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Relationships






~ What is a Life-Long Commitment? ~



Love

A Life-long relationship commitment is not what many think it is. It's not waking up early every morning to make breakfast and eat together. It's not cuddling in bed together until both of you peacefully fall asleep. It's not a clean home and a homemade meal every day.

It's someone who steals all the covers or snores like a chainsaw. It's sometimes slammed doors, and a few harsh words, disagreeing, and the silent treatment until your hearts heal.

. . . . . . then . . . . . forgiveness!

It's coming home to the same person every day that you know loves and cares about you, in spite of and because of who you are. It's laughing about the one time you accidentally did something stupid. It's about dirty laundry and unmade beds without finger pointing. It's about helping each other with the hard work of life! It's about swallowing the nagging words instead of saying them out loud. It's about eating the easiest meal you can make and sitting down together at 10 p.m. to eat because you both had a crazy day. It's when you have an emotional breakdown, and your love lays with you and holds you and tells you everything is going to be okay, and you believe them. It's when "Netflix and Chill" literally means you watch Netflix and hang out. It's about still loving someone even though sometimes they make you absolutely insane, angry, and hurt your feelings. Who loves you fat or thin, happy or mad, young or old.

Living with the person you love is not perfect, and sometimes it's hard, but it's amazing, comforting, and one of the best things you'll ever experience.

                                      ~ Author Unknown


That beautiful piece was culled from a Facebook post with no credit given to its author. Please use the comment box below if you know (or are) the author of these powerful and enlightening words

. . . or just want to offer a comment on your thoughts.


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~ The Heisman Effect in Relationships ~



“Who really wins when we seek for those we care about most to succeed, but at no greater gain than we ourselves have already achieved?”


The Heisman TrophyThe Heisman Trophy

So what does the above quote really mean and how does practicing its principle effectively prevent us from reaching our highest achievements? Many times people want to see their partners and loved ones succeed, but they don’t want those people to grow into a place where they may move ahead of or away from them.

For example: while working in Health and Fitness as a Personal Trainer and Nutritional Counselor, I often worked with one spouse but not the other, and regardless of whether my client was the husband or the wife, the other would give a modest but often false support of their partner in their pursuit of lost weight and better health. It seemed the partner often held the belief that if my client were to prosper and succeed in their goals of weight loss and better health then they might no longer find their partner attractive and that could cause problems in the relationship. So the partner ended up giving a false support because they wanted to look encouraging and supportive, but their underlying Fear sabotaged any efforts at true support. Obviously, this irrational Fear stems mainly from the partner’s underlying issues of insecurity and low self-esteem, but the fact still remained, they wanted their partner to succeed, but did not want them to grow into a place where they were better than them – “at no greater gain than they had already achieved”.

We call this the Heisman Effect! Think about the Heisman Trophy where the ball carrier has one arm carrying the ball and is extending his other stiff arm to hold back the would be tackler. That would be tackler is the partner trying to better themselves and the Heisman ball carrier is the partner with the extended hand “holding them back”.

Just think about what two people could achieve if they can avoid the Heisman Effect and support each other completely in all endeavors. Their achievements would be limited only by the extent of their dreams and aspirations.

Side stepping the Heisman Effect can be easily achieved by embracing and practicing the concept of, Give and Give below.


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~ A Healthy Relationship ~



A Healthy Relationship Balance exists in the pink where WE come together but only if there is a respectful and encouraged Purple individuality that we honor and celebrate in each other. The Purple YOU and the Purple ME represent our individual lives and the Pink WE is where we share a portion of OUR lives in the blissful union of a loving, respectful and supportive relationship. 


It is important to share mutual likes and life philosophies and a healthy physical attraction as those represent the foundational cornerstones of why you came together in the first place and decided to stay together as you got to know one another better. Yet, to remain in a lasting relationship it is equally important to celebrate in each other the elements of each individual that you DO NOT share in common. You don't both have to enjoy sushi or crawfish or playing golf or rooting for the same sports teams or the same type of movies. You don't even have to share ONLY mutual friends.

Trust in a healthy relationship grants each partner the freedom to be who they are and enjoy life separate from the other. When these differences are celebrated and encouraged the Pink WE becomes exponentially stronger and the bond between you both grows deeper and more rewarding.

Those differences can even be celebrated in friendly rivals at times, such as when you two lovers where Red Sox and Yankees shirts to support their favorite teams.

Celebrating differences may at times also require compromise. But please don't confuse "compromise" with Give & Take (as discussed and dismissed below). Compromise simply means sometimes favoring to do what your partner prefers, as in a Give & Give Relationship. By each maintaining your individuality and celebrating for one another the Purple sections of YOU & ME, there will be plenty of times for you each to enjoy your individual passions, either by yourself or with other friends. Yet, there will also be times while sharing the Pink WE moments when you just don't feel like doing the same thing, yet still wish to share time together ... and that's okay!! Flip a coin to decide ... or better yet, exercise that desire to take care of and please your partner (as discussed Below) and be the Giver in those moments.


Consider it from this perspective:

You have YOUR life and I have MY life!

And together WE have OUR life!

Think Purple! Think Pink!

Think You! Think Me!

and then Think US!!

"You love me and ask me to share in a celebrated portion of your life. And I love you and ask you to share in a celebrated portion of my life. Yet, all the while still holding onto who we each are as individuals. After all, it has been everything you have ever experienced in your life, the ups, the downs, the successes & failures, the past relationships and every single experience you have ever had that has made you who you are. And it is who you are that is the person to whom I now have this overwhelming and uncontrollable attraction. So why would I want you to give up any of that individuality. I want to celebrate it and encourage it because it represents the best of who you are." Celebrate me and my individuality as well, along with a healthy dose of Trust between us and there is no limit to the heights and passions to which we can soar together." 


From another perspective: Consider NOT each having an individual life (or at least, not much of one) - what then are you going to discuss and share with one another? If all you have to talk about are the stories of the times you shared together, then dialogue between you is going to get pretty mundane by most likely being limited to your work day schedules. Celebrate your individual lives and encourage each other to have some Purple Time and you'll never run out of things to discuss and share. 

... and that is the secret to growing old together!!

Celebrate the person who makes you laugh, respects and encourages your individuality, loves and appreciates you for just being who you are! Celebrate the person with whom you love to talk ... and swing together on the porch in a love seat for two!!


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~ Give & Give in Relationships ~



Whose turn is it to feed the dog or take him for a walk? You cook dinner and I’ll clean the dishes. You drop the kids at school and I’ll pick them up. These are just a few fundamental examples of what people often call a Give and Take relationship and those same people often say that a healthy relationship excels best in that partnership of Give and Take. Trading off some necessary tasks is not a bad way to keep things balanced and is often the only way to get some things done. But what if both parties just spent their time giving to one another? What would that look like? Let’s say the dog needs to go out in the middle of the night - who gets up? That situation usually brings a small debate deciding who’s up to bat to complete the next task. But what if both parties are just eager to get the job done because they want to take care of their partner? In a truly healthy and functional relationship both parties should relish every opportunity to be there and care for one another. Those relationships excel and thrive best in a partnership of Give and Give. Don’t hesitate and wait to see who will step up - just do it! In that situation both parties spend their energies just giving to one another and never strain the relationship with the selfish need take.

“When you give to a Giver they give back, but when you give to a Taker … They Suck!”

Givers are those people who share everything they have from food off their plate to the feelings in their heart. They just do things for their partner whether it be a special project or a mundane task without waiting to be asked or waiting to see if it will really be their ResponsibilityTakers on the other hand, are those people who simply take without ever really giving back. I think we all know who they are and what their behavior looks like. They are the friend, acquaintance or co-worker who helps themselves to what’s in your fridge, but then never opens theirs when you’re at their home. They believe that, “what is theirs is theirs and what is yours is ours”. They take physical things without sharing their own, but more importantly, they are the people who put an emotional strain on any relationship because they take the emotional energy you give without ever returning the favor. They can be found in any relationship, but they’re most often and more clearly defined in emotion driven romantic relationships.

To succeed in any relationship you need to know and understand your own role. Are you a Giver or are you a Taker, and more importantly, how do others perceive and see you? Givers seize every opportunity to take care of and do things for their friends and the people they love, while Takers just suck. They usually don’t even realize they are Takers and often get offended when they are called out for being such. So take a good hard introspective look and determine if your greatest pleasures are rooted in what you do for others or in what they do for you.

Give and Give relationships are founded in the Cookie Jar Theory where both parties spend their efforts giving to one another while accepting their partner for exactly who they are without expectations beyond the cookies they’re baking.


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Be With The Right Person For YOU!!

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~ The Cookie Jar Theory ~



If you don’t take care of yourself first then you can’t really be of any use to anyone else. Just think about the rule on an airplane about the proper procedure to follow when the oxygen masks fall - Put yours on first then assist children and others. 

The theory being that it’s real tough to help others if you’re already passed out from lack of oxygen. And that premise also applies perfectly to other aspects of life as well. If your kitchen isn’t clean or your own house is not in order then how can you be of any use to others? If you’re not happy, confident and emotionally complete then how can you be at your best and give your all to those you care about and love?

The Cookie Jar Theory is a metaphor for taking care of yourself first so that you can then be at your absolute best for others. Although the Cookie Jar Theory focuses mainly on romantic relationships, this principle can apply equally well to relationship with friends and coworkers, as well as to caring for children and other loved ones that rely upon you.

Cookie JarOver-Flowing Cookie Jar

We often give to others what we believe they want, need or may be looking for, with the hope that someone will also be giving to us what they believe we want, need or may be looking for. The end result is that we all end up stepping on our own toes because we often find ourselves trying to be something or someone we simply just are not. The Cookie Jar Theory says that instead of baking cookies to please everyone else with the hope that someone else is also baking cookies for us - we should instead, bake our own cookies until our cookie jar is overflowing with the cookies we love and then give away all our excess to others. That way, we will always be whole, happy and complete and in need of and longing for nothing, and what we end up giving to others is the best of who we are and what we have to offer.

How often does a new relationship start out in absolute bliss, only to fade once you really get to know one another? You know why? It’s most often because we are not being ourselves in those initial stages of a new relationship. We often behave that way because we’re trying to be for someone else what and who we believe they want us to be. People often call this putting on airs rather than just being who we are.

“You can’t make another person love you. All you can do is be a person worthy of being loved and hope that you are.”

Wouldn’t it be great to just be who you are, confident in all your personal quirks and idiosyncrasies, and have someone except and love you for just being you? The Cookie Jar Theory is just the metaphor. The actual principle says that if you are confident, happy and complete, then you are already at 100% and in need of nothing. So what other people bring to your life is a bonus to be simply enjoyed without the pressure or the expectation of hoping they can or will make you happy and/or complete you.

By extension, let’s apply this theory to caring for friends, family (children) and even coworkers. How can you hope to be of any use to any of those people if you’re not whole and still looking for someone or something else to complete you? Just think about it - only when you are happy, content, confident and complete can you really be at your absolute best for anyone else.


So, bake your own cookies first and always make sure to “secure your own oxygen mask before assisting others”.


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