Sometimes the things that make me a good leader, make me a bad husband.
One example: Seeing the weakest links.
Something I’ve seen good leaders do is find the weakest links in whatever they’re leading and strengthen them. They look at their team, ministry, or organization, identify what most needs improvement, and then do what they can to improve it.
But even though this might be a good quality for a leader, it makes for a bad habit as a husband or dad.
I’ve found myself drawn to thinking about the one negative part of a conversation with my wife or experience with my daughter, and ignoring all the positives. I’ve caught myself mentally removing myself from a moment and all the amazing parts of it because I’ve noticed and am dwelling on something less than perfect, and started to process how it could be changed.
The way my daughter didn’t say “thank you” to the cashier at Chick Fil-A (even though she did say “hi” and “please”), the fact that my wife didn’t ask me about a meeting I had that day (even though she made me dinner and complimented my new hat), when I’m not able to watch a game I wanted to (because we’re having an awesome family day at the zoo), and so many more.
I’ve started to see it more and do my best to dismiss it, in order to focus on and enjoy the more frequent and important positives of the people in front of me.
I might be tempted to think that I need to be a strong father or good leader in my marriage so focusing on the negatives to improve things is healthy, but more often than not, I’m pretty sure I’m just missing opportunities to love the amazing qualities of my family…and then tell them about it!
There might be times when challenge is appropriate, but I’d rather default to being the kind of husband and dad who was always looking for the positives, and experiencing the present moment with full appreciation for everything it is.