About eighty percent of relationship issues surround four major issues. Not in order are the four: Sex, Money, In-Laws, and Children. Why these four are so potent is that they reflect the person’s values of what is important, and how to deal with them. The great difficulty in discussing these issues is staying away from the thought that, ‘I’m right, they’re biased.’
At the heart of any relationship is the question, ‘can I talk about my values without being criticized or judged, and can the other understand my point of view?’ Be clear that understanding does not necessarily meant agreement. Only when I understand the other person’s point of view and they understand mine do we have the possibility of coming to a conclusion or a solution that will work for us.
I mentioned in a previous article about the ‘emotional bank account,’ that perhaps the biggest ‘deposit’ in a relationship is to simply listen without criticism of the other’s point of view. Be careful about giving advice during these conversations, unless the advice is specifically asked for, as giving advice without request is simply judgment.
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