Figuring Out What to Keep and What to Tweak

In the last post, we talked about what it means to have a “normal marriage.”  Here’s a quick recap:

  • Everyone’s marriage is “normal”…for them.
  • There are parts of “normal” that work and should be kept.
  • There are parts of “normal” that don’t work and should be tweaked.

The key to making your normal marriage good is figuring out what parts to keep and what parts to tweak.

 To do that, you need to put your marriage on “The Scale.”  “The Scale” is a one to four scale that will help you and your spouse know what to keep and what to tweak in marriage. “The Scale” looks like this…

Normal Marriage Slides.008

Here’s how you can use this scale to figure out what to keep and what to tweak in your normal marriage.

  • Click here to get a PDF rating sheet
  • Print two copies of the PDF (one for you and one for your spouse.)
  • Both of you use the scale to rate various areas of your marriage; recreation, communication, sex, fun, money, conflict resolution, kids, in-laws, etc.  (Do this separately.)
  • When you’ve both finished your lists, go out to dinner.
  • During dinner, each of you share things you rated as a 4.  Celebrate these things and talk about why they are a 4 for you.
  • After you’ve both shared your 4’s, then begin to share the things you rated as a 3.  Talk about what would change them from a 3 to a 4.
  • Finally, each of you talk about one of the 3’s on your spouse’s list that you’re going to try to tweak and make better.

That’s it!  Don’t worry about anything lower on the scale at this time.  Just focus on the 3’s and 4’s.

This little scale can help you know what to keep and what to tweak to make your normal marriage even better than it is.

BUT BE CAREFUL!  Couples often make the mistake of believing that a 1 or a 2 in parts of their marriage means the entire marriage must be a 1 or 2.  Not true.  You can have some areas of marriage that rate low on the scale and still have a good marriage.  Think of it this way…if you don’t like the carpet in your house, that doesn’t mean the whole house should be tore down.  It just means you need to do something about the carpet.  This scale is not meant to tear down your marriage, but rather to help you determine the things you need to keep, as well as the things you need to tweak.

And one last thing about the scale…have fun with it.

Leave a comment and tell us how this scale worked for you.

Copyright © 2014 Bret Legg