Becoming an Emotionally Healthy Wife
We place many expectations into that one little word, great. However, re-defining what makes a ‘great’ wife would serve marriages well. Being a ‘great’ wife begins when we are emotionally healthy ourselves.
As wive, we often busy ourselves caring for our husband and children. Often, caring for others overshadows the need to care for ourselves.
Friends, I articulate the following words to you from a place of brokenness and healing myself. I have been the wife who did not take care of herself. I learned, in a most challenging way, the importance of caring for my emotional well being.
Here are three ways to become an emotionally healthy wife:
Practice feeling your emotions.
When you are busy caring for others, you tend to ignore your feelings. Unfortunately, this isn’t a fix; it only complicates being emotionally healthy. Take time each day to focus on your emotions. Have you been sad, angry, or frustrated? What about happy, excited, or extremely grateful? Take a few moments to share these emotions with your spouse.
It’s okay for it to feel awkward. I know you may have not done this much in your marriage, but if you are persistent in sharing all your emotions with your spouse, not only your anger and frustration, it will eventually become a time you treasure, and the awkwardness will vanish.
No is such a hard word to say when you feel the need to volunteer. Your self-worth is not dependent on what you DO. Your self-worth comes from your identity in Christ. If you know Jesus and are a child of His, that is your identity.
If you don’t know Jesus, then I would encourage you to reach out to a local pastor or email us here at A Wife Like Me, and we would love to share Jesus with you. Your relationship with Jesus determines your self-worth.
The next time the temptation to place self-imposed requirements on yourself to boost your self-confidence or popularity arises, say no and remember that who you ARE determines your worth, not what you DO.
Do something fun. It seems like there is never time to take for fun. Your home, your family, your commitments all seem to be your top priority. However, each month, I’m asking that you plan something fun. You can do it by yourself, or you can invite a few girlfriends along. Taking time for fun helps bring an emotional healing into your life.
Sit down. Sitting down allows your body to have rest amid the chaos of life. Take time to read a book, complete a craft project, learn a new hobby, watch your favorite television show, etc. Find something that you can do while sitting, which will allow your body a little rest. Your body doesn’t have to be in perpetual movement. A little quiet time will do your body and mind good.
If I could write a letter to myself several years ago from where I am now, I would have told her the things that I’m going to share with you. It is my heart’s desire that before you reach the burned-out, worn-down, exhausted-from-all-the-things, unable-to-function place, you will read this letter and allow it to penetrate your heart.
I know you are striving to be an amazing wife. Washing dishes, picking up clutter, sweeping floors, folding laundry consume much of your time every day. The tears you shed and the forgiveness you graciously offer is often unnoticed. Loving others extravagantly is a gift of yours, but it is leading you to burn out. Volunteering at every opportunity to build your self-confidence is exhausting. I see you, and I see something about you that you don’t see yet.
To be a ‘great’ wife, who is also emotionally healthy, you must take time to care for yourself. I know it seems contrary to what the world teaches. However, skipping the care and keeping of you is not an option; it is a necessity.
I know it feels wrong to care for yourself. I’m asking you to trust my wisdom. When you are emotionally healthy, it allows the space in your heart to be a ‘great’ wife.
There are so many opportunities for growth in your life when you take time to care for yourself. You’re going to be amazed and awed at what God does in your life when you choose to take care of you.
Wife Step: Choose a step you need to focus on to bring emotional health into your life.
Karen lives in Madison, Alabama with her husband and three children. Karen has served as Preschool and Children’s Pastor and has been involved in women’s ministry for many years leading small groups, making hospital visits, organizing retreats, and encouraging the hearts of women. Karen now blogs at Glimpses of Faith and Struggles. What started out as a way to communicate medical facts has become a place where Karen uses life experiences to encourage others in their life journey. When she’s not busy caring for her family or writing, you might find her cooking or crafting.