When was the last time you hit pause, sat down, and really thought about what you want your life to be about? This morning? Yesterday? Last week? Or… you can’t even remember?
We live in a “GO GO GO”-world and we always seem to be chasing something – more money, love, adventure, safety, recognition, approval, freedom – whatever we think will make us happier.
At the same time, we’re caught in a constant balancing game. How do you get all you ever dreamed of in one area of your life, without losing a little somewhere else? Like a fulfilling career while also having a fantastic, vibrant relationship with your partner? These two areas often seem to be in conflict with each other. And for many, that conflict can go on for an entire lifetime – feeling constantly torn between work and life at home.
So how do you win? How do have a successful career without compromising your relationship and vice versa?
You put your relationship first.
Because a career, no matter how successful, can’t make up for the nagging feeling of emptiness you get when your relationship is stale, broken or just doesn’t feel quite right anymore. As a result, it’s only a matter of time before the stress and unhappiness in your relationship start stealing energy from your career.
And really… what’s the point of success if what you’re coming home to every night is a slowly fading relationship that brings you more anxiety than love and connection?
A great relationship, on the other hand, doesn’t steal time and energy from anything else. The energy you put into your relationship is energy you get back multiplied: when your love life is exciting, stable and alive you become a happier, more confident person and that positive energy spills over to all other areas of your life.
This is not about pushing your career aside. If anything, putting your relationship first will give you more strength, support, and creativity to pursue your own dreams.
However, as I’m sure you’ve experienced – life happens. We’re tired after work, we have a deadline this week or we have other things we want to do, leaving the relationship last on the to-do list. We assume the relationship will take care of itself, and as long as it’s not “bad,” it’s okay, right?
Not really… not if we consider our intimate relationship as one of the most important parts of our life.
So how do you put your relationship first?
The 2 Simple But Crucial Things Every Relationship Needs
1. Create a Shared Vision
To avoid ever getting stuck or drifting apart, you need to get crystal clear on what direction you are heading together. What do you want out of life? What do you want your everyday life to look like? How does your relationship feel on a normal Monday evening? What matters most to you?
Share your deepest dreams and desires with each other and merge it into an overall vision for your life together. Where do you live? What do you do? What does your social life look like? What’s your health like? How in love are you? Who are you being, for yourself and for each other?
Get specific, make it colorful, exciting, alive: a life you can’t wait to start building together.
If we don’t have a shared vision, it’s easy to sooner or later fall into the trap of “you do your thing, I do my thing” – we drift apart, lose our connection and eventually end up asking ourselves “is this it?”
We don’t want that!
Instead, imagine a life where you are both pulling in the same direction because your end goal is the same. Your individual dreams fit into a bigger picture, and your relationship is given a much stronger purpose. It doesn’t matter who scores, you are a team and what matters is the joy of playing the game together.
2. Move Towards Your Vision
When your future is compelling enough, it will fuel you to get going. Clarity and excitement for your new path will make the actions you need to take a lot easier. They become things you get to do, not “have to do.” So, what can you do to start moving closer to your vision? What do you need to stop doing? Write a list, and start taking those steps, one by one.
Your vision is your baby. You don’t create it and forget about it. It needs care. Talk about your vision regularly, tweak it, exchange ideas, share your struggles and check in with each other on how you can support one another the best right now.
You can have it all. Just let go of the balancing game – invest your energy smarter instead of trying to do it evenly. Give a little more to your relationship to receive more in all areas of life.
- The 2 Simple But Crucial Things Every Relationship Needs - December 25, 2017