When you’ve finally found that special person to share your life with you might want to ask yourselves what your hopes and dreams are for your future together. Do your visions align? Are there versions of yourself you can improve on and are there possibilities you haven’t considered? These are important questions that can enrich your journey as a couple. In our continuing series on the cornerstones of healthy relationships this one on the the power of a common vision will definitely contribute to the longevity of your relationship.
Relationships are the fertile soil in which our vulnerability, empathy, and love can truly flourish and setting meaningful goals becomes a pivotal step on this transformative journey.
Always consider your lifestyle preferences, economic aspirations, children, travel, community, spirituality, physical well being … the list goes on and on. The importance of this is to set yourselves up for a vibrant future together. Most people don’t really think that far ahead, but time can slip away from us and the decisions we make now will have an impact tomorrow. Consider the importance of aging well together both physically and mentally as individuals and as a couple.
As far as lifestyle there are so many things to consider if you really want to continue to grow as a couple.
Some people are minimalists and hate clutter, while others are more relaxed about “collecting” stuff. Are you neat freaks? Messy creatives? Will you have pets? Do you like to travel? Do you like to get out and about or are you homebodies? Will you have people over for dinner and throw parties or are you more private? Are you early birds or night owls? These are the things that become issues when you share a home together and can seem small at first but can really cause friction in the long run. And while you may not align on some of these things, it is necessary to come to agreements on managing those differences.
Money is a sensitive issue for a lot of people and can really throw a wrench in things if there isn’t an understanding around how you both view its importance in your lives. A lot of couples prefer to keep their finances separate, while others have a more “what’s mine is yours” approach. Some are careful with money while others are much freer with it. Think about what you spend most of your money on and it will also tell you a lot about what you value.
One of the biggest areas of alignment or a real dealbreaker for some, is the desire to raise children together.
If you’ve decided not to have children then this is easy. The world is your oyster and you will have all the time in the world to invest in each other and your dreams together. Have fun! But for those of you with children in your future you will find this changes everything! There are a whole host of decisions around raising children that you really won’t know until you have them. You might have an idea about what kind of a parent you might be, super strict or free range, maybe helicopter parents or nanny employers. The inner workings of raising a family couldn’t be more vast and dynamic. Unconditional love is really the most important thing but discussing different parenting styles can be very enlightening.
Traveling for work and time separated from a loved one is always something that needs to be managed.
If one or both of you travel a lot for work this can be very hard on the relationship. It helps if this is understood in the beginning and rules are put in place that make it more palatable and easier to maintain trust and intimacy. Checking in daily and picking up slack when one is at home, making quality time for each other and taking separate trips together can make the time apart a little more manageable. This becomes an even bigger factor when raising children.
Some people are more religious and spiritual than others. How important are religion and spirituality to you? Can you share a life with someone who doesn’t share the same outlook as you do? This is such a fascinating conversation to have and by no means does it need to be a deal breaker. Navigating this part of your lives successfully will only lead to a deeper understanding of each other and manifest in more unconditional love and acceptance.
How important is community to each of you and giving back through philanthropy or volunteering? What social issues are important to you? Are there non-profit organizations that you feel equally passionate about that you can invest in together? Our identities as couples become stronger when we show our unity to the world and get involved in community for the greater good.
Planting seeds early in your relationship, aligning goals and creating a common vision will inspire you and give you a hopeful outlook on your future together.
The beauty of this insightful practice is that it can reveal aspects of ourselves we might not have explored otherwise. It encourages us to stretch beyond our comfort zones and strive to become better versions of ourselves. These shared values become the compass that guides us through life’s challenges and triumphs.
As you look out to the horizon as a couple in the same direction, you commit to a journey, not a destination. It’s the process of discovery that will pave the way for an enriching life together.
Here at Kelleher International Matchmaking Service we nurture these visions for all of our members as we guide them on their journeys to finding their life partners.