I discovered, or re-discovered, something very important last week. When you get a little sideways with someone you love, set the feelings aside and go out together and have some fun.
When my husband and I were going through a rough time in our marriage, we discovered this tactic. Now, looking back, I credit it and the grace of God for getting us through intact. To be frank, there were times we really didn’t like each other any more. We had been fighting about the same things for so long we had forgotten all the reasons we fell in love. And yet in the midst of this, we could set all that aside, go out to dinner and have fun. How? We made rules about what we could and couldn’t talk about. The key was to keep the conversation about things that we weren’t fighting about. We looked for areas of agreement and we just had fun. We laughed, ate good food, had a little wine. The next day, we might be right back to fighting but those “escapes” away from the tension saved us.
So, last week, after a tense few days at the store, my mom and I were invited out to dinner with two vendors. On the drive to the restaurant, we avoided talking about our areas of disagreement and focused on things that were not difficult subjects. Once there, we ate good food, laughed with friends, talked about the retail business and had a little wine – well I did, mom doesn’t drink. At the end of the night the tension was gone and we had a pleasant ride home together.
So the moral of the story is to force yourself to set aside your differences with those you love and focus on relationship building. There will be plenty of time for arguments. Some things will get resolved and others won’t, but having a little fun can really help you make it through.