In all relationships you have to choose your battles. I say this because if you do not, you probably won’t have any enduring relationships. There must be give and take – and sometimes that give and take requires you to keep your mouth shut about something that irritates you in the moment.
Not that choosing your battles is easy. It requires a touch of wisdom and a whole lot of patience. It is a relationship cost/benefit analysis that occurs in the moment. How much is it worth to take on the battle of the annoying habit he or she has? Should today be the day that the prioritization of football over HGTV is decided? Are those dirty clothes strewn about worth a confrontation? Is the toilet seat position an act of abject disrespect worthy of redress?
There are so many things that can drive you crazy in relationships – little things that grate on you disproportionately some days. These little things can add up and when they do you can forget about the many positive things a person brings to a relationship. There is something quite powerful about letting some things go. It is freeing when you realize that not all behaviors or lack thereof are intended to be affronts to your sensibilities. Sometimes people are just being their imperfect selves and you have to realize that on the whole their good far outweighs the annoying things they do. Sometimes the imperfect person is you and someone else is giving you latitude because they see the whole of you as being more valuable than the petty imperfections you may exhibit.
The next time you are ready to react to imperfection in your relationship take a deep breath and ask yourself how important this one imperfection is relative to your ability to remain in the relationship. Would you want someone to correct you for a like grievance? All relationships have some battles, but no relationship can survive constant battles – so choose your battles. In doing so you may find that you have also chosen a happier co-existence with a fellow imperfect being.
Day one thousand two hundred and eighty-six of the new forty – obla di obla da