Love and Business: How to Flatline a Perfect Relationship
So you’ve met someone and you’ve fallen for them, or maybe you haven’t fallen for them but you want to take things to the next level. You could be about to make the biggest mistake of your life and ruin your prince charming or sleeping beauty.
As they say it’s the silence between the notes that makes the music, it is equally true that it’s the separation between the people that makes the relationship. The more separation there is, the more passion and desire there is. Think about being away from a loved one or on a business trip and coming back, how passionate that return is and how quickly it dissipates. Now what would you do to keep that alive full time?
I’ve already addressed energy depletion, energy manipulation, energy transfer, and energy drains in my essay Relationship Follies so we’re not going to get too much into the energy aspect of this. We are going to define this in terms of love and business. And as you can tell by the title, they never go together. Or in Cal’s words from Talladega Nights; Business and Relationships go together like Peanut Butter and Ladies.
The Quality of Your Relationship
The quality of your relationship is solely determined by your ability to separate business from love, or business and personal. No matter how small of business that infiltrates your personal lives, it starts an innate countdown timer mentally in the person(s) affected by the business demand and if it’s not offset by extra attention and personal energy going to that person(s), eventually the timer hits 00:00:00 and they blow up, oftentimes leaving a relationship in pieces.
Let’s define business.
Business in this sense is any operation that in separate existence would be a normal requirement of an individual in order to survive or maintain their life or lifestyle.
What the hell does that mean?
It means if you dirty dishes and you’re by yourself then you wash them yourself. Simple enough?
The minute someone else takes over these aspects of your life or does them for you the more reliant you are, the more expectations you develop, the more granted you take that person for, and the less you appreciate them for it. In fact, at some levels you start to view that as their role and get angry when they don’t do certain things like this, oftentimes, justifying their role by offsetting it with something else you would normally have to do if you separately existed (work).
To take away the negativity of this merger, if you and your partner decide it necessary, you should basically establish a real business contract instead of conducting assumed business which is a terrible idea. Bluntly write in the contract, I will work here and here for this much time, pay these certain bills, and in exchange you will do the dishes, clean the house, etc etc.
Put all the roles and expectations out there so there’s no awkwardness, the last thing you want to do is have assumed expectations of someone because the likelihood they don’t view it that way is phenomenally high. You may work and they may consider taking care of your kids their offsetting role and anything else they do is because they are being nice. They may even be holding some silent hostility toward you for not pulling your fair share of the weight.
Love Not Definable
We’ve defined business. I’m not going to define love for you because I don’t think it can be defined. Whenever someone has tried to answer why they love someone, all they end up doing is explaining what they love about them. Oh you’re smart, you’re funny, etc. These are things you love about that person, but to define why you are in love with someone or why you love someone, is a lose / lose battle unless the person is willing to accept the shallowness of a list of things you love about them. In simple terms, Love is when you care about someone else more than yourself. It’s a feeling without limit or definition, so don’t try, you’ll know when you love someone.
Moving in Together, the #1 Cause of All Relationship Disease
The next part we want to move into is where the ending of every relationship beginning starts. The culprit…moving in together. Now a lot of people like to blame a lot of different things for the spark fading out of a relationship or the stress of the business aspect of it, so let me be clear. You don’t have to live with someone because you love them, the inverse is true, you shouldn’t live with someone BECAUSE you love them. This does not have to be a next step in a relationship or any step at all even if you’re married. I’m telling you, it’s a mistake. Don’t go into business with someone you love.
When you move in with someone you move into someone, you basically merge a bunch of shit and throw independence out the fucking window. Like that statement? Think about it because it’s the start of the spiral. The tip of the iceberg.
First off, you’re in love with this person because of who they are, and moving in is just a way to capture this person, but they can’t be who they are anymore if you capture them. You will start to take them for granted and expect things. You merge all aspects of personal business. Shopping, eating, financial things, household chores, etc. Someones going to end up doing it.
Even if you try to be smart about it and make a verbal contract where you rotate chores, people don’t like to be on schedule or told what to do. Some days they may not do their part at all or they may not do it the way you want, eventually that builds up, it’s like mental strikes. Once they get 3 strikes you’re going to go off on them and you’ll start resenting each other.
At some point down the road, people like to change, your significant other may not always want to be the one with the job, they may not like doing all the household stuff and kid stuff, they may not like how you have everything in the house arranged your way, they might not like you running the financial aspect of their lives, they might not even like the fact they have to jointly consider anything with you at all.
You can sometimes counter this with separation in the house hold. Own groups of friends, own jobs, own life, own personal space in the house, own area, anything that allows a person to be their own person. People are naturally independent and their ego requires them to identify things as their own. So if you have to live together, it makes perfect sense to have your own bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchens, and do your own laundry etc.
The only joint areas you should have are desirable ones, for example, maybe an entertainment area but if you have different tastes (football sunday) that interferes with the other person, it creates conflict, so your own entertainment area might be necessary. Really, you should have your own house to keep it flawless because the more stuff you joint the more you sacrifice your individuality.
You might say wait a minute, it saves me money, or that’s what people in serious relationships do. I don’t know what movie you’re watching or what fairy tale you’re on, but that’s not what other people do, they are the exceptions, the majority of people who move in spend more money together and end up breaking relationships instead of living happy ones. We have over a 50% divorce rate in America.
So if you marry your love, get a duplex, or a house down the street, or in the same town, whatever. Have the commitments, sure. But being separated allows you to see each other when you have a desire to see each other, not because you have to see each other because you live in the same house.
This type of separation would keep the spark alive if you had one and even allow you to develop the spark. You could take your wife or husband out on dinner dates, go see a movie, you know, all the things that got you to fall in love in the first place. You could sneak over in the middle of the night for sex or you could just sleep by yourself and stay by yourself if you’d like. You could have movie nights, breakfast, the sky’s the limit, but the key is, you’re doing all this by choice and with passion, you’re not doing it because you have to or it’s “what you normally do”. Just because you marry someone doesn’t mean you have to live with them or be around them all the time.
The Marriage Contract Delusion
Marriage isn’t a contract to merge your souls and scrap your individuality. The two people become 1 thing is severely underrated and misunderstood. Marriage is nothing more than a spiritual commitment to another human being, so recognize it for what it is, and un-merge yourself right now, it could save your marriage/relationship. With separation you’ll soon start to fill in your own voids and lose the urge to control and manipulate the other person. You’ll let things just be how they are and let things fall how they will.