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Think on These Things

I think if you have followed me for any time that you know that I believe in positive focus, positive talking and staying far away from anything (or any one) negative.  Recently someone said to me that they believed I was setting up a false standard by telling only the positive stories of my marriage to Alpha Hubby.  They didn’t believe this was fair to people who had less than perfect relationships.

Zebra from Behind
Zebra’s Behind

Zebra puckey.  I have mentioned that I am a… um… volatile person.  Alpha Hubby is very calm (although he can blow his top if pushed to an extreme.  I think that has happened maybe twice in twenty years.

I am thinking more that this person has missed the entire point of my posts.  Even my friend Pamela at Road-to-Joy Blog who wrote a wonderful book about relationships, “How to Screw Up Your Marriage: Do-Over Tips for First-Time Failures  (fka Love Gone Viral: Couples Who Make You Wanna Puke) got the point!  Go buy her book – it is e-book format and paperback.

How to Screw Up Your Marriage
How to Screw Up Your Marriage

In her book, Chapter Five: What are you looking for? She states:  1When people think I’m making all this stuff up about my storybook marriage and they tell me to get real, it’s a little frustrating.  I’m not alone here; my friend Nan (Zat’s me!) knows what I’m talking about. She and her husband make people want to puke, too. She feels exactly as I do about this.

“I’ve ridden the drama train before,” Nan wrote to me a while ago. “So has my husband. We are striving for peace. Our life is real and not without issues, but our marriage truly is wonderful. Part of why it is wonderful is that we always look for the best in each other, and we talk nice about each other.”

2Don’t let yourself look for any negatives, not for a single second. Today is a day for gathering positive evidence. Reject critical interpretations. Banish thoughts about faults. Refuse to look for sins and omissions.

Nan reminded me that the Bible says to “Focus your thoughts on what is true, noble, righteous, pure, lovable or admirable, on some virtue or on something praiseworthy” (Philippians 4:8).

 I love some of the other translations of that scripture – whatever things have honour, are of value, whatever is fair, what is a good report; continue to think about what is good.  Think about what is true and honorable and right and pure and beautiful and respected.  Think of that which is commendable.  Fill your minds with those things that are good and that deserve praise: things that are honest, reputable, authentic.  Keep your minds on whatever is true, pure, right, holy, friendly, and proper.  Don’t ever stop thinking about what is truly worthwhile.

couple scary woman

That scripture defines our marriage.  I wasn’t good at it at first.  I’m sure sometimes he wondered what he’d gotten in to.  I always assumed he had a hidden agenda and THEN that axe murderer deep inside would show himself and prove me right.  I don’t mean he’d hit me but that he would suddenly find me – less.

He never did.  He taught me how to focus on the true, pure, honest, valuable, beautiful, admirable, noble – the GOOD in the other person – him.  To not assume he meant something bad when he said something innocent that tripped a land mine trigger in me.  His favorite line for years was, “I’m not that deep” when I’d explain what I “thought” he was thinking.

love napkin
love napkin

As we focus on the good in each other, I am always reminded what I’d read in a letter to Ann Landers wherein the woman talked about being a widow and the women who griped about their husbands’ snoring.

Link is here:,5422982

The point was:  Her husband had just passed away a few months before.  She wrote, “Whenever I hear a woman complain about her husband’s snoring… How I would love to have mine beside me snoring all night long.”

I read that back in 1985, long before I met Alpha Hubby, but I NEVER forgot it.  I made the decision right then and there that if I ever met my Knight in Shining Armour, I was going to value him, consider him someone precious to me, and protect what we had.

love never fails
love never fails

When I finally met him, lucky, blessed me, he felt the same way.  He had a heart for me and knew what was valuable.  What we have is so precious and rare we take very good care of it – WHILE LIVING NORMAL LIVES AS TWO PEOPLE WHO LIVE TOGETHER WITH STRONG PERSONALITIES AND OPINIONS.

We are human but we work very hard either not to fight in the first place or to forgive and restore quickly.  No long sleepless nights tossing and turning over a fight.

Boxing Gloves
Boxing Gloves

Yeah, yeah – I learned how much a waste of time that was in our first year of marriage.  I was so so so angry and was lying in that bed tossing and turning over our fight WHILE HE, the bum, slept the sleep of the righteous.  Or perhaps it was the exhausted.  But he never fumed half the night over a fight – so – I gave that up as a waste of time.  No one was impressed.

So to those people who think I am setting up a false standard, unobtainable for anyone, you’re wrong.  We really don’t fight much and our fights are other people’s light tiffs – totally stupid and ridiculous.  We raise our voices but usually not in anger.  We’re both pretty passionate, but in a good way.  Anger happens but it feels so awful we get over it toute de suite

couple touching
couple touching

What we do that is totally obtainable is to focus on the good in one another, the positive not the negative.  I never said it was easy.  It took me years not to allow past triggers to dictate my reactions.  His calmness helped me work through.

And, as you know, it is important to know that isn’t just ONE couple who have this.  I know there are others out there.  You have Pamela and Eric – and Nancy and her Superhero over at Too Wonderful For Me (she hasn’t posted in awhile due to a death in the family but visit her and check her other posts out).

raspberry background

So to all the naysayers out there, I say a big raspberry – BIG raspberries to you – and to quit being a zebra’s behind.  Learn to focus on the good.  So he forgot to take the garbage out – big whoop.  There are a million other things he does do for you… you’ve just forgotten to focus on them.

Start again. 


1,2Hutchins, Pamela Fagan (2012-04-29). How to Screw Up Your Marriage (FKA Love Gone Viral) (Kindle Locations 333-339, 351-352). SkipJack Publishing. Kindle Edition.

12 thoughts on “Think on These Things

  1. So, so important to focus on the positive, even in the form of little things! The hubby and I have a tradition of giving each other “gold stars” (probably from my days as a kindergarden teacher!), just a tiny way of acknowledging the good stuff the other does. Love how cute and sweet you and your hubby are, what great inspiration!

  2. I think the saddest thing about what that woman said isn’t that she focuses on the negative instead of the good in her relationship, but that she believes a mostly good one can’t exist. That the “impossible standard” isn’t real.

    I have been luckier than most. I never had to live the drama. I met my husband when I was 17 and we’ve had a very calm, very decent life together. He’s far from perfect, but he’s perfect for me. And yeah, there are tiny things I get aggravated over, and vice versa, but we recognize that the core love and respect for each other is more important.

    If someone isn’t happy in their relationship, they have the power to change it one way or another. Dissing on other people who make it work isn’t going to do that! 🙂

    Very nice post, Nan!

    1. I hadn’t looked at it that way but you’re right. That is exactly the tone of voice of her email. I LOVE what you said… “he’s far from perfect but he’s perfect for me!” That’s it, exactly.

  3. What??!! Maybe that’s why Phoenix and I get unfriended on Facebook…because they tire of seeing the feel good posts. Ironically that’s been on my today and then I read this post on positive thoughts and love about marriage and your’s specifically, Nan. I think folks just want others to come down to their level. What is it…hang on…need to click on some hearts!! Got ’em! Now where was I? Oh…misery enjoys company. Keep your feel goods always coming because we can not have enough in this sometime very turbulent world, our friend! GREAT POST!! 🙂

    1. You and your heart shooting!! So funny. So MAN. And that’s what Alpha Hubby said – “she just wants to pull you down to where she is. Ignore her.” So, I do. Mostly (smile).

  4. Nan,
    people are jealous. That’s the problem. For me, you INSPIRE and remind us that our marriage and love can be GREAT MASSIVE AMAZING… and the Sex, too.

    Xxx LOVE coming your way from Duluth. xx

    1. Yep, great, massive, amazing, AND great sex. That is what a marriage is supposed to be and is really easily done – IF one sets ones mind to it and makes it first place in their long list of things to do today. #1. Take care of my marriage.

  5. Everyday has challanges. It is up to us individually how we will handle them. You will either focus on the things that went right today or you will focus on what went wrong. You will focus on giving love or you will focus on yourself and what someone didn’t do for you. Purely all about you. Life is too short to be hurt and mad all the time. Life is so beautiful but so many people don’t see it because they are miserable with their own life. Notice her fuming was all on her and all about her and she was not enjoying the gift of life. Drama is such a life stealer.

  6. I went away for awhile and come back to a totally new look on your blog. I really like it and your white haired black dress wearing chick. And fur sure even I know your posts are honest and true. You two do have something very different and special from the norm. I’m going to go check out that lady’s book.

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