Our Anniversary isn’t Until September so I’m not Trying to Curry Favors

When I mention to people that my family has held a monthly meeting for twenty years and an annual one for that long as well, they are amazed.
Of course, because it is such an integral part of our life, it feels natural. In fact it would be detrimental to our relationship to do away with these meetings.

You see, for us, these meetings have been like a glue keeping us connected to each other, aware of our independent lives as well as our unified one, and appreciative of what each wants to accomplish, what we’re doing to get there, what’s in the way, how we could use support or encouragement as well as doing this for us as a unit.

During the rough and I mean really tough times in our marriage, the fact that we have had these meetings has been a huge reason for our success. Let me explain.

Without going into the weeds, let me suffice it to say that we have had two brushes with that “D” word-divorce. They have been traumatic and led to critical crossroads. Both of us have believed that if we didn’t already have a solid and foundation of high and honoring communication, we’d be long gone. IT would be the easier way, our bond would not have been strong enough to even talk about as thoroughly as we did.

How did we come upon these tremendous meetings? In the mid-1990s, I came home with an idea. I said to my husband that I thought business plans, when they’re done right, are a great instrument. They provide purpose. They provide direction. They provide the framework for accountability and measurability. They provide an opportunity for growth and development. In small organizations they are critical to success. Why don’t families incorporate something like this?

Of course, my husband did not have the same enthusiasm about the idea initially, as I did. However, he was willing to join me in an experiment.

Suffice it to say, twenty years later, we are still holding our meetings because we find them relevant and a key part to staying connected, honoring each other, to hearing what each other wants to do and adding support, encouragement, and reality checks.

The meetings remind us of what our individual and united purpose is so that we can express what is truly important to us in a life that’s full of tasks and one thing after another.

The way we structure our meetings we allow ourselves the space to celebrate accomplishments an d question untended objectives. We listen to and talk about our individual objectives and results of actions. We separate and include our combined objectives deciding who will take the leadership role and moving these forward.

These meetings are instrumental to our marriage and life together. I’m saying this and our anniversary isn’t until September.

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