Marriage is a rollercoaster. It provides happiness and escape from everyday life. It occasionally comes with a unique set of trials. And it is the perfect place to develop and hone leadership abilities.
This is because leadership and marriage have something in common – a partnership. One spouse can’t have a healthy marriage without the help of their partner. Similarly, leadership involves teamwork and cooperation in order to be successful.
Leadership can be used on various occasions throughout life. In marriage, business, or even simply coaching a sports team. Marriage impacts how a leader speaks to their team. It sets the tone for how much trust, consideration, and communication there is in interpersonal relationships.
Here are 7 ways marriage equips you to be a strong leader in your life.
In a healthy marriage, both partners learn how to listen to one another. Couples are happier when they feel they can speak their mind and that their partner is hearing them.
Partners must be empathetic when they listen. They pay attention to what emotion is coming forward and react accordingly. Part of listening also means not interrupting or overreacting, even when they feel like their partner is completely wrong or off-base about certain claims.
These positive qualities of listening are essential for a strong marriage. They are also helpful in developing good leadership habits.
Leaders must listen to their teams concerns and comments. They must be able to hear criticism without getting upset and show their team the respect of being uninterrupted. This will ultimately make the team stronger and more united.
The Australian Institute of Family Studies discusses eight characteristics of long-married couples. The long-term study on marriage found that some of the most important qualities in a lasting relationship are adaptability, enjoying each other’s company, and a balance of power.
This balance of power, or teamwork, is the cornerstone of a healthy marriage.
The study goes on to have partners cite reasons why they believe their marriages have been successful. Among the top reasons listed were agreement on goals and aims, treating a partner as a best friend, and being committed to making the marriage work.
Leaders must also be able to appreciate teamwork. Ego has no place in a team environment. It is only with the help and support of others that a leader is able to lead effectively.
Communication is the backbone of any good relationship. Couples communicate to get to know one another better. They also talk when they need comfort, forgiveness or fun. But, communicating is more than just talking.
Partners must be honest with one another about their thoughts and feelings. Communicating effectively means talking about a problem instead of attacking your spouse. It involves active listening and empathy.
Healthy communication can help resolve arguments and prevent misunderstandings from happening.
These are vital skills for those in positions of leadership. A leader must be able to understand their team, clients, and colleagues. Communicating will help make tasks and personal relationships a breeze.
Nobody gets married and then gets crowned the best husband/wife in the world the very next day. Learning about a partner takes time and patience. Couples must put in the effort to learn how to make their marriage work.
Partners should never feel too embarrassed to learn more about their spouse. They need to ask questions, make time for one another, and communicate regularly.
Leaders also learn to hone their craft. They learn about their team. They learn about their own strengths and weaknesses. And they look for opportunities to continue to grow and get better.
Nobody ever stops learning. Not married couples and not leaders.
Couples who are truly in love know the value of sharing their successes and celebrating each other’s victories.
Studies show that couples who celebrate successes together are more likely to associate their relationship with happiness and well-being. Couples who did not share their triumphs together were commonly quotes as relating their relationship as poor.
Positive emotional exchanges are an important and sometimes overlooked aspect of a healthy marriage. Partners love and appreciate when their spouse shows appreciation for their work and celebrates them achieving their goals.
Leaders should also celebrate the success of their team. Doing so creates personal connections and raises team morale.
Marriage is a wild ride that is full of ups and downs for every couple out there. There are times when being married will feel like winning the lottery every day. There will also be times where a husband or wife will question why walking down the aisle ever seemed like a good idea.
But those who are true to their marriage vows have one undeniable leadership skill. They never give up.
Couples who love each other work through their problems and vow to stay together through thick and thin. They address problems and talk to each other in order to keep their bond strong. Nothing will stand in the way of their marriage being a success.
Leaders have this same drive and passion when it comes to making their goals a reality.
A married couple is deeply in-tune with one another. This connection allows them to realize when something seems amiss in the relationship.
A leader must be able to follow their gut instincts. They must know when something seems off about their team. They should have a firm grasp on their goals and be attuned to their gut instincts. This will help them re-adjust personal relationships and goals for the greater good.
Many lessons learned through marriage can be applied to one’s personal and professional life. Teamwork is essential both in marriage and in running a business. It’s equally as important to know the strengths of yourself and your partner. Yes, marriage is the perfect place to learn such valuable leadership skills.
Sylvia Smith is a relationship expert with years of experience in training and helping couples. She has helped countless individuals and organizations around the world, offering effective and efficient solutions for healthy and successful relationships. Her mission is to provide inspiration, support and empowerment to everyone on their journey to a great marriage. She is a featured writer for Marriage.com, a reliable resource to support healthy, happy marriages.