During the day, I get paid to be pragmatic– to give people advice in their prenups or divorces that is completely stripped of any emotion. This is how we are trained in law school– to focus on the facts, and detach from our client’s emotions. Those who choose to go to law school probably already have strongly exhibited this ability to compartmentalize– a real strength in business, but a real weakness in personal relationships.
Our personal relationships are based on love, trust, and hopefully mutual admiration. It’s all about opening up your emotions, breaking down barriers, and letting someone into your world. To build a healthy relationship with someone (after you’ve gone through the initial 20 questions phase) you need to work on what I call making glue– enjoying experiences together and sharing fun activities that will provide awesome memories so when you hit a rough patch (and we all do at some point) the glue is what binds and keeps you together.
Making glue doesn’t have to be expensive– it could be a hike, impromptu picnic, or even just washing a car together. Hosting a BBQ as a couple, enjoying a kayak trip, or doing a family outing with kids is all part of an important process, where you spend quality time and show one another that you are making the other a priority in your life. True friends will not only understand the importance of this, they will support you in this endeavor.
Remember, the point of the game is to find the best match and get out. But to make your love last, you should never stop working on making glue. This is where I think a lot of people fail– they have this great romance in the beginning, and then they fall into a complacent pattern that is comfortable. Well, for some of us that is just way too boring, and those of us that need a little spice in our life, need to have an ongoing effort made to demonstrate we rank in someone’s world.
Love and happiness are not permanent accomplishments, but rather intense sentiments that you have to work at maintaining alive. They are the glue that binds you to another, and it does require constant effort, but the endeavor is totally worth it!
By Regina A. DeMeo, Esq.