I got married in 2008 and began our life with the good intention of living a happy and fulfilling life with a synergistic relationship. When I say synergistic relationship, I mean, creating something which alone can’t be created.
However, by observing her for a few days ( not months), I started viewing her as incapable of doing anything well, not good enough to rise in her career, despite the fact that she is, MBA and worked for five years before our marriage, because of some mistakes she might have committed of, or perhaps she couldn’t make in the first two jobs interviews. And I started micro-managing her.
Sensing my reduced confidence, she began doubting herself. She stopped giving her best, responded mechanically to my controls, and avoided decisions to do something for her betterment.
I saw her new behavior as the validation of her mediocrity and increased my control further, or tighten the screw further.
I felt hopeless, as I married her just because she was working. Initially, I tried to make things better all possible ways to no success. Then I got disappointed to the level that I lose hope of her getting better. I turned inward due to lack of interest in her. But somehow, one fine day, it crept in my mind that she has worked for five long years, that too in a good organization like Mahindra and India Infoline. And I realized my folly and decided to reverse the dynamics. Unwinding the set-up-to-fail spiral actually pays big dividends-my family gets the best from my wife and from me.
I questioned myself, how I began viewing her as incapable or not good enough? then I realized that after our marriage was fixed, we had started talking with each other. And I came to know she has been working for 5 years, her corporate experience was more than I had by two years. But her salary was less than mine. So I concluded, or better to say, categorized her as “not good enough” while dismissing contradictory evidence.
This started hurting both of us and our family as well. My wife stops giving ideas and information and asking for bits of help, she began avoiding talk with me and grew defensive. I began losing the charm of being newly married. I lost energy to attend my job sincerely. And the first time I realized how life is one indivisible whole, what happens in part of life, affects everything else in life. My reputation began suffering in my in-laws as they see me as the prime cause of their daughter’s failure. In nutshell, I can say that my entire family suffered.
HOW I REVERSED THIS DYNAMICS:
1. I took initiatives to converse with her, despite the fact that she avoids me. I stopped criticizing her for every mistake she does. I loosen my reign of control and establish an expectation- means we clarified our expectations from each other.
2. I began challenging my own perception of her. I asked “what are the facts regarding her not getting a job? “Is she really not good enough”
3. I asked my wife, to challenge my opinions, whenever she feels, that it’s undermining her credibility.
4. We began going to the park, I used affirming language, like- let’s discuss our relationship, expectations, or our role as spouse. And above all, I admitted my part intention.
5. We started agreeing on each other’s weaknesses and strengths. We use to support our assessments of each other with facts, not feelings.
6. I started digging the cause of our weaknesses. No longer we disagree on priorities. I use to say to my wife, please let me know-“how is my behavior making things worse for you?
7. We started developing good habits reading-something good every day, going to seminars. We began supporting each other even in supervision, we use to affirm our desire to improve matters.
8. We agreed to communicate more openly: “whenever you feel that. I am communicating low expectation, you please let me know immediately? I said to my wife.
Those were the days- when I use to feel that I made wrong choice-in selecting my consort. And today is the day- when sometimes people say me-ok, you are Amrendra, that Amrendra, who is the husband of Alka Singh. I am proud of her. One time- not being able to crack the job interview is now does everything- right from the administration to management, leading our enterprise(SL WisTemp Consulting) to the next level. This is what I mean when I say calibrating perception with correct principles, for better productivity, performance, excellence, effectiveness, and efficiency.