Love that stands the test of time

Paul, Pipefitter for a construction firm that provides mechanical services to commercial facilities based in Vancouver, WA told Session 6B of the Leadership Development Lab™:

“About 10 years ago, my oldest brother (out of 11 siblings) decided his marriage was not enough for him, so he looked for happiness elsewhere leaving behind five beautiful children. The youngest wasn’t even a year old and the oldest had just turned seven. This shocked everyone in our family! He was the one everyone looked up to and frankly, no-one saw it coming. The pain that his wife and kids endured throughout this process was horrible. It’s something I wouldn’t wish upon anyone.

“So, when we were tasked with the pearl assignment, choose a person to improve our relationship with, I had no hesitation. I had to pick my wife. It’s not that we have a bad relationship, I was just so broken from what my sister-in-law and her kids had gone through. I wanted to do everything in my power to prevent this from ever happening to my family.

“First, I looked at the good things I had written down about my pearl, ‘kindness, encouraging, always loving, and supportive.’ After looking at them, I decided I needed to acknowledge those good things for myself and give them back in return. I knew those things made me happy, so why wouldn’t it make my wife happy, too? As hard as it was, I began to play myself down – Leadership Principle #7 – and reverse the good things my wife was doing for me, providing encouraging, loving support back to her.

“Secondly, we both went online and did one of those personality profiles to determine what your ‘love language’ is. I really did want to see things from her point of view. Sure enough, just as I thought, Suzie’s love language was quality time. I gotta tell you, that was one of the hardest things to do especially since I’ve been working long shifts at work. I just wanted to come home, shower and go to bed. Instead, I sat down with her, had some hot tea, and gave her my undivided attention. Let me tell you, it worked! She even confessed that she thought I was different and that she felt our relationship grow stronger. After I did just these few things, I can surely say that my pearl was, is and forever will be a success!

“The lesson I learned from this experience is showing a fresh, new, genuine interest in my wife has brought a new richness into my life.

“The action I call you to take is to pursue your relationship dreams, make time for those you love.

“The benefit you will gain is a valentine for life.”

True love begins when nothing is looked for in return.
 – Antoine De Saint-Exupery

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