Revisit: Divorce Day

Episode #571

Are things not going well in your relationship? What’s your wife’s primary complaint about you and the relationship? What actions have you taken to address this?

Women often drop clues as they move through the marriage, you just have to notice them. Listen to her, and be a man to her, before it’s too late.

You need the proper tools to help you in the process of maintaining a healthy marriage. Relationships need courage; the courage to hear and know the truth. You may not like what you hear, but it’s important to know where you stand in the relationship…and how to improve that standing.

Build a connection with your wife, and show affection and admiration. Develop the courage to take massive and necessary action.

In this episode, we implore you to take the time to check yourself within your marriage and your relationship. Save your marriage before it’s too late.

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TRANSCRIPTION

Doug Holt  00:01

Hey guys, welcome to The Powerful Man Show, where we help married businessmen save their marriages without having to talk about it, get unstuck, and gain clarity in their lives. As I like to say, life is too short for average. I’m your host, Doug Holt, with my co-host, Tim, The Powerful Man, Matthews. Now let’s get this started.

Doug Holt  00:44

What’s going on, brother?

Tim Matthews  00:47

Very well. I feel nice and fresh and clean.

Doug Holt  00:51

I’d love it when you shower. It’s great.

Tim Matthews  00:55

Well, it is October. Fresh feeling.

Doug Holt  00:57

Yeah, absolutely. Tim’s giving me a hard time, guys, because we have friends visiting, and I had a couple of drinks late last night and am a little slower than normal this morning. But it happens when you get older, Tim.

Tim Matthews  01:13

Yeah, yeah, you drink more and recover less.

Doug Holt  01:20

Recovered less. Exactly. So, Tim, you had something you wanted to throw the table today to have a discussion about?

Tim Matthews  01:26

Yeah, so I had a meeting yesterday about this, and that’s divorce day. It’s coming up. I say it’s coming up in the sense that it’s right around the corner. And now’s the time to work on things for anyone who wants to avoid falling victim to it. And I say that because, for those of you listening that don’t know, there is actually a term coined by solicitors and lawyers for the day of the year when they get the most submissions for divorces. And weirdly enough, 80% of the submissions they get for divorces are from women. When I first heard that, I was shocked. I was shocked by it. When I first heard that divorce day was the first Monday after the holiday season, the festive period, right? This year, it falls on about the fourth of January or something we looked up yesterday. Something along those lines.

As we started to research this more last year, what became apparent was, especially in the US, you’ve got Thanksgiving, which rolls pretty swiftly into December festivities, starting with work parties and arrangements with family, and then obviously the Christmas period too, for those who celebrate it. What often happens during that four-week period, let’s say from Thanksgiving to Christmas, New Year is the women see that the men are really not there. They’re not present, they’re drinking more, they’re on the phone more, they’re more short-tempered, and they’re spending much more time together. And they’re not able to get along, even at the time of year when they see everybody around them really enjoying family time, right? And often the guys then go into work, or they’ll sneak off into the other room and check their emails or, you know, just work on a project, almost some of them say it’s because they feel kind of like a stranger in their own home at that time. Right? They’re so used to not being there that when they’re sat around the table, celebrating, they just feel like a bit of a ghost. The kids run up to the mother or the grandparents, and they kind of get ignored a little bit.

The reason why I wanted to bring this up today is for a couple of reasons. One, now is the time to do the work if you want to avoid or, like I say, falling victim to this, but two is yesterday, the enrollment team experienced three men who first spoke to us between eight to 10 weeks ago, and they had the conversation scheduled with them yesterday, and these guys have now been handed the divorce papers. At this point it’s very difficult to pull it back from that point. And this was a question that we asked during the process on this phone call.

One of the questions we always want to learn more about is, okay, what do you think might happen here if nothing changes? And most of the guys deny the fact that a divorce is on the table. They’ll say, ‘Well, you know what, Tim, I think things could get worse if they don’t change, and I can see us maybe doing a trial separation, but I don’t think we’ll get divorced; I just can’t see us doing that. We love each other; I don’t think she’d do it; I’m not going to do it. It’s not who I am. I said I’d be in this for the long haul; I’m gonna be in it for the long haul.’

What I see happening with the men is that they’ve buried their heads in the sand and almost become numb to the pain that has been building over the past several years, right? Kind of like the analogy of if you put a frog in some boiling water and you turn it up a little bit. Eventually, it’ll just boil to death; it won’t jump out. If you drop it in an actual pan that is already boiling, they jump back out, right?

Tim Matthews  06:07

One of the things that serve men so well in business is their ability to persevere, overcome obstacles and tolerate pain to a degree. Yet, when they then take that into their marriage, it hinders them because they use that to kind of negate what’s going on. Then before you know it, you went through the festive period, it’s been another bad Christmas, but you don’t expect to be handed the divorce papers come the beginning of the year. And for women, most of them do it because they want to just get the festivities out of the way. They think, ‘let’s just make sure we can be together this year as a family, and then I’ve got a whole year to figure things out, and we can figure things out for the kids for next Christmas.’ So I wanted to bring this topic to the table because I think it’s a timely conversation. Especially given the men that we’ve had conversations with the past couple of days and given the timing coming up. And obviously, you’ve always got some good insights, Doug.

Doug Holt  07:13

Yeah, you know, I’m glad you brought this to the table for several reasons. It was really interesting, Tim, when we had the meeting yesterday, it wasn’t just you and I; it was other people on the team. And one of the guys on the team said, ‘Oh my gosh, this is when things broke down for me.’ Right? He correlated the dates and said, ‘Right around this time is exactly when the other shoe dropped for me in my marriage.’ And the reason this is so important to talk about now, guys, if you’re listening to this, you know, when this is released or even later, now is the time to take action. You don’t want to be sitting there on January 4, or any day for that matter, but January 4, and to find out that what you thought was okay will push through to next month, next year, and it’ll get better.

It’s a story we often tell ourselves as men, especially that it’s going to get better. I’m just going to wait this thing out. But then divorce day happens, right? And your divorce day might be different, but divorce day can happen. And this could be your second, third, or fourth divorce. Then it’s already too late, so when we look at this as men, what can we do? We want to take action and do a temperature check on our relationship. I just actually did this with my wife this morning. As I mentioned, we have friends visiting, and often the guy will come and talk to me, sometimes the wife will come to talk to me, pull me aside talk about their relationship. And the same thing happens to my wife. And I was talking to my wife about what was going on, and then I turned to her, and I said, How are you doing? How are we doing for you? What’s going on in your world? What’s your biggest complaint to anybody else about our relationship? And it’s really interesting to get that temperature check to understand where you are in your relationship.

I remember way back in the day when my wife and I were first dating and first got married, and there were times when things weren’t going well, and I just didn’t want to get a temperature check. Right? You don’t want to know, or you’re so upset or angry or mad that you don’t want to have that conversation. And I think the lesson I’ve learned is you want to have that temperature checked sooner than later and take massive action.

Tim Matthews  09:43

Yeah, for sure. Guys that we’ve spoken to…it is such a heart-wrenching conversation to have with the man who is trying to pull his marriage back from that place of being handed divorce papers. And they’re saying things like, ‘she’s my best friend, I’ve done all this for us, I’ve built this life because I wanted to enjoy with her. It means nothing if she’s not by my side; I’d give it all up tomorrow to have her back.’ And then they go down the path of “if only.” ‘If only I were to just listen to her.’ Because often, the women have dropped little clues along the way. They’ll say, ‘this isn’t working for me. ‘Why are you doing this?’ ‘Why are you not doing that?’ And for these guys, it’s easy to see these as insignificant things. Because we show up in business just smashing through problems that seem bigger than the problems in our relationship, that when we then come home and are greeted with a little problem, or what seems like a little problem of, ‘hey, you’ve not done the dishes again’, we think, ‘do you not understand that I just crushed it in business? Why are you losing it over the dishes? Why does it matter? We can hire somebody to do the dishes. And at that moment, it’s got nothing to do with the dishes. But it’s because she can’t trust your word, not being a man of your word. You need to take massive action.

Doug Holt  11:28

Well, you want to take massive action, and your woman wants to see you taking massive action, right? She wants to see you making an effort to make a change, right? Our words are one thing. Actions are something different. There are a lot of ways you can do this. Many men would say that one of the first things they talked about when they joined the program is, ‘Wow, my wife knew I was serious when I started doing this.’ And then, of course, he starts changing, and she starts changing. And then there’s a whole cascade effect, right? Which is brilliant.

And it doesn’t just stop there, right? As I said, I’ve been doing this work for a long time. And this morning, I’m doing a temperature check. I’m checking in to see for my wife how things are not only for her but for our relationship for her. And not from a point of trying to solve it, which is very important, guys. She gave me her complaints or things that she thought could be better, and I let them go in my head, but I didn’t immediately try to solve them with her. I just went through validation, and many things we do in the Clean Slate Method and in the Live Like a King system. I used a lot of the techniques that we use in TPM during that conversation. And I think that’s incredibly important. It’s just like doing construction, right? I mean, here at my house, I built a new wall, laid the floor, and did a lot of construction. And the more tools you have in your tool belt, the easier that process is, right? It’s much easier to get things done when you know which tool to use. You know what you’re doing if you have a miter saw versus a skill saw versus a table saw. If you have all those tools in your tool belt, you can pull them out and be much more efficient. When we talk about divorce day, Tim, I think many guys just haven’t been given the tools. I was talking about that last night which is that most men just haven’t been given the tools to have a healthy marriage as a modern-day man. Who’s taught you? I bet no one sat down and taught you. If anything, you’ve probably emulated your parents.

Tim Matthews  14:20

I agree, and I struggle to buy that right now. I struggle to buy it because I am not about emulating parents; I agree. But I struggle with the idea that men don’t have the tools. I don’t think men today can use that excuse because look at the tools we give out for free. Look at what’s available on YouTube. Look at what’s available online. I understand being overwhelmed with tools, but I believe that if the guys listening to this truly want to make a change, they have the tools to do that. I get that it can be scary, and maybe they’re worried about what the wife is thinking. You know you’re listening to this podcast, and they see you digesting information. They see you listening to or reading or watching things, but then no action with it. And it’s worse than not even doing anything and not even being in the conversation in the first place.

Doug Holt  15:16

Yeah, I agree with that. What I was talking about is you go to school, right? You go to school, and you learn geometry, you’re learning history, you’re learning all of these things. Yet, where are relationships taught? No one has taught that to you. Do you have resources that you can lean on? Absolutely. Whether it be on YouTube, Stitcher, or iTunes, men listening to this podcast, wherever they are, they’re way ahead of the curve, right? You guys listening to this, you are the 1% out there because you’re trying to better yourself. But I also agree with you, though, Tim, that if you’re not taking action and you’re just digesting content, we call that educational masturbation, right? You’re getting off with this idea of change, but you’re not doing the work that’s necessary.

And that’s the hard part, right? I was talking to one of the guys in the inner circle, our highest-end mastermind group where men make a significant investment in time/resources/money and get access to our top coaches, and he sent me a message about this topic. We were talking about the idea of actually taking action and stepping to the line. The point we were talking about was courage. Courage is not when you’re not afraid. Courage, by definition, is when you’re afraid, and you fear it, and you do it anyway. That’s courage. That’s courageousness. And many people have these lions and courage posters all over their office, but courage is stepping into fear, stepping into the unknown, and doing it anyway. That could be taking action on something you hear on this podcast, in a book, or taking action by joining The Activation Method, or joining The Brotherhood or The Inner Circle.

It’s scary, right? What’s going to happen? I’m going to make an investment, and will I change? What’s going to happen here? It takes courage to take action, guys, and that’s stepping into the fear. Doing a temperature check in your relationship can take courage, right? Because you may not like what you hear. You may not like it, but maybe it’s the truth. Right? Maybe it’s the truth, and you probably need to hear it from the person you’re talking to. And I think that’s incredibly important.

Tim Matthews  17:38

I think back to the start of this conversation when you mentioned the people involved in the conversation yesterday on the team. Chris, one of the advisors, got divorce papers on divorce day. And when I told him about this, he said, Oh, my God, Ryan, reached out to us and came to us around that time, during the holiday season. I think what you said there; the temperature check is super important. The caveat here is if your wife has been telling you what’s wrong for a long time, maybe a temperature check isn’t a good idea. Because she might say, ‘Hey, have you not been listening to me for the past two years while I’ve shared how I feel?’

So anyway, the reason for this podcast isn’t to scare you into doing something. It’s just to inform you that this day exists, and it’s on the horizon. Now is the time. Now might be the time for you to start taking some risks, start taking some action, and exercise your courage, because of the next 4/5/6 weeks, leading up to Thanksgiving in the US leading up to the busier holiday season in the UK, you could start to gain some traction here. And it’s not about becoming a new man or, you know, having to change every single way you do everything. You could start with The Hidden Motives Technique from the Facebook group or The Clean Slate Method. Usually, that works better if you’ve done a couple of other things first, but the Clean Slate Method is in The Live Like a King system. Even if you just start there, wouldn’t it be great to go into the holiday season knowing that you’ve got that connection with your wife?

Being able to relax instead of feeling like a stranger at your own home over the holiday season? Instead, you can feel like your home is a sanctuary and like you’re a king. Quite frankly, you could get looked at in the way that only a king can be looked at with admiration, respect, and affection. It may sound a bit unrealistic, but that’s how many guys describe it to us. So if there’s one thing from this, Doug, I would take action. I was going to say it’s a temperature check, but I don’t think that’s it. Take some action, whether it’s The Hidden Motives or Live Like a King. If you feel like you’ve got some good connection, do the temperature check, but if you go straight in for the temperature check. It could get a slap.

Doug Holt  20:34

Yeah, I didn’t know we were going to have this conversation today, but I would say if I was in that situation, where I thought I might be divorced, and I wanted to still be married, right, then what I would do is enroll in The Activation Method or something similar. Take action in something where you’re going to get coaching, you’re going to get guidance, and you’re gonna get accountability. Now’s the time. That’s what I would do. It may sound salesy or self-serving, but that’s not my intent. Take massive action, guys, because you just don’t want to be on that other end. Just take massive action. Guys, this is the key. This is your call out. You’re here for a reason. You’re listening to this for a reason. If not, now, when?

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