Monday, January 06, 2003

The Same Page

In relationships at all stages, when one person is not on "the same page" as another, it causes tension of various sorts. It sounds simple, but so often that idea is lost.

When two people are getting to know each other initially, and one's interest is greater than the other, it can lead to a withdrawal by the party with less interest, and feelings of disappointment by the party with the greater amount of interest. Or worse, the one with the lesser interest can end up being carried along further than they wish if they lack the fortitude or assertiveness to speak up about that gap. The effects might be manifest in small ways, but unless that gap surfaces and is dealt with, there is a price to pay later. In contrast, when both parties have a very similar level of interest and hope, connections build on themselves, expanding in all directions. Refer to one of the thousands of love songs that cover this phenomenon to get more of a sense of the power of such harmonious aims.

In an established relationship, when one person decides that things need to change, or more drastically, that things are ending, it's likely that the other will be caught by surprise by that. The one person has been mulling over the thoughts about the change for however long, considering and reconsidering alternatives. The other person learns of this at some late stage and then has to confront a series of thoughts one by one that the first person has already dealt with. They can catch up, but often do not.

I remember years ago when these concepts were being covered (in a dry and dusty fashion) in Social Psychology class. But such concepts can come alive when you expericence them in your life and the lives of those around you. My not-so-heady conclusion here is that it is a very good thing to be "on the same page" and worth striving for. Knowing that the way you view where things are, where they're going, and where you want them to go are in harmony can make a world of difference.


Post a Comment

<< Home