NO WHERE!

It wasn’t until around the three year mark that I realized how opposite we were. The way we were raised: Christian vs Non-Christian, Siblings vs No Siblings, Rented House vs Purchased House… etc, etc. It was as if the “love cloud” that had made all our similar parts the only thing we could see had evaporated and what was left was two complete strangers living in the same house!

MWAH!

 

WHAT NOW?

It was upon this revelation that I was left with the decision to change things or just live miserably married. Divorce has never been an option for Jeff or I, as we decided to entirely remove it from our vocabulary (this is something I suggest all couples do). Just like in Robert Kiyosaki’s Rich Dad Poor Dad,  Jeff and I had seen Happily Married Unhappily Married with our Grandparents and Parents and we chose “Happily Married” – even if it meant we had to become students of marriage.

At the five year mark (it took a couple years of me being uncomfortable) I began a serious book reading regime on marriage alone. I took to an at home University and “home schooled” myself in the art of marriage! Here are some of the book titles I devoured:

  • The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman
  • For Better of For Best by Gary Smalley 
  • Letters to Karen on Keeping Love in Marriage by Charles W Shedd
  • Personality Plus by Florence Littauer 
  • You Can if You Think You Can by Norman Vincent Peale
  • The Greatest Miracle in the World by Og Mandino
  • Self Love by Robert Schuller

Some of these titles as you can see are not “marriage” or relationship driven, but they are internal personality and over all psychology addressing. I believe WHOLEHEARTEDLY in what Brian Tracy (author of Focal Point a Proven System to Simplify Your Life, Double Your Productivity, and Achieve Your Goals) calls the “leverage of others knowledge”. If the wheel has already been created… why not drive in their car?

Lollipops

RAINBOW LOLIPOPS

So I was reminded today (after nearly 18 years of marriage) about my husband and I and our differences (THANK GOD we are so different! He doesn’t “complete me” he makes me a BETTER me!) when I went to the bank. At the bank there is a big plastic bowl of lolipops and as our custom is, I ALWAYS pull out six of the same colored pop for our six children. ALL red, blue, etc. as to not induce strife. While I was carefully selecting ALL the pink ones (sometimes I laugh out loud at this fact alone considering the other people in line see this woman with hands full of pops) I couldn’t help but laugh because Jeff will ALWAYS pick six opposite colors when he goes to the bank! He thinks watching the kids negotiate and handle conflict is a hoot! It’s as if the challenge he watches them go through is so much better than the obvious peaceful alternative that I would present.

“I’M A BETTER ME BECAUSE HE IS OPPOSITE OF ME”

If this post today encouraged you to think about how the oppositeness of your spouse could actually be a strength instead of a weakness, consider saying to yourself “I’m a better me because he/she is the opposite of me.” Think about all the ‘scary’ things that you have been able to do since you have been married that you would have NEVER attempted if it weren’t for your “oppositeness”. Maybe you went to a fancy restaurant for the first time, tried a new food, went sky diving, or meet some new friends we really do have a lot to be thankful for in our opposing views! Think about how boring life would be if we were attracted to our exact replica! Yikes!

 

Jessica Heilman, Founder WHM

You can follow Jessica on twitter @ imwholehearted

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Jessica Heilman is the mother of six children ages 16-1, lives in San Jose, California and has been married to Jeff Heilman for nearly 18 years. You can read their marriage testimony here: We Decided to Get Married on Our First Date!