#99 - Are you "all in"?


How many of you do things in a half hearted way daily? Work? You go to work, put in minimal effort and do just enough to get by. Relationships? You enter into a relationship and initially you may make a good effort but, once you are settled in to a regular routine, you stop putting forth the effort that won your mate’s heart in the first place. Life? You go through life just doing the minimum you have to do.  You don’t give your families your full attention, you don’t take care of your health the way you should, you don’t maintain friendships the way you should and the list goes on and on.


What are you willing to do p to make your relationship work? Or, maybe a better question would be “What are you willing to do to take your relationship from “okay” to “great”?” That sounds like a really tough question and for some people, the immediate answer will be “Nothing unless my significant other is going to put in more effort too!” In an extraordinary relationship, these decisions will not be predicated on what the other does or does not do. In great relationships there is a natural give and take.  However, sometimes we do lose sight of what is important for any number of reasons.  We need to be willing to evaluate our relationships from time to time to make sure we are on track and not letting it slip away for lack of attention.


Over the past couple of weeks I’ve been blessed to see several couples showing great respect and love for each other.  Last weekend, I was heartened to see three older couples show their affection and respect for each other publicly. The youngest couple was probably in their late 50’s or early 60’s. They were sitting in front of me at an event and were holding hands for most of the time and at one point, she tastefully draped one leg over his and leaned into him in order to connect more fully with him.  Also at that same event there was another couple in their early 70’s. When they stood up for the music, they had their arms around each other. Truly, both these couples were very much in love. In the case of the third couple, they were walking out to their car. As they approached it, he walked around and opened his wife’s door so she could get in. They were “all in”.


The sad part of that story is that they were three couples in a group of nearly 200 people. I’m sure there were probably a few more that displayed similar gestures, but still, it was a very small percentage. Most couples are not all in. They don’t put in the maximum effort to make a relationship great.  In fact, most people I encounter tend to put in the minimum effort, if that. They’re afraid of being hurt, of being the only one to make an effort or worse yet, don’t understand how little it takes to move a relationship from good to great.


Take the time to talk to each other on a regular basis; communicate clearly and openly. Learn (or re-learn) what each other needs and doesn’t need in your relationship. Spend time together, treat each other with respect. Support one another and take interest in one another’s lives; health, family, work, etc. It’s not that hard, but it does take effort. Are you all in?  Are you willing to make the effort?


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