What you want in a Relationship?

“I want you to…” is a very common phrase in relationships.

October 30, 2021

“I want you to…” is a very common phrase in relationships.

That phase is also often unsaid, but nevertheless thought, in our relationships.

And there are two mostly unthought or unnoticed things about that phrase that disempowers, and even undermines, relationships.

First, the basic meaning of want or wanting is lacking or missing. Expressing a want is actually reporting on what’s missing. And it often implies that someone else - a mate, partner, colleague, or friend - should provide what’s missing. However, it does not initiate action to provide what’s missing. In fact, it actually lays the initiation of action on another or others. Quite subtly, it assigns the responsibility of providing what’s missing to another.

Secondly, another meaning of want or wanting is desire or desiring. If you look at the etymology (the origin and development) of the word desire, you find it’s rooted in “[to await] from the stars.” So, again, there is a lack of responsibility for initiating action to produce what is wanted. Hoping becomes prevalent in the relationship. And often, hoping morphs into expecting, which is a set-up for disappointment and upset.        

Moving from wanting and desiring to creating and producing - which it could be said is what relationships are really all about - is accomplished by making requests. Requesting and promising (in response to a request) is action-based speaking - as contrasted to reporting. There is no reporting in requesting and promising - unless you add “because…” so as to attempt to avoid being responsible for the action.

Requesting - and listening for promising (including declining and counteroffering) rather than wanting - provides/produces the opportunity for fulfillment in a relationship. 

A powerful and satisfying  relationship is characterized by making requests and promises, and fulfilling the requests and promises together.

We request that you read this article as many times as it takes for you to “get it”.

Our best wishes,
Lon&Sandy

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