As the mother of 7 children, one word I admit I have grown fatigued of hearing over the years is “awesome.” I don’t have anything against that particular word – it’s even a bit energizing – it’s just that it brings so much promise and then falls flat when it’s used to describe something that’s really just copacetic. Then, it just feels tawdry, like Christmas decorations in February. In full disclosure, I overuse it all the time.
However, I have to admit that I am a big fan of Neil Pasricha, author of The Book of Awesome, and other related titles. He’s just so darn optimistic – but in a way that feels authentic. He highlights the moments in life that when juxtaposed with the mundane, become downright exceptional – things like popping bubble wrap, high-fiving babies, sleeping in new bedsheets, etc. It’s an excellent strategy, and one that I think could effectively be applied to marriage.
Just about every married couple has their own moments of “awesome,” that can get overshadowed by the whirlwind of family life. Just off the top of my head I can think of several in my own marriage:
- Looking out the window, and seeing that my husband has mowed a huge heart into the grass with our initials inside; ditto on his stamping it out in the snow; ditto on having the shower steam up and seeing that he has written it in soap on the glass.
- Asking my husband to print something for me, and realizing that he created a watermark to read, “SS + LS,” all over the page.
- Hearing the song Everything, by Michael Bublé and remembering the first time my husband couldn’t wait to play it for me because he said it reminded him of me.
- Having my husband walk in from the store and present me with the rarer yellow flesh watermelon or yellow raspberries, because he knows I am a produce geek.
- Being in a crowded aisle alone at Target at Christmastime, shopping (which I hate), feeling burdened, and having my husband appear at the end of the aisle, which made my heart jump.
- Hearing my phone ring, and knowing it’s my husband because he downloaded the song he said reminded him of me and made it his ringtone.
- Receiving a text from my husband during the day, bearing an acronym only we understand.
- Racing my husband every day to see who can text the other person first at a special time that has meaning to us.
- Having my husband come home and greet me with “Hi gorgeous!”
- Being in the car with my husband and hearing “our song,” on the radio.
- Listening to one of my many subscribed podcasts, realizing my husband would like a particular episode, feeling excited to share it with him, and then watching him act interested when I do.
- Watching my husband’s face right after our son scored the first touchdown at the football game or the winning 3-pointer of the basketball game.
- Standing across the room from him and seeing him wink at me.
- Planning our next couple adventure.
Sometimes, focusing on what is going well in a marriage can shift people into different behavioral patterns. Take time to think about it. Make a list. What is your marriage of awesome?
To see Neil’s AWESOME Ted Talk, click here: http://www.ted.com/talks/neil_pasricha_the_3_a_s_of_awesome?language=en#t-210655