September 29, 2006, Newsletter Issue #120: Healthy Relationships: Balance

Tip of the Week

A romantic relationship is an important part of many people's lives -- but not the whole. Balance is about understanding where your relationship fits into the life you have. A person who's working 80 hours a week may genuinely not have time or energy for any kind of relationship at all. A person who's raising children must consider their needs as well as his or her own.

Before asking yourself what kind of relationship you want, it may be necessary to take a larger view and ask what kind of life you want. If you value marriage and family foremost, you may need to accept a lesser career goal. If you want a job that involves constant travel to dangerous places, you may need to accept that your relationships are not likely to be lasting.

When people take stock in this way, they often find the smallest slices of their lives devoted to the things they value most, such as creativity, spirituality, or spending time outdoors. Bringing these things more toward the center of your life is a gift of balance to yourself -- one that will make you a happier and more attractive partner.

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Barbara Gibson