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You Have Choices in Your Relationship

August 14, 2008
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There are a lot of choices to be made in a relationship. Some of the choices are simple – what to eat for dinner, where to go on a date, who to see, etc. Other choices are more complex – where to live, making a major purchase, a career. There are some choices most of us are not even consciously aware that we have – such as choosing to be angry or not be angry with our partner, or choosing the right thing to say.

It’s the unconscious choices that can sometimes be the most important and have the greatest impact on a relationship. Take the classic example of meeting your partner somewhere for dinner. Your partner finally shows up 15 minutes late, with no real excuse other than “traffic”. Right there you have a choice – you can choose to be annoyed or angry by it, or you can choose to just forget about it and move on to an enjoyable evening.

These choices can crop up in thousands of places. Maybe your partner never helps out with housework, or doesn’t show an interest in the activities you enjoy. Again, you can choose to get angry or you can choose to think of ways to ask them to be more helpful or do something you both enjoy instead.

While I’m not saying you should ignore every single one of your partner’s less than positive attributes, you should be trying to identify your choices and thinking about how each choice will affect your relationship before reacting.

Do you make conscious choices in your relationship? Or do you often just react, without thinking through your different options in reacting and the ways it will affect your relationship?

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