In a recent article, my friend professional speaker extraordinaire Mark Sanborn wrote about relationships. He said, “Some of my best relationships … challenge me intellectually and spiritually. Scott Peck believed that love was about the commitment to another’s growth, and that makes sense to me.”
I agree! I find potential suitors’ conversations uninteresting that mostly discuss the weather. If I try to take the conversation deeper and he doesn’t want to go there, that is a good sign this guy isn’t for me. I can give him grace if he says he’s tired and doesn’t want to think that hard, but if he doesn’t ever want to discuss anything thought provoking, I’m not willing to spend my time that way.
During the 2.5 hour drive with the golf addict, he was complaining about the traffic. Since there was nothing we could do about the traffic, I said, “Let’s play a game. My mastermind group did this interesting exercise. We each listed 5 books, CDs and DVDs that we’d want to have if we were stranded on a desert island — with enough batteries to keep the DVD/CD player going. What would be some of your choices?” He said he didn’t want to think that hard.
This wasn’t the first (nor last) time he’d avoided a conversation that required more than “reporting” (weather, work, etc.).
I love it when I can discuss topics that get me to think and perhaps change my perspective. I don’t like obnoxious, in-your-face discussions, but ones that are sane and rational and you can be heard without being treated like you’re an idiot for thinking a certain way. And I like hearing perspectives that are different than my own.
However, some people don’t look for that in a date. They just want to have a good time, which for some, apparently means talking about things that I find uninteresting and unimportant. Of course, there is always a certain amount of “How was your day?” kind of conversation in any close relationship. But if that is the main course of conversation, it is like subsisting on only sugar. It is mind-numbing when your body really wants — perhaps craves — more nutritious nourishment.
And what about what Mark says Scott Peck believed, that love is about the commitment to another’s growth? Do you believe that? I do. I want my partner to help me grow and I want a partner who is open to my encouraging and supporting him to grow. That doesn’t mean we nag each other when we see a habit we don’t like. It means we share what we want to work on and tell the other how s/he can support us in making changes. It also means s/he celebrates with us when we make those changes or experience growth.
What’s your expectation about your guy and growth?
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