Thursday, May 1, 2014

Weekly Business Meeting

At noon on Tuesday's Jade and I have a weekly scheduled business meeting.  The two of us sit down and go through the business items associated with normal household activity.  We only started this regularly scheduled meeting in response to the new missionary responsibilities but we have discovered it to be a highly valuable practice.  After seeing the benefits of meeting weekly, we started to wish we would have done this from the beginning of our marriage.  Jade and I would highly recommend this practice to every married couple! And so, here are some 'rules' on how to conduct a weekly business meeting.

Schedule It - Treat this meeting like a dentist appointment.  Make it a priority.  When we have prescheduled appointments we make sure to keep that time protected.  The weekly business meeting, within reason, should be considered a serious and protected event.  Your marriage/family is certainly more important than your teeth.

Meet No Matter How You Feel - To be honest, the last few weeks have been pretty difficult for us.  Leaving my career and preparing the house for sale are high stress challenges that bring tension to the home.  However, we have both been disciplined to meet even though our emotions or energy level preferred otherwise.  The weeks we most don't want to meet are usually the most important meetings to keep.

Follow a planned outline - Stick to a plan and avoid the temptation to let argument and conversation dominate your progress.  Go into the meeting fighting toward one another with a business mindset.  While this meeting can be therapeutic it is not marriage counseling.  Be careful to stick to the plan just as you would in a professional office setting.

Here is an example of our outline:

Metz Meeting Outline

1.   Pressing Items
2.   Fundraising (for most this would just be ‘finances’)
3.   Schedule
4.   Goals
5.   Marriage and Family
6.   "How is it with your soul?"
7.   Prayer

The Kitchen Table works just fine – There’s no need to get a babysitter or even leave the house for this.  My parents go get sweet tea at Panera Bread and meet there which works well for them.  Jade and I have enough children that leaving the house once a week would be unnecessary added stress.  Sometimes we meet on the couch.  Sometimes the kitchen table.  The point is not so much where you meet as how you meet.  Are you taking it seriously?  If so, then meet in your pajamas and enjoy a productive meeting!

Keep it to an hour – It’s tempting to let the topics go on and on.  It’s tempting to make phone calls right then or email right then.  Don’t do it!

How is it with your soul? – The most romantic thing I can do is to ask my wife about her soul.  Often we estimate the status of our spouses spiritual life by checking to see if they read the Bible, pray, enjoy worship at church or talk about God. Your soul status is much more than that.  Don’t skip over this question in your meeting.  Ask one another!  Jade and I have found that our observations of the spiritual wellbeing of each other are often nowhere near accurate. For example, last week we both read our Bibles and prayed every day but answered this question by saying we feel, "squished on every side, overwhelmed, weary." Once the question has been asked and answered then pray for each other.

Enjoy, friends! This tool has made a huge difference in one of the more stressful times in our marriage. No matter where you are at, we know this will be very helpful!

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