Sometimes I assume the worst about my husband without having all the details, which never ends well.
I make up my mind as to why he’s running late or why he forgot and get mad without giving him a chance to explain.
It’s a huge flaw. I’ll admit. But, am I alone in this?
How many times do you choose to assume the worst, causing drama and making yourself look stupid?
Making assumptions has a high probability of causing conflict unless you choose to assume the best. When I assume the best, I’m more patient, thoughtful and much more likely to extend grace.
Being falsely accused stinks.
Here’s how I know.
He might as well said, “She stole my cell phone!”
A guy in Walmart assumed I stole his cell phone. He checked out in line ahead of me. He went to his car but stormed back into the store a few minutes later, declaring someone had stolen his cell phone. He caused quite a scene by threatening to call the police, if his phone didn’t show up.
I wasn’t sure how someone could’ve stolen his phone between the cash register and his car, but I visually perused the conveyer belt to make sure it hadn’t fallen or I’d accidentally picked it up. But when our eyes met, I knew without a doubt he thought I’d stolen his cell phone.
The store manager tried to calm him down and encouraged him to check his pockets and shopping cart to make sure he hadn’t overlooked it. He refused and declared again loudly while staring at me that someone had stolen his phone, and he was calling the police.
Without any evidence, he’d already made up his mind, I’d stolen his phone.
I’m embarrassed to admit, I can be like that with my husband sometimes.
I assume I know why he’s late or why he forgot without having so much as a single detail. I’ve already decided what happened or what he was thinking and act on it without considering any other explanation.
I thought that guy in Walmart had a lot of nerve. And he did.
But so do I.
The “Walmart Incident” should always prompt me to assume the best of my husband. And I should assume the best because he’s a good guy who’s normally considerate of my feelings and wants to make me happy.
But it doesn’t. Sometimes I’m like the guy in Walmart. I don’t want to consider any other explanation because I’ve already made up my mind.
The scenario does remind me I get to choose my perspective on a situation. I can choose to assume the best. Or I can choose to assume the worst and risk conflict.
It turns out, the guy’s phone was in his shopping cart. In his hysteria, he’d overlooked it. If he’d assumed he misplaced it instead of someone stole it, he might’ve found it on his own. He could’ve avoided upsetting everyone and looking stupid.
How many times in my single mindedness do I assume the worst?
The next time you’re about to go down the road of assumption, slow down, consider other options or wait for clarification.
When I assume the best, I create harmony and avoid conflict. I avoid looking stupid, and I avoid upsetting myself and my husband.
If you assume and later find out you were wrong, apologize. An apology will go a long way toward making things right.
But save yourself the trouble by starting out assuming the best.
Need skills to build intimacy?
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Also known as the Not So Excellent Wife, Sheila Qualls understands how tiring a tough marriage can be.
She went from the brink of divorce to having a thriving marriage by translating timeless truths into practical skills. She’s helped women just like you turn their men into the husbands they want.
She and her husband Kendall live in Minnesota with their five children and their Black Lab, Largo.
In addition to coaching, Sheila is a member of the MOPS Speaker Network. Her work has been featured on the MOPS Blog, The Upper Room, Grown and Flown, Scary Mommy, Beliefnet, Candidly Christian, Crosswalk.com, The Mighty and on various other sites on the Internet.