The 5 big areas for conflict in relationships: Work (In and Out of the House)

Through continued commitment and loyalty we can tackle the ups and downs of our marriage together. Don’t allow the daily grind to become the focus to the exclusion of your marriage. The most important thing you can start doing is looking after yourself by focusing on these five areas. You don’t have to get it right the first time. This is part of life’s journey of learning and developing. You will get there if you are willing to invest the time and effort. Be proactive and do this for your marriage today.

Finances, Work (in and out of the house), Sex, In Laws and Children are the five big areas that dominate conflict in most relationships. Ensuring timely and open communication and pragmatic approaches to discussing issues that arise will ensure our relationship is sustained for the long-term.

All Relationships including those with your spouse and children (and others) tend towards entropy, disorder and dissolution. Marriage and divorces can be disastrous for those concerned, especially for children. Being intentional and principle centred can revitalise and enrich your marriage, ensuring your marriage is sustained and endures.

This series of blog posts explores each of the five big areas for conflict in relationships emphasising that by taking intentional steps to discuss and resolve these issues, they will have a lasting effect.

2. Work: It is easy to get caught up in the demands of life to find we are living our lives narrowly focusing on work or home, and we forget or neglect ourselves and our marriage. 

We are the instruments of our own performance and to be effective, we need to recognize the importance of balance and taking time to regularly refine and give attention to the following four areas in our lives: 1. Physical; 2. Intellectual; 3. Social and 4. Spiritual. The late Stephen Covey suggests consistent and continued refinement and attention to all four areas is crucial. 

For marriage, it is essential that we continually review and draw our attention to these four areas to ensure an upward spiral of growth, change, and continuous improvement. The importance of renewal in our lives can not be underestimated. Learning, growing and developing new capabilities and expanding on the old ones is the process through which marital harmony is made possible.

Attempting to balance exercise, nutrition and stress management (physical); by reading, visualising, planning and writing (Intellectual); focusing on clarifying values and our commitment, dedicating time to study, our faith and/or meditation (Spiritual); and through our service, being empathic, being synergistic and ensuring security (Social), will make a significant difference.

Within the house, the demands can be consuming. A practical approach is to list all you weekly household tasks and allocate ownership for each. Many of our expectations about task allocation will be based on our family of origin and who undertook certain tasks in our childhood. 

Discuss the task allocation that occurred in your family of origin and understand that there are ingrained assumptions etched into out brains – who did what and when. The challenge here is to uncover those assumptions and rescript an approach that works for your marriage. Remain open to change and decide an approach that is balanced for both you and your partner.

The Couple Checkup generates deep and productive conversations that couples would not otherwise have about their relationship.  These conversations restore insight and understanding about one another.  The Couple Checkup can help to revive a relationship and increase intimacy. 

The Couple Checkup is an online couple assessment based on the PREPARE/ENRICH couple inventories. The Checkup assessment and Checkup report are designed to go directly to couples at any stage of their relationship (dating, engaged or married). The online system allows for dynamic customization of the assessment to each couple based on how the couple answers background questions. The goal is for the Couple Checkup to reach a more diverse group of couples, to empower couples to deal with issues on their own and to emphasize prevention over remediation.

Couple Checkup with laptop

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