When we participate in a game we normally recognize and accept that there are rules, competitiveness and keeping score. These three things are the basic framework of any game and they work well for a game structure.
Many people approach relationships with the same type of structure. Many people build their relationships with the structure of a game with rules, competitiveness and keeping score. Works great for games, not so well for building successful long term relationships.
If competitiveness was for things like who did the dishes first or who took the garbage out to the curb first it would probably help a relationship, however competitiveness in a relationship is usually about who has more power in the relationship, who’s on top, who has control. When we become concerned with who has the power we are navigating our relationship with our ego at the helm. Our ego loves to be in charge and to win or be on top at any cost. Our ego does not care so much about the other person’s needs or feelings; rather our ego is all about itself. When we compete for power in a relationship brick by brick we build walls which become limitations for the growth of our relationship.
Rules, rules, rules! Most relationships have spoken and unspoken rules.
Some may say there must be rules to maintain a healthy structure of a relationship, however when we are doing or not doing things within a relationship because of rules, we are not operating from our heart, we are not being true to our self or our relationship. An example would be, in most long term relationships there is a spoken or unspoken rule that no major purchases will be made without consulting with the other person. The person who usually breaks this rule is the person who feels obligated by this rule. A person in this situation tends to rebel and break the rule. In a loving, spiritual relationship the rule is not necessary because we are living from our heart and we are living our relationship from our spirit and it is natural for us to want to discuss this type of decision and make the decision based on what is best for the whole. We do this because we are not separate from our relationship; there is no separation and therefore no need for rigid rules.
When we are the relationship and not separate from it there is no desire to keep score. Keeping score is a product of the ego driven mind. The ego loves to keep score and use the scoreboard as a weapon to manipulate the other person or to justify our behavior. When we keep score we are saying look how many times I have done this or how many times you have done that. Keeping score is for games. In relationships we should do what we do because we desire to do so not because we are trying to one up the other person or not do something because it is not our turn. Keeping score creates a mentality of us against them and in the end builds distance between people rather than bringing people together.
When we understand that our relationships are not to be played like a game we begin to accept and to allow each other to be and we allow an “us” to grow. In a loving long term relationship, we can simply be and not get caught up in the game like mentality that the ego loves to play.
Today I ask you to place aside the rules, the competitiveness and the score keeping and allow the love which bubbles within you to lead your relationship. You will be amazed at the difference this will make in all aspects of your relationship. You will quickly become aware that once you quit approaching relationships as a game that you will feel less frustrated and you will find peace within your relationship and yourself that you have not felt in a long time.