Admittedly, there is not much relationship advice I ever received.
That's because I never enjoyed talking about my relationships with anyone but my partner.
I couldn’t enjoy telling my mum, my friends, or anyone else that I struggle with my boy. It just wouldn’t feel right. Maybe, it would sometimes be relieving to do so, but I guess I won’t ever do that.
Fortunately, I never felt the urge to do so. Still, even if there were significant problems, I’d prefer talking to my partner instead of discussing my relationship problems with someone else.
Therefore, I never asked anyone for relationship advice; neither did I consume any content about that topic so far.
However, a few weeks ago, I accidentally stumbled upon one specific piece of advice that caught my attention.
I was not precisely seeking help, but I knew this little change could have a massive impact on my relationship.
My boyfriend is at the same time my business partner, and on most days, we are spending 24 hours together. On one side, that’s a luxury, on the other side, however, it can be really tough.
Running a business with your better half is not easy. And we struggled tremendously for many months until we figured out how to get on well with each other even if we disagreed on business topics.
Hiding emotions and being rational when it comes to business topics, even if we are facing a relationship crisis, is not possible for us. My boy and I are both quite sensible, and we can’t deal with harsh criticism from each other, no matter if it’s about business or not.
One of the core principles of our relationship, right from the beginning, was honesty.
We had an unusual start in our relationship as we’ve both been in other relationships when we first met each other. Thus, being honest and talking about everything openly was a must-have and the only way to figure things out if we wanted to be together.
As a result, we got used to telling each other everything that crosses our minds. Negative, as well as positive.
On some days (usually when everything is great anyway), we end up celebrating our successes and talking about how much we love each other and how awesome we are. And on some other days, we end up enumerating ten things each of us is doing wrong.
I guess any relationship has its ups and downs, but as we spend so much time together every single day, we need to pay even closer attention to being kind to each other.
Admittedly, I was convinced that our way of talking about anything openly and giving each other feedback all the time was a good idea. However, the relationship advice I read about advised the contrary:
Every day, leave at least three things unsaid.
When I first read that, I thought, “WTF, why should I do that? I want him to know his mistakes and do it better the next time.”
Yet, after a few minutes, I grasped the true message behind that recommendation.
The author Alex Elle once stated the following:
“Love people for who they are and not for who you want them to be.”
I guess that’s the point about leaving a few things unsaid every day.
Admittedly, once I tried to apply “Leave at least three things unsaid every day.”, I was surprised by how hard it was. I realized how I was telling my boy what to do differently and how to do things better all the time.
I was disappointed by myself for letting him feel as if he was making so many mistakes all day long. I never intended to let him feel bad or unworthy, but I got used to it. And so did he. We both are constantly telling each other what to do better, even though we don’t have a negative purpose.
We are both personal growth coaches, so we strive for excellence in all that we do, and we both agree that we want to grow into our own best versions. Yet, I realized most of the advice I give him is complete nonsense.
For example, a few days ago, the following happened:
I went grocery shopping on my way back home after a workout in the gym. I bought way too many groceries, and I struggled to bring them home. I was soaked with sweat and could hardly carry the bags. While I was at the gym, my boy was running, and he came back a few minutes before me.
When I was at home, I realized he had locked the door, and I had to look for my keys. Guess what? I found it really annoying to search my keys because I was already so angry that I carried so much all the way home.
I opened the door, he just finished showering, and the only thing I said was: “Why did you lock the door, you knew I was coming home now?!”
He told me he didn’t like to leave the door unlocked when I am not at home, and he’s in the shower, and I could completely understand his point.
The problem was not the locked door but my stupidity of buying way more stuff than I could carry.
So, instead of blaming him and spreading that negative energy, I could’ve shut up and learn my lesson: Don’t buy more food than you can carry.
A few minutes after that happening, I truly understood what the advice of “Leaving things unsaid” means. And by now, I am giving my best to apply it every single day.
I know I can’t change him, and I don’t want to. Thus, I can also leave things unsaid and ensure we get on well with each other instead of spreading negativity.
As our relationship affects our business and our business affects our relationship, it’s even more important to keep a high, positive energy level throughout our days, and I am genuinely proud that I managed to follow the “Leave things unsaid” rule for a few weeks now.
“Real Love Is Not Being Asked To Change, Or Asking Someone To Change For You.”
Honest and open communication are key factors of any strong relationship. However, sometimes, we can leave things unsaid if that’s more beneficial for both partners.
Why spread criticism and negativity if it’s not really worth it?
Being in a relationship with someone means accepting all parts of him or her. So why try to educate our partner instead of turning a blind eye to tiny mistakes or inconveniences?
My next step is going to be telling my boy about the rule and asking him to apply it as well. Or, I’ll just send him the link to this post, let’s see.