Episode 2

002 The Idea of You


July 13th, 2014

38 mins 18 secs

Your Hosts

About this Episode

Show Summary

Leslie & Laura discuss the critical difference between the idea of the person you married and the actual person you married. They also reveal how having a Dishwashing Definition of Done potentially saves you thousands of dollars; and give the first update on marriage therapy/ritual progress (hint, Leslie’s not doing All The Things).

Show Resources

Show Notes


  • We’re recording at 10:15pm, but we’re keeping our commitments, people!
  • Basically, having kids ruins all your plans.
  • Laura’s first adult conversation of the day.
  • Thunderstorms can also ruin your plans.
  • Stuff happens; you can choose to be faithful to your promises, even if everything seems. to be working against you.
  • And you can choose to have a cheerful attitude, too!

What is Marriage? Who is the Marriage Startup for?

  • Marriage = all committed, consensual relationships! If you wake up next to someone that you’ve made a “till death do us part” commitment to, it counts! Whether or not your relationship “counts” where you live, it’s totally legit to us.
  • Don’t let our traditional gender roles skew your expectations of who this show is for.
  • We’re a mixed race marriage. Leslie is Norlombian (Norwegian-Colombian).
  • Even if you are single, you can probably glean a lot from this podcast.
  • We want to hear your story, especially if it’s radically different from ours!

Main Topic – “The Idea of You”

  • “You need to be married to the person you are married to, not the idea of them.”
  • Be aware of the expectations you are bringing into your partnership.
  • Unvoiced and unmet expectations are the root of resentment
    • That goes for business relationships/partnerships too!
    • If you are in business with your spouse it’s true 2x.

  • Laura’s dad is the ultimate handy man. Her parents built the house she grew up in!

  • Leslie is not the ultimate handy man. He’s not even the second runner up handy man. He knows what a hammer is. It’s a start.

  • Leslie is not the guy to stay up late and make sure the kitchen is tidy the next morning.

    • Laura tries hard not to be resentful of this.

  • Reality is that Laura is a lot like her dad and she loves waking up to a clean house and tidy kitchen. She loves having a clean slate.

    • Laura has resented not only that Leslie doesn’t do it, but that she “has” to do it!
    • It’s been a journey to let go of that.

  • The Checklist is up in the kitchen!Hereis said checklist:

  • Leslie thinks of himself as cleaning the kitchen most nights! So what’s wrong?

  • HelloAgileScrummers! There is no shared definition of done for “Clean Kitchen!”

    • As a person who is groggy at 5am in the morning, Leslie wants a clean counter on which to make his coffee in the morning.

  • Leslie cleans, but not to Laura’s satisfaction, because there is no shared definition of “clean kitchen.”

  • This impacts the business. If the start of the day is tanked, it will potentially damage the business, how we do customer service, answer emails, do phone calls, etc…

  • Leslie commits to do the checklist for the week.

  • If you don’t openly communicate and share what “done” means it leads to false agreements about your partner.

    • “Leslie never finishes cleaning the kitchen, therefore he’s ‘half assed.’” It begins to destroy a relationship.
    • Our response is going to be colored by this false agreement.

  • Leslie knows this plays deeply into Imposter Syndrome “Amazing business face on the outside, but considered ‘half assed’ at home.”

  • If you work at home, this unhappiness over the mundane creates a depressing atmosphere that can impact everything, especially sales.

  • If Leslie isn’t careful, he starts buying into the agreement that “yes, I’m half-assed.”

  • Just acknowledge that we can’t read each other’s minds!

  • Don’t be a nag: “Get on that checklist!” (Would you want someone talking to you that way?)

  • If we were business partners, we might take personality tests to help solve these types of issues.

  • “The ramifications of not doing the dishes could be thousands and thousands of dollars.”

  • We’re pretty sure businesspersonalitytestsare going to be the next “experiment” after marriage therapy.

    • Laura “I’m a total personality test geek!”

  • Start documenting the difference between who you think you’re married to versus who you are actually married too. Do it in a kind and gracious way.

  • We want to know these criticisms so we can be better partners because we know what we create together is better than what we create apart.

  • Laura reads her “benediction” (of sorts) to Leslie:

The happiness and fulfillment of my marriage cannot rest on

my hope or idea of who Leslie should be. 

I have to relate to him.

I have to allow him to be who he is in the relationship.

Not who I want him to be, or hope he will someday be.

I have to be in relationship with Leslie in the here and now.

 Marriage Therapy, Ritual Update

  • The “Coming Home Ritual” is really working for us. It’s made a dramatic improvement in our relationship in just one week!

  • Day 1 was hard, but it got easier after that.

  • Biggest impact on Leslie is that he “knows what to do now” which has made a powerful impact on him as a father and husband.

  • Laura loves seeing Leslie head down to the river because she knows that she is almost off work! It brings a sigh of relief.

  • Laura: “Watching my partner take care of himself really impacts me.”

  • Laura gently reminds Leslie that he is supposed to leave his iPhone behind.

  • Leslie: “REASONS!”

  • Laura wants Leslie to leave his iPhone in the office for the rest of the evening.

  • Leslie commits to leaving his iPhone in the office for the ritual (not the entire evening) for the week.

  • WE KISS! WE RECORD IT! SORRY! But not really.

  • Your valiant, exhausted hosts grab a beer.

Here’s What I’m Going to do for You

  • Laura
    • Putting her iPhone down throughout the week in solidarity with Leslie during his ritual.
    • “I won’t use it as an escape.”

  • Leslie

    • Take care of Ethan, our one year old son, twice a week during lunch.

Thank you for listening! We love you; be kind to each other.

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