Coach of the Month – Jackie Walker

Do you ever feel that you work so hard during the day that the thought of working on your relationship is one thing too many for you to have to pay attention to? Just the thought of juggling all the roles we have landed ourselves might bring the strongest of us to despair.

One of the first things many forget to pay attention to is their personal relationship. It’s not always a problem of course as some people manage to juggle their lives easily. For some though, home becomes a place to go at the end of a work day. More often than not, an air of complacency and expectation sets in and this is where relationships end up with resentment due to lack of communication.

Many of us are more equipped and trained for the mental world of juggling balance sheets, marketing information and sales targets than we are at the emotional world of the home. We might be used to keeping emotions out of our decision making, and find it hard to turn them back on again. After all we’re not exactly plumbed with taps are we!

There are various stages to relationship success and the first is to remember that like anything else you are involved in, it needs your attention. Of course it’s not only your attention it needs, but your partner’s too.

As a Director of your relationship, it might be worthwhile taking a peek in the various departments of Relationship Plc before heading to the emotional stages which are expected as part of the home environment.

Research Department
What is the purpose of your relationship? You wouldn’t launch a business product or service without knowing a bit about the target market, its needs and wants. Is your market research up to date? Do you both want the same thing? Is what you give what they want and vice versa?

Marketing Department
You might also want to think about packaging and how to take it to market. The right kind of tone in your message is critical, as are the words you use. The colours and way you package the product for attractiveness can work wonders. Are you marketing and selling yourself to your partner in a light which they find attractive. Do you speak in words they understand? Do you communicate regularly and keep them up to date with developments.

Finance Department
What if you thought about the financial implications and the balance sheet, how well do you know your family’s income and expenditure? Are there savings which need to be made, is there a petty cash allowance, how are purchases accounted for. Who assumes responsibility as the financial director, are they happy to do so?

Personnel Department
When did you and your partner last give one another job appraisals? In the time you’ve been together have you both fallen into roles/routines which are outdated. Are there things about which you would like to give feedback to one another in a safe environment? Have you actually asked your partner what they need and want in a relationship or have you made assumptions based on old data?

Logistics Department
How does your relationship work logistically? Is there time enough for everyone involved? Do there need to be changes? How can these be made?

IT Department
Information is key and the delivery of the information in the right byte size chunks is useful! Are you giving your partner information in the way they can download it effectively? Do they need a system upgrade, or do you need to slow down?

Do you back up your good memories regularly? Are you clear on what is needed to create new memories?

Taking the time to regularly appraise yourself of the nuts and bolts in your relationship, will save you from making assumptions and having expectations. Just as in a business setting, open communication is needed. With open communication there are fewer surprises and disappointments.

For 2011, how could you pay attention to your relationship? In future articles, I’ll help you remember that home life is not business life and how to differentiate between the two.

If you have any specific questions about your relationship, please contact me via my website

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