6 Sure-Fire Ways to Improve Your Relationship
Relationships are a team sport. Do you play well with others?
Here are six suggestions for improving your relationship.
1. See Your Partner as the Person She Desires to Be
When we partner, we long for our partners to see us as the person we want to be - not always as the person we are! Because we are all a work in progress, one of the greatest gifts we can give our partner is to 1) know the person that she longs to be - in detail, and, 2) hold the vision for her until she becomes that person. This requires that you respond to her as if she is already the person who possesses the characteristics and traits that she desires to possess. Discover not only who she is, discover who she longs to be.
2. Do What Works: It's About Equity, Not Fairness
View your success in life as a team effort. Focus on what is equitable, rather than what is fair. Instead, each partner believes that his needs and his best interest will be met by focusing on self-care as well as the needs the relationship. Teamwork involves doing what is best for the relationship (the team) regardless of what is "fair" or whose turn it is. If you were playing a game of ping pong, you would not refuse to return the ball because the last three it crossed the net it came to you instead of your teammate, would you? No. You do the next right thing for the relationship with the belief that in the end you will benefit from your investment in your relationship.
3. Know Your Partner's Strengths and Value Them
On any team, be it sporting, professional, academic, spiritual or other, each participant brings different strengths and abilities. Knowing what each person has to offer and highlighting those skills strengthens the team. Relationships are an intricate combination of many various strengths and challenges. We must be willing to seek out our partner's strengths and offer each other opportunities to shine and feel valued.
4. Focus on Outcome Not Ego: Would you rather be right, or in love?
Being in a relationship is an act of vulnerability. Our ego is invested in being "right" and having things "our way" instead of doing what works. There are times when we have to put our ego on a shelf and simply figure out the answer to: "What's it going to take to make this work?"
5. Our Way, Not My Way
The question in healthy relationships is never whether or not our needs will be met - the question is always, "how" are they going to be met? To insure that both partners get their needs (notice I am not saying "wants") met in their relationship it will require teamwork, negotiation and at times compromise. When you focus on "our" way, often you find a better way than "my" way.
6. Always Remain on the Same Side of the Court
A lifetime partnership offers hope that your forever guy, or your forever gal, is going to have your back from now until the end. To randomly switch sides of the court - wherein you find yourself battling your partner rather than supporting her - can weaken and ultimately erode the best of relationships. Whose team are you on?
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