In my previous post, I talked about not holding onto mistakes you have made, or mistakes your spouse has made — Basically letting go of grudges you have with yourself or your spouse. Since avoiding grudges is a topic that seems to have many webs stemming from it, I wanted to elaborate on one idea right now that can be very helpful in moving forward from mistakes made in marriage: Looking for the good in the bad.
Not Every mistake is unfortunate
It’s important to remember that not all of the series of events that happen because of a mistake are unfortunate. I try to find a lesson learned in every tiff or bad day in our marriage. Sometimes I don’t even have to look hard to find one! It can be simple or more in-depth. If I said something about a subject that was unknowingly sensitive to my spouse and therefore hurt them, I could turn that into learning something new about my spouse that prevents me from doing that again in the future. Another learning situation: “Even though I didn’t like hearing it, I’m glad my spouse told me I have been complaining a lot lately because I don’t want to be a negative influence on them every day. Now I can work on looking at the positive in this situation and maybe it will lift up my spouse.”
Of course there are larger offenses that we truly do wish they never happened, but even the most difficult of situations can have a silver lining. I believe that if we want to stay with our marriage, looking at the bright side of bad situations is the only option. I also believe that every mistake we make can improve and strengthen our marriage in the long run, if we let it.
Though it doesn’t always work out this way, I’ll hear many stories of couples who experienced cheating in their marriage, and they come out of it with so much strength and unity. That’s such a hard thing to experience but dealing with the feelings, and forgiving helped increase their love ten times what it was before!
The Highs and lows
I think couples who experience adversity from wrongs done to each other know the difference between highs and lows much better. They get the opportunity to more fully appreciate the highs in marriage, and when lows happen, they might be better experienced to handle it and move forward quicker. We have to know the bitter in order to recognize the sweet. It’s inevitable that we will experience that in our marriage because we will inevitably make mistakes. Mistakes are the inevitable storms our marriages will face.
I know it’s so hard to look at the positive when you are right in the middle of a worrisome and confusing storm. So don’t try and look at the positive right then, try and find the positive when the storm clears… because it will. Every storm has to pass, and though it comes with an aftermath, we get to choose what we do about it. So choose to look for the good. Choose to look for the lesson to be learned. Choose to look for how this storm drew your relationship closer. Choose to keep your eye on the bright side.