Updated: Jun 7, 2020
It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s able to overlook all problems with a single bound – faster than a speeding relationship – it’s you!
People are inherently impatient. They rush most everything they do. But when it comes to relationships, that can be a very real problem.
People rush: in business, with friends, and with intimate partners. They go about things as if there is a real and discernible finish line that they need to get to.
In business, they rush to move up the ladder. In friendships, they rush to be BFFs; and in intimate relationships, they rush to be a couple, settle down, and get married.
The reality is that there is plenty of time to get to know one another and form a meaningful connection.
But … if we move too quickly, we tend to overlook issues that we need to be aware of.
Why are you in such a hurry?
I’ve met people who, on our first meeting, proclaimed that they would be my best friend without knowing anything about me at all. I’ve met people who, without putting the time in to learn the job that they were hired for, felt that they deserved more benefits, more pay, more vacation, and so on.
Just the other day, I was out to lunch. I was chatting with a waitress named Fallon. She told me that she was nineteen years old, she had just returned home after being away at college, and that she and her boyfriend of two years were planning on getting married. Luckily, she saw the warning signs and decided against going through with it.
People believe that the sooner that you start, the sooner you will complete the mission. But when it comes to relationships, what exactly is the end you are you rushing to? The fact is, if you begin any trip too soon, the end that you reach is likely to be very different than the one that you had hoped for or intended. Beginning a trip ill-prepared is worse than not taking the trip at all. You have the potential to cause harm, real damage, both to yourself and to others.
Relationships are not “one-and-done”
It’s true that the sooner that we start to clean the bathroom, the sooner that we will finish cleaning the bathroom. However, relationships are not a one-and-done task. Many things in life are ongoing, they don’t have a definitive end, and the more tasks that we add, the more we will have to do. It’s false to believe that once you’ve accomplished this one thing that you can simply move on to bigger and better things. This can actually be the very place where relationships begin to break down – where people take each other and the relationship for granted, or when they feel so overwhelmed with all that needs to be done to keep a relationship going that they feel like they’ve finally bitten off more than they can chew.
It’s choice, not chance
What about all of the people who will tell you: “Go for it! Opportunity only knocks once!” Well, in a word, they are wrong. First, if you aren’t ready, then this isn’t the opportunity for you.
So, how about making your own opportunities? Remember my saying: “It’s choice, not chance”.
You wouldn’t give the keys to your new car to a person who has never driven, and who hadn’t already learned to drive. That would just be foolish. They just aren’t ready for the “opportunity”.
How about thinking instead: the more that you invest into something, the more meaningful it will be to you. Taking the time to build a relationship adds value to that relationship.
Please don’t misunderstand: there are limits, and there are times when people are more ready than they themselves realize. That said, it’s better to be ready than to not be ready. And that is why it is important to know what it means and what it takes to be “ready”.
What’s the Rush challenge
This week’s challenge for you is to look at all of those times that you rushed into relationships or situations, and examine what the outcomes were, both good and bad. Be honest. There is a good reason why we have the saying “if only I knew then what I know now”. In other words, that statement means “I wish I had been more prepared”. So, come on, share your stories – the good, the bad, and the ugly – and others will do the same.
Good Together: your guide to healthy, happy relationships
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