(Part 3 in a 3-Part Series)
Leadership Starts at Home
A man wants to be respected by a wife who also encourages him as he steps out in leadership. A wife wants a stronger leader who rules with a soft heart and provides for her basic needs of security, affection, communication, and leadership (Evans, 2012). When asked, most women say they wished their husbands were stronger leaders of their families. Marriage: Why Wives Need Husbands Who Lead and Marriage: Why Some Husbands Fail to Lead, shed light on the importance of leadership and the underlying dynamics that result in poor leadership.
Now more than ever, wives and children need strong leadership from their husbands and fathers. Society and new cultural norms are heavily influencing families’ health and stability as well as redefining leadership in ways that are deviating from God’s truth and what wives need. For men dedicated to grow their leadership on the home front, there are several steps they can take to move the leadership needle farther right.
Steps Husbands Can Take to Increase Their Leadership
Depending on where a husband’s abilities reside on the leadership continuum and the strongholds that are affecting his leadership, he may need to make changes in several areas. From my experience, many husbands struggle with putting pride aside their pride and admitting they need to work on leadership. However, growth in a husband’s leadership not only benefits his family but also the husband realizes greater self-control and self-confidence that come with his new-found leadership behaviors.
If you are a husband open to improving your leadership, you may consider the following:
- Be open in how you define leadership—research, discuss, and pray about it. The world communicates one way, but is it God’s way?
- Get real with your leadership style—ask your wife and trusted friends how they’d describe your leadership style. Humans are poor judges of their own behaviors, because they evaluate them through their own filters/lenses.
- Seek help to heal past hurts that interfere with your leadership—consider therapy if needed. It’s difficult to grow and move forward when an emotional wound needs immediate attention.
- Recognize the problems within your family—every family is dysfunctional; it’s only a matter of degree. What dysfunctions are attributable to your existing leadership behaviors and decisions?
- Take responsibility for your behavior—apologize—say you’re sorry when you’re wrong as it shows strength not weakness. Everyone makes mistakes and needs to be accountable.
- Get vulnerable with your wife—talk openly and honestly with your life partner. Share your struggles and challenges. Ask your wife for support in ways that are helpful for you.
- Forgive people—lead with a soft heart.
- Pray—seek God’s guidance for wisdom, truth, and discernment.
- Seek feedback after making leadership changes—leadership improvement only counts when others see and feel the change.
- Get a coach—define and work toward goals and behaviors that increase leadership. Everyone may not need a therapist, but everyone can benefit from a coach.
Evans (2012) says the best leaders are husbands, who put their wives above all else, communicate admiration, love, are faithful, show non-sexual affection, and are dedicated to provide for their families. Without a doubt, wives appreciate husbands who are vulnerable and committed to work on leadership by putting words into action.
Evans, J. (2012) Marriage on the Rock: God’s Design for Your Dream Marriage. Dallas, TX: MarriageToday
About the Author: Sandra Dillon is a professional coach with an extensive background in leadership and premarital/marriage coaching. She coaches individuals and couples as well as designs and facilitates workshops. She has a passion to help people be the best versions of themselves. You can learn more about Sandra by visiting her website at www.shinecrossingsministry.com.