If you didn’t read yesterday’s post – have a vada here: https://www.facebook.com/WiseandGorgeousCoaching/posts/10158049546001814
This one is for people in partnerships
I’ll get to the people on their own, I promise.
Yesterday I showed you a graph – and asked you to find yourself on it.
But before we go on, I want to tell you about a couple I actually adore.
Going to change the names because – yanno.
So Mike and Sarah have been together for 15 years.
Two boys 12 and 10.
Both of them annoyingly good looking – him: hunky hipster male grooming salon owner, her: English Rose kind of an outpatient nurse.
Nice house in a nice area – all the normal gubbins you’d want.
You’d hate them if they weren’t so damn nice.
I’ve, for reasons not important here, had conversations with each of them this week.
Not to put too fine a point on it – they are doing each others’ head in.
He’s at home with the kids (he’s a great dad, he’s not complaining) but he literally cannot run his business.
She’s been literally run off her feet, with extra shifts in areas of the hospital she is not used to.
She’s burned out and there’s no let-up – in fact, things seem to be getting harder as she gets more tired.
They are on opposite sides of the chart;
she’s overwhelmed and feels under skilled – permanently anxious and out of her comfort zone.
She feels like he’s got the better deal – at home, no work – just the house and kids to deal with – and free to go for walks, watch the telly etc.
He’s beyond bored – he loves the kids, but he’s used to a thriving City Centre Salon, managing staff, going to fancy conferences –
he’d even started to do some telly and radio.
Now his day is cooking, breaking up squabbles and trying to persuade the boys to do their home school work.
All the time, the thing he worked so hard to build seems to be slipping away.
He’s uncertain whether they’ll even open the salon again.
However politically correct you might think this
– he says It feels emasculating.
(n.b. before someone gets ‘triggered’ by that –
how people feel is never incorrect.
It’s just how they feel.
The rest of us don’t really get an opinion on it.
Same goes for how you feel.)
Both of them feel guilt, at times, about the other’s situation – but at the same time, resentment – that they are stuck with own.
This isn’t what they signed up to and the cracks have started to show.
What makes the whole thing worse is the uncertainty.
When will it end?
What will it be like when it does?
If it does..
Will she catch Covid?
Will she bring it home?
How will the children cope with going back?
Will they be able to pay the bills when the money runs out.
We need a certain amount of uncertainty to thrive.
For Mike – the sameness of every day is wearing away at him.
No relief, no trips to the cinema or holidays or other things we would do to break up the monotony.
But we also need certainty;
Will I rise to these challenges?
Will there be a business?
What is the end date?
How can I plan?
We need things to rely on.
We need variety to keep us interested
We need to know that we are capable of doing the things we have in front of us,
but also we need to enjoy those things.
So the next step in all of this – before we can do anything about it…
after you’ve figured out where YOU are on the graph, and why
is to work out where the other significant people are in all of this.
To really put yourself in their shoes and think about what their usual days were like,
and how their current days are.
What kinds of things they are feeling and thinking.
What they would prefer to happen.
Where the frustrations are.
It could be that you are in the same place on the graph
(in which case you could be a great source of support for each other
OR find yourself competing for who is having the worst time of it)
Or you are in different places –
and a better understanding of what’s happening for the other could help you see solutions,
you might not on their own.
So today’s task is working out where your ‘significant other’ is on the chart?
Is it the same place as you – or somewhere else?
How must it be for them?
What are their challenges?
Let me know what you think.
We’ll be talking about it over in Wise & Gorgeous: Inner Circle
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