Agreement Two: We agree to visit and revisit our goals to ensure our relationship is growing together.
Connor and I are opposites.
Not in every way, but in the big ways. Our opposites usually come together to balance somewhere in the middle of our two extremes: he’s the analyst to my emotional dreamer. I’m the doer to his idea machine. He wants to play when I’d always work. I’m the spiritual mystic to his skeptic.
And while we approach life from opposite ends of the spectrum, we often meet close enough for a high-five. This is our harmony.
Looking down the future timeline of our relationship, we each have clear goals and dreams for ourselves. Connor’s a bodybuilder and wants to take the stage again to win his pro card. I’m focused on growing my business to fit the grand vision in my entrepreneurial brain.
It occurs to me that most of our goals are actually singularly focused- they’re for ourselves.
I use goals in all parts of my life- my yoga practice, my business, even my spiritual life. (Find some of my favorite free goal-setting tools here.) When I look at our partnership, the goals are more vague. The wedding next year might count- but that seems like a plan, not necessarily a goal. What are our shared goals? Don’t break up? Continue to love each other? I want something more concrete and actionable. (Coach-me loves goals).
In our shared goals conversation, we explore ways to create a stronger through-line to our relationship.
A shared focus (or two) gives our relationship some extra oomph, something in common that we can team up to tackle together. We’ll approach the goals in our own unique ways, but having a couple things to problem-solve together deepens our bond (especially since kids are not part of our goal-equation).
Our short-term goal:
More one on one nights where we go out and break our routine.
The comfort of our long-term relationship looks like this: Pajamas, food-prepped meals of veggies, chicken and rice. Games for him and a late-night work for me, netflix, chasing the cat, and bed around 10.
When did we stop being fun?! While I enjoy our routine (sometimes), I also crave deeper connection and spontaneity- we’re only 4 years in for cripes sake! Connor and I realize we tend to put our best foot forward if we’re having people over or meeting others out for a special occasion. When it’s just us, all enhancements come off and we’re back to our same-old sweatpants routine.
The sub-text here reads: our time isn’t special, and our time with others holds more weight.
The resulting short-term goal is one night per week where we break the mold… No PJ’s (at least not right away) and we’ll explore ways to make our time intentional and interesting.
The latter part of this conversation is about long-term goals. Much to my surprise and delight, we agree upon a shared focus on Financial Independence (happy dance!!)
This will become the focus post-wedding next year. I’m delighted to find out Connor wants to pursue financial independence too (albeit for slightly different reasons). Money can stress and break a relationship, and it means the world to me that we’re even kind of on the same page. This means when we’re done paying for this wedding, we’ll focus on paying off our house, beefing up our retirement accounts, and smart investing. (The excitement around this [for me] is right up there with seeing glitter and eating cake- I’m PUMPED).
I realize we can want the same thing for different reasons, and approach that focus in our individual ways- and that’s healthy.
Motivations are highly individual and what drives him surely doesn’t drive me. I’m determined to create security and safety (with dollars) in order to more fully show up in the world and make a difference through my business. Connor wants to leave behind a legacy, and share his money meaningfully after he’s gone. I guess we both want a legacy. While they look different, our legacies are accomplished with the same unifying long-term goal: Make $, and pour it back into humanity in a meaningful way.
These partnership conversations remind us to recognize and reconcile our differences in order to meet in a middle ground and play.
Although we’re opposite in SO many ways, we have very strong through-lines that bind us together. What a cool way to find out they’re there and solidify them with our second partnership agreement. 😉