Investing in the Relationship.
Everybody has needs, wants, and desires. Many researchers, psychologists, and even philosophers have spent a great deal of time exploring basic human needs, our desires and our wants, and have come up with fancy tables and diagrams to illustrate what we need to feel happy, fulfilled, and satisfied. However, the question still remains, how do we fulfill these needs? Especially when we are in a relationship? Ultimately, fulfilling our needs, wants, and desires is selfish endeavour, and the Catch-22 becomes, how do we fulfil these needs, wants, and desires while being in a relationship?
Perhaps it is poetic irony, but the answer is the relationship that we cultivate and develop becomes the mechanism through which we satisfy our needs, wants, and desires. This is why many psychologists use a bank account style metaphor for relationships. The more we invest in the relationship bank account, the more energy we put into it, and the more that we save, allows us to make withdrawals at a later point from the relationship.
Just like any other investment, we can make investments in different areas of our life. The more we invest in our relationships, the happier and more satisfied we will be, so long as we're making the correct investments with the right people. And just like financial planning requires us to budget some money to save, to give, and to spend, we also need to allocate our time and our energy into these relationships in an even and balanced manner. If I spend all my money, then I will have no money to save or to give.
For example, if Jeff wants to go to 2 hockey tournaments a year, he would need to balance the time and financial cost of these tournaments, with his partner. If Jeff spends a total of $3000, then to ensure balance in his relationship, he would want to make sure that his partner, Susan, is able to have 2 weekends to herself, with an approximate budget of $3000. He would also want to ensure that both he and Susan have 2 weekends spent with each other as well. You will notice that this automatically creates balance in the relationship, they spend some time apart which will create desire, they are allowed to have space within the relationship to pursue their own hobbies, and then they have an opportunity to look forward to some time together.
But, if Jeff goes to hockey tournaments and there is no money left over for Susan to satisfy her hobbies, and they are unable to have some quiet weekends together, Susan will eventually start to feel taken for granted, unimportant, and rejected. This will create disharmony in the relationship because it is not in balance. It would be like spending all of your money, and then having none left over to give to friends and family, or to invest in the future.
The more time we spend investing in the relationship, creating fair and equal opportunities to resources, both time with our partners and time recharging away from our partners, the happier we will be, as we find balance in life. So, make those investments in the relationship.
As we said on the farm, You Reap What You Sow.
Come heal, grow and create together
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