Blog #565 Fighting (in marriage or at work)

Judging/fighting for a marriage or at work!

Taking some concepts for marriage and applying them.

This article is part of a “Fighting for my marriage” – and gives seven boundaries for a good marriage – and by implication – for a good relationship.

Let’s see.

-1 Speaking negative about our spouse to others (including family members).  Let’s extend that. What about speaking negative about our boss, our co-workers.  As mentioned in yesterday’s blog, our words have meaning – and can help or hurt. Saying “My boss is an idiot”; “My boss is a jerk”; “My co-worker is an egotistical, overbearing, brute of a man”.  “My co-worker is a terrible gossip, who lies constantly, nags and is hateful”. (Or .. with spouses, “My <spouse” is a terrible gossip, who lies constantly, nags and is hateful).

First – I remember the old “rule” – if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.

Second – you have to work with this person (or persons).  If you are complaining about them, how much different are you from them?  I want to suggest that love goes a long way.

-2 Allowing others to speak negatively about our spouse.  Again, extending that – letting others speak negative about our boss, co-workers.  If this happens enough, your home (or workplace) can become a ‘toxic waste dump”. Don’t say anything, or be positive “Hey, he/she is trying as best as he/she can – give him/her a break!!”  

-3 Keeping secrets from one-another.  That might be a spouse only boundary. But, in the workplace, I know some people who hold ‘secrets’ on a project until they can ‘pop out the information’ and look like a superhero!!!  If you have a good idea – share it – don’t wait until you get all the glory. The concept of team is that everybody wins. Keeping secrets (or holding back information that might help the team) is not being a good team player.

-4 Flirting with anyone other than your spouse.

In the marriage arena, that is also toxic.  In the workplace, flirting is going to be a negative as innuendos and comments start to crop up and hurt the workplace.  The gossip will start to talk “Did you know that Tom and Jean are an ‘item’?” And, if they are, is it any business of yours (or mine) to know that.  I’ve seen many students start relationships in my class (including leading to marriage). Unless I know them well enough, I’ve learned to keep my mouth shut.  MYOB – Mind your own business!!!

-5 Paying attention to your technology that to your spouse.  In the business place, this does hit home!!! I’ve been in team meetings (and other occasions) where a person is checking their phone, maybe even playing a game (I don’t care how addictive ‘Words with Friends’ is, don’t play it in a meeting!!!).  Unless there is something vital that you can’t miss out on, put your technology away (when you are with your spouse, or in a business meeting). By something vital, I mean that your mother is in surgery and your sister said she would text when your mother got out of surgery – and you really need to know whether it went well, or you need to get an airplane ticket to Michigan for a funeral.

-6 Speaking unkindly or shouting.  For a married couple, you might need to count to ten, or take a walk around the block.  I don’t remember any (ANY) situations where yelling made it better!! In a work setting, you have to work together.  Don’t let negative emotions get in the way of teamwork and projects.

-7 Physically hurting another.  In marriage this happens – it should not happen at work (but has).  In marriages, this is the tough time when one person calls the police about domestic violence. I think it has almost come to that in our hotbed of political thought – where a partisan from one side will strike a partisan from the opposite side.  Will physical fighting solve the problem? (Or, will war between country A and country B solve the problem.)

I have written about disagreeing without being disagreeable.  It can be tough – in a marriage or in a work arrangement. Listen, listen, listen.  Talk it out – and be patient. If you can’t say anything nice – don’t say anything at all!!

What do you think?


Posted by Bruce White

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