Here is a third installment of something that really helped our marriage.
My husband’s workplace required all of its employees to take the StrengthsFinder 2.0 test and read the book. He then insisted that I take it, too. I am not exactly sure why – I think that he felt that it would help me learn more about myself (he was under the impression that I didn’t understand myself – but that wasn’t at all true, sometimes I just told him I didn’t know why I was feeling a certain way because I knew that if I told him the real reason it would frustrate him/freak him out/make him upset, etc.).
Anyway, I obliged, begrudgingly. It didn’t tell me anything that I didn’t already know about myself, but it ended up being very helpful in our marriage. My strongest strength, I guess you would call it, is Achieving. To feel good about life, I need to feel like I am accomplishing something. My husband’s is Input. He loves to get a lot of information, but he doesn’t care if he actually accomplishes anything.
Finding this out helped him realize that when I say, I need to get out and do something – it really is a need of mine, not just a want. It also helped me realize that when he is sitting listening to podcasts of random information that isn’t necessarily useful for anything, that is something that he needs to do – he isn’t just being lazy. So I have learned to give him space to just be – while I go get something done. And he has learned to be less stressed by my constant need to be doing.
Also, I have learned a bit how to enjoy doing nothing (for short periods of time, anyway). And he has learned to accomplish a few things that I find important before he goes into pure input mode on a Saturday.
So, while you probably won’t be surprised by what your strengths are, if you are as old as we were when we took it, seeing in black and white the strengths of your partner are very helpful in understanding what makes them tick. It helps to better follow the Bible’s admonition to love, cherish and respect each other.