You Think You’re Winning but You’re Not…

This is a lesson I had to learn early in my marriage.   You see, I like to be right.  I used to take pride in knowing I was right and someone else was wrong in an argument.  If I couldn’t convince someone I knew what I was talking about, I would find other sources to confirm my point.  Then, after they finally admitted defeat, I could hold my head high knowing that I was successful yet again.  Here’s the problem:  Most people don’t like to deal with people like that – these “always right, know-it-alls”.  This is ESPECIALLY true in marriage.  

I used to do this with my wife.  If I knew I was right about something, I would go round after round with her to prove I knew exactly what I was talking about.  I wouldn’t give in, no matter how important (or unimportant) the subject.  But by always trying to prove I was right, I was actually losing out on my relationship with her.  I wasn’t showing grace.  I wasn’t giving her mercy.  I wasn’t loving her the way I should have been.  One day, I realized I needed to change the way I communicate with her or she was going to STOP communicating with me.  So, I backed off.  Amazingly, the world didn’t end when I didn’t try to always prove I was right.  In the grand scheme of most day-to-day things, it doesn’t really matter if I’m right or wrong.  If I am, fine, but not everyone needs to know it.  Who was I serving by always proving my point?  Me – that’s all.  If you’re going to foster relationships, it can’t simply be about you.  When I stopped focusing on making my point at all costs, the channel of communication immediately improved with Eve.  Our talks became much more loving and productive.  Today, on big, important issues, I let Eve know exactly how I feel (and she lets me know how she feels, too), but by dialing back my “I’m right, you’re wrong” style of making points, the quality of our relationship was taken to the next level.  I know this may not sound like rocket science, but you may be doing this right now and not even realize it. 

So, here are a couple of questions to ask yourself when proving you’re right, yet again, to your spouse…

1.  Does proving I’m right on this subject really matter in the grand scheme of things?  Many times, the answer is no.

2.  After you argued your point, ask, “Did this make my relationship with this person stronger or weaker?”  If it made it weaker, was it worth it?

Asking these two questions can serve to you well.  Believe me, I know…

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6 Responses

  1. Charlie,
    Great words of wisdom. A good lesson in
    relationship building.

    Eric

  2. So true. Thank you.

  3. I completely agree with you! If Heath and I always tried to find a winner we would lose sight of the bigger things needing our time and effort…like our marriage!

  4. I must say, Charlie – YOU’RE RIGHT!!!

    Love you, baby, and appreciate your heart to be the best husband in the world – and i appreciate your caring and loving spirit. Thanks for teaching me the true meaning of unconditional selfless love. And, most importantly, thanks for loving me as God loves His church.

  5. Charlie you’ve taught me several life lessons but this one may be the most important point of wisdom I’ve picked up from you over the years.

    I’ll never forget you telling me this a couple of years ago. It’s kept me from trying to WIN to LOSE several times.

  6. Thanks, everyone, for the comments. This subject seems to really strike a chord with a lot of folks. I enjoy reading your thoughts…

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