Skip to main content

Healthy Marriages Avoid the Emotional Greenhouse Effect



At work we've been watching a series of videos aimed at developing within us truck dispatchers the skills we need to build strong relationships with our guys out on the highways driving trucks. One thing the video instructor said has really stuck with me because I feel like it has applications for relationships far beyond the bounds of trucking. The instructor used the illustration of a greenhouse to describe what it is like for drivers dealing with problems when they are out on the road. He said the cab of a truck acts like an emotional greenhouse that heats up real fast and makes little things turn into big ones quickly.

Immediately I thought of the marriage relationship. In strong marriages little things are dealt with quickly before they can turn into big things. Forgiveness is given, offenses are overlooked, intentions are not questioned, and grace flows freely between each partner. In struggling marriages all the opposites exist. Little things aren't dealt with and they become big things, fast. Forgiveness is withheld, offenses lead to bitterness, intentions are questioned with the worst always being assumed, and grace is nonexistent. The emotional greenhouse effect takes places and things that should be small become big, quickly. And if this persists, the relationship is destined for trouble.

In trucking communication and honesty are the keys to successful relationships between dispatchers and truckers. The drivers need to be able to ask questions and get honest answers. Both dispatchers and drivers need to be able to trust one another and believe that each party is doing everything they can to contribute to the relationship in a way that is mutually beneficial to each party. These same principles are without a doubt essential to having a happy, endearing and enduring marriage. Both partners must be humble enough to lay aside their own desires, concerns and rights for the betterment of the marriage.  Then, when these attitudes become essential parts of the marriage foundation, the effects of the emotional greenhouse are avoided and the marriage will be stronger and healthier.
Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

5 Reasons I Won't Let My Kids Wear Clothes with Skulls on Them

Yesterday I threw out a poll question on my Facebook and Twitter pages.  The poll question asked, "Should Christians wear attire with skulls on it?"  I received some great comments from people with a variety of opinions.  You can read the comments on my timeline from 8/8/13.

My opinion is that Christians should not wear clothes with skulls on them.

I don't have one specific Bible verse that I can use to prove my point.  Jesus never said, "Thou shalt not wear clothes with skulls."  I do however think there are number of conclusions that can be drawn from Scripture that support my opinion.

1.  Jesus does care about the clothes we wear.
I don't believe God's people are free to wear whatever they want.  From the Old Testament all the way through the New Testament you can find Biblical language related to clothes.  There are laws in Leviticus about clothes.  God instructed the OT priests on what to wear don't believe God's people are free to wear wh…

How Stephanie and I Celebrated 15 Years of Marriage

Yesterday Stephanie and I celebrated 15 years of marriage! 
To kick off the festivities, on Wednesday afternoon Stephanie bought a new car from Harry Browns in Faribault. She said good goodbye to the minivan and bought a 2014 Dodge Journey. She picked out a great new vehicle and her dad Ralph channeled his inner New Yorker to haggle us a great price.
We started the day Thursday driving to St. Peter to pick up Isabelle from the "Gustie" Basketball and Leadership camp. She spent 4 days there learning, practicing and having a blast. We celebrated together as a family with some Godfather's Pizza!
After getting back to Northfield I dropped the kids off at some friend's houses so Stephanie and I could be alone together. Having great friends who help with the kids is such a blessing. 
Stephanie had the idea that we should get tattoos together. She didn't have to work hard to convince me! After asking for recommendations on Facebook we decided to check out  Guns and Nee…

How to Make an ISTJ Calm and Happy

When it is time to write a sermon I have found it is most effective for me to get out of the house and go to a coffee shop.  My mind is clearer and my focus is sharper there.  I am usually more productive.

The increase in output may be because, as pastor and author Mark Batterson often says, "change of place + change of pace = change in perspective."  However, I think something else is influencing me.  When I am out of my house I am not distracted by messes, dishes, house chores, or clutter; my mind is completely free to focus on the task I want to accomplish.

 In addition to Batterson's creativity axiom, here are a couple little formulas that I've found hold true for me:

Cleanliness = Creativity and Calmness.
Organized home = Organized mind.

Simply put, I function best when my environment feels under control.  This feeling of control comes in many different forms.  I feel like things are under control when my surroundings are clean and organized.  I feel like thin…