We’ll try just about anything to salvage our relationships other than the thing that clearly needs to be done. Healthy relationships are not about retreats or unique practices or vibrant concepts. The heartbeat of relationships is the pursuit of truth. And the simple, but not always easy, answer to saving our relationships is to stop avoiding truth.
Definitions are essential to healthy relationships. What does the word commitment mean? What does respect mean? What is the definition of success?
In toxic relationships, we pass one another like ships in the night. Or, we wrestle with one another as if we are in some sort of Olympic competition. We are fighting for victory rather than truth.
If we can develop a proper and true definitions, our marriages and friendships will be transformed. The simple solution to all relationship problems is establishing correct definitions. It makes it more difficult for us to play the comfortable role of victim when we acknowledge truth and come face-to-face with the way we fall short of it.
What We Do Instead
As it is, we cling to our own definitions of things. We clench our fists around perspective that is not about truth but is about self-preservation.
The most popular poison in relationships is called “Yeah But”. We avoid having to encounter the truth by changing the subject. Did I have an affair? Yeah, But you aren’t attentive to my needs. Avoiding responsibility and ownership keeps us from truth and from intimacy with one another.
What Do We Define?
So, what do we need to define? There are a myriad of options. The place to start is the place you want to be. What is the vision for your relationship? Why are we doing this? Teenagers practice this (albeit not fully maturely) when they have a DTR – determine the relationship. It’s where two teens ‘have a talk’ about what exactly is going on with their relationship – are they talking or dating or hooking up?
The place where youth fall short is that they are murky about what the definitions of these DTR determinations are. What is marriage? What is dating? What is friendship? If we can define these terms with those we are interacting with, we can avoid unmet (and un-communicated) expectations.
Even with a clear vision, relationships are difficult. The pursuit of truth is about continued definitions. What is unity? What is conflict? How do we deal with conflict and why?
If we can break the chains of selfishness and learn how to pursue truth together, it will transform relationships.
What is The Definition?
So, the obvious question is what is the definition? How do we properly define love?
Pursuing truth is the simple solution to relationship problems. That is not to say it is the easy one! Searching for proper definitions is a challenging endeavor. Truth lies somewhere in the middle of all perspectives involved. It takes a lifetime of practice, trial, and pursuit to hone these definitions to their full splendor.
The salvation of your relationship is in the pursuit of truth. We know it already. Deep down inside, you can feel your walls going up. You can sense the unfairness in what you are offering and what you are asking for.
By pursuing definitions, we are chasing after the truth. And it is the truth that sets us free. If your relationship is suffering, you are missing, forgetting, or avoiding some truth. A truth that proper definitions will help you discover and rectify.