Over the years, I’ve been privileged to assist couples in their journey of understanding their relationship issues. Often, the key problem is that each partner wants the other to agree with their viewpoint, which causes further conflict of the four ‘R’s’ resistance, reluctance, repulsion and resentment.
HOWEVER, THERE’S A ROUTE ACROSS THE FRONTLINE WITHOUT THE BATTLE FOR WHO’S RIGHT:
Each partner has to write out their ideal day in detail. Afterwards, you compare your days and in the areas that you are compatible, you opt to expand these times and make sure they become a part of your sharing. In the areas where you are both doing different things, you see if you can do them in the same arena without conflict (i.e. they listen to music whilst you play tombraider 😂) and those areas that are completely different, you let each other fulfil their own ideal (as long as they don’t damage trust). The ideal day has to be along the lines of your current living conditions, so you can’t write, ‘I’d go for a swim in my own swimspa,’ if you don’t have one, so you have to adjust it to what’s possible, so, ‘I’d go for a swim at the local sports centre.’
It’s also important to include the household chores and agree on how these are divided. For example, perhaps your partner goes out to work all day and you work from home, but when your partner arrives home they expect dinner on the table, a clean house and they don’t contribute to any meal preparation or cleaning and you resent all the extra work. This has to be dealt with in the ideal day, otherwise a BIG problem will be silently eating away at the relationship!
Beyond agreeing on the household chores, if an aspect of your partners ideal day is not agreeable to you, then you have to drop your judgment and resistance to it, as what works for them has nothing to do with you. For example, perhaps they like to come home and open a beer after work and you prefer a cup-of-tea. If you don’t like them drinking beer, then this is your issue, not theirs, as it’s part of their ideal day. Trying to control them and enforce your ideal day upon them is a slippery slope, so all you need to do is focus on your cup-of-tea and breathe through any feelings. What you’re saying is, ‘I love you and myself enough to live a fulfilled day without any guilt.’
With this understanding, a lot of the tension in a relationship fades away, as each person makes room for the others fulfilment. There can be other issues i.e. jealousy, laziness or a mismatch with intimacy and this requires something else, but on general power and role struggles, the above task can bring a renewed sense of joy.
Have a perfect, ideal day!
By Jo Le-Rose