This post was originally posted at: Improve My Marriage: Grass is Greener Where Watered
One of my hobbies is making little improvements to my home. Whether I am just replacing an electrical outlet or repainting an entire room, I love beautifying my home. I especially love working in my yard including taking care of my lawn.
Throughout the years I have learned that when I properly water and fertilize my lawn, it is greener and looks nicer. As I take care of it, it is also healthier. I work hard at controlling the weeds and pests that could ruin my beautiful grass.
As I put forth the effort into making my grass look nice, I often catch myself looking at the lawns of my neighbors. My grass is definitely not the greenest or healthiest on the street; in fact, it is probably relatively average for my street (not the nicest, but definitely not among the worst). If I focus too much on my neighbors' lawns, I can easily get discourgaged. I may think, "If only I had the money for higher quality grass," or, "My grass would look great if I had a professional service looking after it," etc. I get discouraged as I notice that the grass is greener on the other side of the street.
As I have worked with couples and individuals in counseling, I will often encounter the "grass is greener on the other side" syndrome. I have often heard that someone â€śpickedâ€ť the wrong person to marry. Some have said that they wish they would have married their ex-boyfriend or ex-girlfriend. I have also seen couples and individuals compare their marriages to other marriages. They will focus on the good things in otherâ€™s marriages while highlighting the negativity in their own relationship. Image: dan / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
To counter the â€śgrass is greener on the other sideâ€ť syndrome, James Marshall says, â€śIn marriage, the grass grows greener on the side of the fence you water most,â€ť (from the book The Marriage Garden).
This quote brings up a couple of principles to discuss here: 1) Perspective, and 2) Investment. Perspective.
When seeing greener grass on the other side of the fence (or street in my case), one beleives that the key to their happiness lies outside of their marriage. They focus on the good qualities of the marriages around them and tend to ignore the good qualities about their marriage.
Take some time and think about the strengths in your marriage. What does you husband do well? What positve qualities does your wife possess that strengthens your marriage? Image: photostock / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Investment. The grass grows green on the side that gets watered. The other aspect of this principle is working hard at what you do have and investing time and work into making it better. When I am working at getting my grass greener, I will make sure that it gets plenty of water and fertilizer. Similarly, the fertilizer and water of marriage can include things like trust, respect, love, compassion, and communication among others.
Take the time to make your marriage great. Work hard and invest in your marriage. Put your focus on making the grass you have greener and don't worry about the grass on the other side of the fence.