Nov 112014 6 Responses

Five Ways Hunting Can Make You a Better Husband

I’m not a hunter. I’ve long said hunting combines three things I try to avoid—early mornings, the cold, and death. Yet there are few things which can teach a man to be a better husband than hunting. (See: Funny Friday–On Hunting)

If more men would approach their marriages the way they approach hunting, they would have happier marriages (and probably get to do more hunting).

Here are 5 elements of smart hunting which also characterize smart husbands:

1. Education. If I had all the passion in the world to go hunting tomorrow, I would not be successful. Why? Because I wouldn’t know what I was doing. Good hunting requires education. A hunter has to study the prey. They have to understand what motivates them and moves them in order to lure them into the place of the kill. (See: The Most Important Marriage Advice I Could Ever Give)

The same is true for marriage. Husbands (and wives) do not naturally know how to be a good spouse. No matter how much desire one has, without education they will not be successful. Husbands must study their wives to understand them. What motivates and moves your wife? What are her most important desires? What does she need the most from you? What are the things which could drive her away?

2. Preparation. I’m not aware of a single serious hunter who wakes up on the morning of a hunt without a plan of where they will go and what they will do. Half the fun of hunting appears to be the preparation for the hunt. They scout, scheme, and discuss. They call their friends and search for ideas. They are open to every tip or suggestion. (See: Love Your Friends, Don’t Listen to Them)

A good marriage requires a similar practice. It takes forethought, consideration, and planning. It helps to consult others (the right others and not your buddies who have worse relationships than you). Find someone who knows what they are doing and learn from them. Read a book, go to a conference, and do the work necessary to have a good marriage.

3. Patience. There is no such thing as a good hunter who is impatient. Every great hunter has the ability to ignore a thousand distractions and wait for just the right moment when their target is in their site. Patience is a requirement for hunting. (See: We Are in This for the Long Haul)

And so it is with marriage. Love is patient. You can’t be impatient and a good spouse at the same time. A good marriage takes time. It can’t happen quickly and it requires patience for one another and oneself. If you are patient in the woods, but not in your house, something is wrong. It’s not an inability; it’s a choice.

4. Action. Hunting is a sport. It’s an endeavor which combines mental skill with physical ability. It cannot be accomplished passively. While there are moments without action, those moments are intentional and important to the process. Hunting in an activity, the lazy need not attempt the sport. (See: Marry a Partner, Not a Child)

Marriage is not a sport, but it is an activity. Success is only found in action. What are you doing to make your marriage work? Are you hoping things improve but failing to do anything which leads to improvement? Far too many men are apathetic in their relationships. Not knowing what to do, they do nothing. This will never lead to success. Men were created to act. Good actions will lead to a good marriage.

5. Celebration. Do you notice all the pictures of dead deer on your Facebook newsfeed during hunting season? When a person puts that much effort into an accomplishment, they are quick to announce their success. They can’t help but talk about what happened, tell the story, and show the pictures.

A good marriage should be celebrated. If you are working hard, taking the time, making the effort, and experiencing some success, you can’t help but talk about your wife, tell the good stories, and brag on her and to her. Celebrating the good moments in marriage will help a couple endure the bad moments. (See: Every Marriage Lives Between Two Rings)

Men are more capable than they realize. Being a good husband is possible, but it isn’t easy. Yet if a man can become a good hunter, he can become a good husband. It’s easier if you grew up with a good role model, were taught the right ways, and learned from an early age the tricks of the trade. Yet even if that didn’t happen, all the skills required to be a good husband can be learned.

If you consider yourself a good hunter, I wonder, are you a good husband? If not, why not? If you have done the work to excel in hunting, why are you not doing the work to excel at home?

If you are a good hunter but a bad spouse, at least be willing to admit one thing—you are choosing to be a bad husband. After admitting it, repent of it, and change.

If you are married to a good hunter who is also a good husband, thank him and send him to the woods—he might not only have fun, he might also be reminded of his need to study and pursue you.

6 Responses to Five Ways Hunting Can Make You a Better Husband

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