Sep 30, 2014

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Loving Your Partner “As Is”

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While house hunting several years ago, we came upon an old house for sale.

It was being sold “as is” – no negotiations allowed, take it or leave it.

Despite a few broken windows, linoleum on the floor, old wall paper, and some other aesthetics issues, I fell in love with the house.  A review of previous inspection reports showed that the old house had a solid foundation and a strong construction.  It felt safe being there, as if the house could fully withstand any unpredictable force of nature.

Had we not taken the time to appreciate the core of this house – what really matters – we may had been side-blinded by its flaws and poor aesthetic appearance.

How solid is your partner?

It is so easy to become distracted by the short-comings and flaws we see in our partners.

We may focus on their behaviors, or the way they dress, or the funny way they talk. We may express criticism, present a laundry list of things we dislike about them, and how they could be better.

The next step is usually our desire to change them, to become who we want them to be.  We are driven by this goal, and consumed by the likely frustration and resentment in this irrational process.

The real question becomes —  If your partner could change, then what? Would that really solve your problems?   Would that make you happy?

If you’re struggling with your feelings about your partner, these questions might help you:

How solid is your partner’s personal foundation?

Personal qualities, character, values and philosophy are at the core of human beings:

  • What personal qualities do you admire most about your partner?
  • Is he a man of character?
  • What values are at his core?  Are they in sync with yours?
  • Do you respect the way he understand life, love and humanity?
  • Do you feel safe with him?  Cared for?  Does he respect you?
  • Do “you” respect him?  Admire him?

Does your partner meet your essential needs?

Fundamentally, we all need to feel safe, loved and respected:

  • Does your partner makes you feel safe?
  • Does he makes you feel loved?
  • Does he respect you?  Admires you?

If your partner is a man of strength and solid qualities (and the right person for you) then pause and ask yourself: why, then, am I distracted by the smaller things?

Sometimes we project onto others what we dislike about ourselves.  Other times we just can’t allow ourselves to appreciate what we have, so we go around finding faults.  Whatever your personal reason for narrowing-in on insignificant flaws and faults, you have the ability and the power to redirect your attention, to reassess what is important, and to appreciate your partner just the way he is…

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Angélica Pérez-Litwin

Angélica Pérez-Litwin

Dr. Perez-Litwin is the Founder & CEO of ELLA Leadership Institute, a multi-platform professional development organization designed to advance the careers and leadership of women. She's the creative force behind the LATINAS THINK BIG™ national tour, sponsored and live-streamed by Google.

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Comments

  1. Angelica –

    Thank you for this beautiful and honest post.

    I was one of those women that had a litany of “must-haves” for every man I dated when I was single.

    Then I met my now husband – who I had initially dismissed because he didn’t have the “stuff” I thought necessary and a lot of the “stuff” I thumbed my nose at before.

    But underneath it all, he is a man of character, strength, a strong work ethic and has the biggest heart. These are just a few of the foundations that led me to fall in love and ‘finally’ marry.

    Is he perfect? No – but neither am I. But together, as he stated on the day we were married, we make the best team.

  2. What a beautiful post. I agree with accepting your partner “as-is”. Great notion :-) I will be sure to share it.

  3. I love this post…many times we emphasize the negative aspects of our relationship or our partner. We should focus on the positive things, specially if our partners” faults are manageable.

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