Finances, Work (in and out of the house), Sex, In Laws and Children are the five big areas that dominate conflict in most relationships. Ensuring timely and open communication and pragmatic approaches to discussing issues that arise will ensure our relationship is sustained for the long-term.
All Relationships including those with your spouse and children (and others) tend towards entropy, disorder and dissolution. Marriage and divorces can be disastrous for those concerned, especially for children. Being intentional and principle centred can revitalise and enrich your marriage, ensuring your marriage is sustained and endures.
This series of blog posts explores each of the five big areas for conflict in relationships emphasising that by taking intentional steps to discuss and resolve these issues, they will have a lasting effect.
2. Work: It is easy to get caught up in the demands of life to find we are living our lives narrowly focusing on work or home, and we forget or neglect ourselves and our marriage.
We are the instruments of our own performance and to be effective, we need to recognize the importance of balance and taking time to regularly refine and give attention to the following four areas in our lives: 1. Physical; 2. Intellectual; 3. Social and 4. Spiritual. The late Stephen Covey suggests consistent and continued refinement and attention to all four areas is crucial.
For marriage, it is essential that we continually review and draw our attention to these four areas to ensure an upward spiral of growth, change, and continuous improvement. The importance of renewal in our lives can not be underestimated. Learning, growing and developing new capabilities and expanding on the old ones is the process through which marital harmony is made possible.
Attempting to balance exercise, nutrition and stress management (physical); by reading, visualising, planning and writing (Intellectual); focusing on clarifying values and our commitment, dedicating time to study, our faith and/or meditation (Spiritual); and through our service, being empathic, being synergistic and ensuring security (Social), will make a significant difference.
Within the house, the demands can be consuming. A practical approach is to list all you weekly household tasks and allocate ownership for each. Many of our expectations about task allocation will be based on our family of origin and who undertook certain tasks in our childhood.
Discuss the task allocation that occurred in your family of origin and understand that there are ingrained assumptions etched into out brains – who did what and when. The challenge here is to uncover those assumptions and rescript an approach that works for your marriage. Remain open to change and decide an approach that is balanced for both you and your partner.
Through continued commitment and loyalty we can tackle the ups and downs of our marriage together. Don’t allow the daily grind to become the focus to the exclusion of your marriage. The most important thing you can start doing is looking after yourself by focusing on these four areas. You don’t have to get it right the first time. This is part of life’s journey of learning and developing. You will get there if you are willing to invest the time and effort. Be proactive and do this for your marriage today.
Do you need a boost in your relationship? The PREPARE/ENRICH relationship assessment has been proven to assist couples for over 40 years. Looking for a facilitator to work with you, then contact us.
PREPARE/ENRICH is a customised online assessment tool that identifies each couples unique strength and growth areas. Based on their assessment results, a facilitator provides feedback sessions, helping couples to discuss and understand their results while teaching them proven relationship skills.
More tips at Intentional-Relationship.com