In my book, Love Tips and Trips for Gay and Lesbian Relationships, I have identified 50 Ways to Keep Your Lover. My post last Friday offered strategies 37-38, this week I am sharing strategies 39-40. Look for more strategies next Friday!
50 Ways to Keep Your Lover: # 39-40
39. Distinguish Wants from Needs. OUTstanding love insures that both partners are able to get their needs met, not their wants. You may want a Hummer to feel safe, but you don't need a Hummer to be safe. Your want is a Hummer, your need is safety. You do need to know that your partner will not harm you, that you can count on her to do what she says she is going to do, and be where she says she is going to be, when she says she'll be there.
When you know the difference between what you want and what you need, you can focus on really getting your needs met. Every one NEEDS to be able to meet their needs. In OUTstanding relationships, both partners know that it is never in question whether or not each partner will get their needs met--the question is simply, "how will you get your needs met?" Together, OUTstanding couples decide what needs to happen to affirm each partner, and support one another in reaching their highest good.
40. Take time to be alone. Relationships make it easy never to be alone. Yet everyone needs alone time. Alone time gives you the opportunity for self-reflection. It is essential that you continue to listen to your inner voice. You must be able to identify who you are, what you want, how you feel, where you are headed, and how you want to get there in life.
Without a self, a mind of your own, feelings of your own, goals and dreams of your own, you have little of yourself actually to bring to a relationship. Remember, you are the resource. When you partner with someone, you are literally investing your life in a relationship that is also invested in by one other--your partner. Together, you each have strengths and challenges which you deposit in your shared investment--the relationship--and that is what comprises the sum of what you have to draw from within your relationship as you move through life as a couple.