In all my time pondering this universe you would have thought I would’ve done better. I always meant to. The sad fact is that with all my deep-thought dives I’ve only ever recovered one secret to life. Hooked a cable to it and winched it up. It’s not a bad find. I haven’t cleared away all the rust and seaweed, but maybe there’s still something we can glean from it.
Contracting a Relationship
It’s about relationships. You may have experienced them. If you’re unlucky enough to contract one they can be tough to navigate. The secret relies on the old “two sides of the same coin” idea. You see, the person you like or love (e.g., significant other, friend, family, coworker, reality tv star) will always have an amazing quality that draws you into them. A trait you find irresistible. Nothing new there, right? We’re getting to it.
So that same person will always have a quirk that drives you insane at times. It can almost be a dealbreaker. And here’s the secret! That terrible quality you can’t stand is linked to that fantastic quality you love to death. The practical interpretation? You will struggle up a sheer cliff face trying to change the bad in a person all the while not realizing those foibles are tied intrinsically to the great traits you like about them.
You can’t change one without the other. Good luck finding any middle ground.
(One of my minor wisdom gems: There really is no middle ground in life. Rarely any happy mediums. If you find one…a person…he or she may be a unicorn. Hang on to that person)
Clinical Examples of Relationships
Let’s put an example up on the overhead projector. Say you had a significant other and she had the great quality of being a homebody just like you. The both of you liked to curl up at home, snack and watch a reasonably priced streaming service with a mid-sized dog lying at your feet. So she doesn’t crave the nightlife, doesn’t have a lot of girlfriends. That’s a preferred quality in your book. You love that part of it, but that great trait has a doppelganger. The opposite that proves the rule.
The mirror-universe version of her personality is that she also doesn’t have many friends. You’re it for her. So on the rare night you’ve made plans with other friends…not so fast…you need to worry about her entertainment and snacks. What she’s doing? And if you try to change those instincts (encourage her to make friends…have a girls’ night out) then you’ve endangered the opposite quality you love about her. That she likes to stay home with you and doesn’t mind that you wear old-style sweatpants.
And that’s it. The yin and yang of life. It can apply to anything in a person’s DNA. Outgoing vs. Withdrawn. Type A vs. Type B. Active vs. Relaxed. Cheerleader vs. Library dweller. Likes Zombie Movies vs. Downton Abbey cosplay enthusiast. Let me know what combinations you find out in the natural world.
(In the blockbuster sequel to this article here we look at the choice you’ll face now that you know this secret of personality and the choice others will have to make about you)
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