Working With an Attitude

Do you work with your spouse or significant other?  Mardi and I have owned Freedom Cleaning since it’s inception and working side-by-side has given us a great insight into our own relationship as we grow our business. 

One thing I have learned is that Mardi is a perfectionist.  I don’t mean that in a negative way, it’s definitely a positive thing.  From spelling to the way we clean, Mardi is absolutely the quality control manager of this organization. 

I’ve also learned something about myself.  I am thin-skinned.  I cannot take criticism well.  I’m not proud of it, and I am working on it.  In the meantime, this combination tends to breed arguments. 


I won’t go into all the details but during a cleaning one day last week, there was an argument.  My thoroughness was called into question.  It followed us home and turned into one of those two-and-a-half day, “I’ll-take-the-couch” kind of arguments.  It’s important to note here that we are also in the process of doing some remodeling of our kitchen.  Part of the remodeling involves painting the ceiling. 

There is a faux beam in our kitchen which is wood (ok, it’s paneling).  There are also two light fixtures that have wood frames.  As I walked into the kitchen, about 18 hours into the argument, I see the following; the faux beam is streaked with primer, one of the two light fixtures has primer slopped all over the wood.  The second light fixture has been neatly and carefully trimmed out and looks fantastic.  There is a post-it-note on the messy fixture; “This is how you do it.”  There is also a post-it-note on the other light fixture; “This is how I do it”.

Her point was made and she was right.  Mardi is meticulous and detail oriented.  Oh, and the faux beam and the light fixtures?  After realizing that the primer was not coming off anytime soon, we thought about getting new light fixtures.  The ones we chose ended up being the wrong size.  The beam was also beyond cleaning.  The beam and the light fixtures are painted now and they look fantastic!

And the moral of the story?  You may be absolutely right, but don’t be so right that it requires you to do a lot of work to fix your example of just how right you are. I love my wife!


4 responses to “Working With an Attitude

  1. Hmmm… I love your honesty, Mike. These reminds me of my article about ” wrong and happy.” 🙂

    • Toddy I loved that article and I realize the timing is a little coincidental. What can I say? You inspire me! Truth is, I thought it was a great story and decided to right about it. Working with ones spouse can be a challenge and an amzing reward, no?

  2. Know what ya mean. Been working with mine for over 30 years now! Wouldn’t have it any other way, and it probably inspired my article. 😉

  3. That advice is applicable in almost all phases!

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