Humor is often the very best medicine, especially between partners who have been together for many years. This applies to both partners in business. and of course in life.
My online friend Linda Bernstein @wordwhacker, wrote a post recently “9 Things You Should Never Say To Your Partner”. This post is both fun and revealing, and I recommend you do what I did; bring it up (in a nice way of course!), all nine points, with YOUR partner, and ask him or her if you are guilty of any or all. I did just that, and even added one to Linda’s list.
Warning, if you are allergic to laughing, be careful! And if you don’t laugh…………
Number1: The “should” factor: “yes” he said I am guilty as charged! And I certainly know I’ve overstepped the bounds when I get ”YES, Mother” fired straight back at me between the eyes!
If you are not following along with Linda’s post, I suggest you do.
Number2: The “so hot” factor. We agree that like fine wine and a good brie, we just keep on getting better! After 22 years, we still spend hours talking, exchanging views, and of course bantering back and forth. It only gets better, and makes our friends & clients crack up to see us in action!
Number3: The “remember” factor. Lucky me, I was forewarned about this! It was not long after we met that he said casually; “I have a confession to make…”… First thought; “OMG, “he lives with his mother”; “he’s on the run from the IRS”, or ”he wants to borrow a lot of money”…. but he continued sheepishly “I have a bit of short term memory loss”. “Whew, is that all…?” So thinking back to this every time it happens…….I am grateful that this is all!
Number4: The appropriate “fashion” factor. I have to admit, I am the guilty one here. Confession; I dress appropriately, however he seems to have a less than perfect idea how to fit the “fashion statement” with the occasion. So (don’t laugh) this means he takes twice as long as I do to get ready, and tries on 3 or more scenarios, often changing to the final one just before we get in the car. However, the end result is always fabulous (well, OK anyway….)!
Number5: The “hair” factor. We had to really laugh about this one, as he shaved his head 7 years ago when we were consulting for a young silicon valley start up team in the mobile security space. His motivation was to develop and maintain a ‘comfort level’ with a team 25+ years his junior, looking “cool” shaven, rather than the gray-haired & bearded ‘professorial’. My reaction “what happened to the man I fell in love with XX years ago”! (bite your tongue CASUDI)
Number6: The “Spanx” factor. Guilty, but only for pointing out that there is also “Manx”. (CASUDI bite your tongue, again!)
Number7: “The extravagance” factor. This is where I am truly lucky, we share obsessions, and BTW oriental rugs is one of them! Even if one of us breaks a “budget” agreement (not hard with the prancing horse), this is usually soon forgiven, though always reminded about often!
Number8: The “just like your parent factor”. This happened when my partner was under the influence of drugs; (chemo) for treatment of aggressive Lymphoma! Scary for me; he took on the worst traits of his curmudgeon of a father; obnoxious, bigoted and (even more) highly opinionated. Had it been any more than drug-induced temporary insanity, I likely would have been gone. When the occasional minor “dad valence” rears its ugly head, all I have to ask, is he suffering from “chemo brain?” and he smiles and gets back on track, after we share a good laugh of course! It could have been so much worse…….
Number9: the blue pill factor. Not applicable but we’ll keep it in mind
Number10: The “You don’t listen” factor. When you don’t hear or you choose not to hear. This also involves the “remember” factor…. “I told you the cats don’t like FancyFeast marinated morsels…so why do you bring back a dozen cans of what I just said not to?” “When I say mega toilet rolls I don’t mean those wimpy little ones that only last a day”, weren’t you listening”…Of course, his excuse is “remember my hearing loss from all those years of loud race cars!”
Nonetheless, as a business partner he always comes through!
No, the client loved it!
After reading Linda’s post and then writing this one, which is actually my comment on her post for NextAvenue, these are my takeaways:
• Show appreciation often
• Put the right spin on what you say (or bite your tongue!)
• Laugh about the small issues; humor is the best medicine.
• Bring your humor to the bigger issues, work hard to resolve!
• Discuss this list with your life partner, and laugh a lot. Or try it on your business partner or co-founder and resolve any issues you might have with humor!
CASUDI Designing Success