September 26, 2013 / In Relationships, Set The Rules Early
In a relationship, don't behave in a way that you won't be able to sustain.
There are so many articles out there about dating and seduction advice that I thought it would be nice to write an article about relationships. At the end of the day, it is not reasonable to believe that all men only want to sleep with as many women as possible. Some men; perhaps most men, eventually want to end up in a fulfilling long term relationship with someone they truly love.
Relationships are not easy
However, even with your soul mate, with your true love, relationships are not easy. Living with someone day in and day out, going through good times and bad times with the same person, the added pressures of a family (both existing and future), etc. can all place a tremendous burden on the essence of a long term relationship. In order to help a relationship succeed, there is one very simple yet powerful "rule" I advocate all men (and women!) to adhere to: Set the rules early.
Set the rules early
What do I mean by setting the rules early? Simple. Setting the rules early means thinking long term about the relationship and establishing a framework for the relationship to succeed long term early on in the process. Don’t pretend to be someone you are not and don’t pretend to be willing to do things you will not be willing to do in the long term.
For example, if you hate cleaning the apartment and you know it is something that you simply will not be able to do over the long term, make that known right away! Don’t buy a butler outfit (or french maid costume if you are into that kind of thing) and start walking around your partner with a mop and a bucket of water because you think your partner will appreciate it. You need to know your limitations and don’t send wrong messages about who you are and what you are willing to do for the relationship.
The example I gave is a concrete one about a specific task. These "rules" are important to establish early. However, perhaps the most important rules to establish early in a relationship are the emotional ones and intangible ones. You need to be very open with who you are emotionally early on in a relationship and not handle emotional events in a way that isn’t consistent with who you are.
People can change, but it’s easier to be who you are
Unless you plan on completely changing who you are which is not impossible despite the popular phrase "people don’t change", send the right messages early! Do you have certain quirks that make you react to certain stimuli in an unusual manner. Put it out there before it is too late! Do you really dislike a certain type of behavior in your partner? Make it known very early; it could be that this behavior isn’t something innate to your partner but that they simply don’t know their actions annoy you!
A poor balance of power will destroy almost any relationship
Lastly, setting the rules in a relationship early is important to establish a balance of power that will allow the relationship to sustain itself. One of the biggest issues I have seen in relationships occur when there is an imbalance of power. Either the man or the woman dictate the majority of the terms of the relationship. A relationship of this nature is pretty much doomed to fail. Establish a balance of power early on. For instance, If you think your partner is becoming increasingly bossy or demanding, put your foot down EARLY and firmly.
How realistic is this?
You may be wondering if my advice here is realistic: "I can’t just tell my girlfriend of a month that I am a lazy bum and the only reason I have been doing chores around the house is to please her, she’ll dump me!" is a very common concern. So is: "My girlfriend asks me to do things I think are unreasonable, but I really love her and am afraid that if I put my foot down she may grow cold and dump me."
Don’t be afraid to call their bluff!
Both of those concerns are very common and warranted. However, my advice here is simple: "Call their bluff!" I will have a whole article on this in the future, but if your girlfriend, fiancee, or wife really love you, they will appreciate your candor and likely change their behavior before they leave you. Naturally, if you were faking about your entire personality all this time and in reality you are a boring, lazy, and cruel slob you will probably get dumped, and deservedly so. This isn’t common though, in general, relationships make or break due to a growing imbalance of power and in-congruence between personality and behavior due to an accumulation of little things that are left to fester as opposed to being addressed and remedied immediately. Don’t make that mistake in your relationship!