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Here’s a revelation for you:
Most of the time, your spouse and your children really don’t want your advice.
Is that shocking? It’s true. What they really want is for you to encourage them, believe in them, and inspire them to be their best. When we primarily do those things, we open up their hearts to receive our instruction.
And here’s the kicker: You know that great advice we want to give to them? We give it with the absolute best intentions. We really want to help our family overcome their issues and get better. And here’s another kicker: A lot of the time our advice is really good and if they would use it, it would really help them.
Our intentions are awesome. We just need a different strategy if we really want to be heard.
Start with encouragement. Make a habit of telling your family members how amazing they are. Find the good in what they are doing and talk about that a lot more than you talk about their improvement needs. Make it a little hard for them to get advice from you. Hold your tongue on the advice and don’t hold your tongue on the praise.
Here’s five words to help you remember this concept: ENCOURAGE EXTRAVAGANTLY AND CORRECT CAREFULLY.
As you adopt this approach, you will open up their heart for your influence in their lives. Over time as they increase their confidence in themselves and their trust in you, you will see them be more open to your counsel.
Hebrews 3:13 says, “But encourage one daily, as long as it is called ‘Today,’ so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.”
Try it. Watch your spouse and your kids be so much more inspired by you instead of avoiding you!