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Date Someone Opposite To You, If You Want To Grow In A Relationship

Date Someone Opposite To You, If You Want To Grow In A Relationship

It is said that opposites attract and in relationships this is especially true. It is natural to be attracted to individuals who are different from us – and somewhat exciting.

Some relationship experts believe that we are naturally drawn to individuals who have strengths that we are missing. They feel that we as humans, all posses an innate quest for completion. And, our attraction to an opposite personality could actually be our subconscious minds driving us towards becoming a more complete individual, by causing us to face the areas in life where we are weaker.

Learning how to truly love, appreciate and embrace each others’ differences is a major key to having a relationship that is long lasting and fulfilling while simultaneously experiencing personal growth. Because when two opposites function as a couple, they become a more well-rounded unit.

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How to make a relationship work when you are opposites:

Just as being opposites drew you to each other, it can also tear a relationship apart. Learning how to make a relationship work in spite of major differences is challenging however, the rewards can be so much more fruitful than if you and your partner were exactly alike.

Think of it this way; if both of you are exactly the same, one of you is un-necessary.

Opposites balance each other

If one half of the couple is loud, opinionated and a social butterfly and the other half is quiet, soft spoken and reserved–they can both learn from each other. They can not only help each other tone it down and amp it up, but they also can help each other understand how others may be affected by their behavior.

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If one person is a free spirit and lacks routine and the other is a planner and calculates every move, both parties would definitely benefit from adopting some of the habits of the other. Or if one is a spender and worry-free when it comes to financial responsibility and the other is extremely frugal and watches every penny–the chances of that couple having a life time of great experiences and a tidy retirement nest egg –are greatly increased.

We all need balance in our lives and having a partner that is your opposite automatically adds the missing piece of the equation.

Being with your polar opposite exposes you to a different point of view

Whether or not you agree with another person’s perspective is not nearly as important as being exposed to it. A lot of people feel that opposing–or just different–viewpoints automatically results in conflict, which is not entirely true. Being exposed to and considering a subject from a different angle doesn’t mean you have to agree or that you are weak minded and gullible. It does demonstrate your willingness to engage, understand, learn and grow.

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Seeing things through the eyes of another allows you to become more empathetic and relate to the world in a different way. It expands your mind, awakens a different set of senses and unleashes in you the power to make even better decisions.

Being with someone who is different hones your ability to compromise

Learning to compromise is not only key in how to make a relationship work but also in navigating life. Traditionally, when we think of compromise we think that we must give up something,  the other also person has to give up something and we both only get half of what we want. But truly effective compromise creates “win-win” situations. If you can learn to see your partners diverse needs, likes and desires as an opportunity for you both to be enriched, empowered and satisfied, you will thrive in the area of creating the “win-win.”

Compromise is driven by communication. When seeking to compromise one usually “gives in” to the other. But being with someone who is very different than you are affords you more opportunities to hone your communication skills and develop the creativity and ingenuity it takes to produce scenarios where everyone wins.  And that is not just good for your relationship–it’s just good, period.

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Learning how to make a relationship work with a person who is dissimilar is challenging. Challenges build character and fortitude. Don’t shy away from dating someone because they appear to be too different from you. You may be passing up an opportunity to experience true love, develop a deep appreciation for divergent viewpoints and the opportunity to become your best self.

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Denise Hill

Speech Writer/Senior Editor

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Last Updated on February 21, 2019

The Secret to Effective Conflict Resolution: The IBR Approach

The Secret to Effective Conflict Resolution: The IBR Approach

In business, in social relationships, in family… In whatever context conflict is always inevitable, especially when you are in the leader role. This role equals “make decisions for the best of majority” and the remaining are not amused. Conflicts arise.

Conflicts arise when we want to push for a better quality work but some members want to take a break from work.

Conflicts arise when we as citizens want more recreational facilities but the Government has to balance the needs to maintain tourism growth.

Conflicts are literally everywhere.

Avoiding Conflicts a No-No and Resolving Conflicts a Win-Win

Avoiding conflicts seem to be a viable option for us. The cruel fact is, it isn’t. Conflicts won’t walk away by themselves. They will, instead, escalate and haunt you back even more when we finally realize that’s no way we can let it be.

Moreover, avoiding conflicts will eventually intensify the misunderstanding among the involved parties. And the misunderstanding severely hinders open communication which later on the parties tend to keep things secret. This is obviously detrimental to teamwork.

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Some may view conflicts as the last step before arguments. And they thus leave it aside as if they never happen. This is not true.

Conflicts are the intersect point between different individuals with different opinions. And this does not necessarily lead to argument.

Instead, proper handling of conflicts can actually result in a win-win situation – both parties are pleased and allies are gained. A better understanding between each other and future conflicts are less likely to happen.

The IBR Approach to Resolve Conflicts

Here, we introduce to you an effective approach to resolve conflicts – the Interest-Based Relational (IBR) approach. The IBR approach was developed by Roger Fisher and William Ury in their 1981 book Getting to Yes. It stresses the importance of the separation between people and their emotions from the problem. Another focus of the approach is to build mutual understanding and respect as they strengthen bonds among parties and can ultimately help resolve conflicts in a harmonious way. The approach suggests a 6-step procedure for conflict resolution:

Step 1: Prioritize Good Relationships

How? Before addressing the problem or even starting the discussion, make it clear the conflict can result in a mutual trouble and through subsequent respectful negotiation the conflict can be resolved peacefully. And that brings the best outcome to the whole team by working together.

Why? It is easy to overlook own cause of the conflict and point the finger to the members with different opinions. With such a mindset, it is likely to blame rather than to listen to the others and fail to acknowledge the problem completely. Such a discussion manner will undermine the good relationships among the members and aggravate the problem.

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Example: Before discussion, stress that the problem is never one’s complete fault. Everyone is responsible for it. Then, it is important to point out our own involvement in the problem and state clearly we are here to listen to everyone’s opinions rather than accusing others.

Step 2: People Are NOT the Cause of Problem

How? State clearly the problem is never one-sided. Collaborative effort is needed. More importantly, note the problem should not be taken personally. We are not making accusations on persons but addressing the problem itself.

Why? Once things taken personally, everything will go out of control. People will become irrational and neglect others’ opinions. We are then unable to address the problem properly because we cannot grasp a fuller and clearer picture of the problem due to presumption.

Example: In spite of the confronting opinions, we have to emphasize that the problem is not a result of the persons but probably the different perspectives to view it. So, if we try to look at the problem from the other’s perspective, we may understand why there are varied opinions.

Step 3: Listen From ALL Stances

How? Do NOT blame others. It is of utmost importance. Ask for everyone’s opinions. It is important to let everyone feel that they contribute to the discussion. Tell them their involvement is essential to solve the problem and their effort is very much appreciated.

Why? None wants to be ignored. If one feels neglected, it is very likely for he/she to be aggressive. It is definitely not what we hope to see in a discussion. Acknowledging and being acknowledged are equally important. So, make sure everyone has equal opportunity to express their views. Also, realizing their opinions are not neglected, they will be more receptive to other opinions.

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Example: A little trick can played here: Invite others to talk first. It is an easy way to let others feel involved and ,more importantly, know their voices are heard. Also, we can show that we are actively listening to them by giving direct eye-contact and nodding. One important to note is that never interrupt anyone. Always let them finish first beforeanother one begins.

Step 4: Listen Comes First, Talk Follows

How? Ensure everyone has listened to one another points of view. It can be done by taking turn to speak and leaving the discussion part at last. State once again the problem is nothing personal and no accusation should be made.

Why? By turn-taking, everyone can finish talking and voices of all sides can be heard indiscriminantly. This can promote willingness to listen to opposing opinions.

Example: We can prepare pieces of paper with different numbers written on them. Then, ask different members to pick one and talk according to the sequence of the number. After everyone’s finished, advise everyone to use “I” more than “You” in the discussion period to avoid others thinking that it is an accusation.

Step 5: Understand the Facts, Then Address the Problem

How? List out ALL the facts first. Ask everyone to tell what they know about the problems.

Why? Sometimes your facts are unknown to the others while they may know something we don’t. Missing out on these facts could possibly lead to inaccurate capture of the problem. Also, different known facts can lead to different perception of the matter. It also helps everyone better understand the problem and can eventually help reach a solution.

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Example: While everyone is expressing their own views, ask them to write down everything they know that is true to the problem. As soon as everyone has finished, all facts can be noted and everyone’s understanding of the problem is raised.

Step 6: Solve the Problem Together

How? Knowing what everyone’s thinking, it is now time to resolve the conflict. Up to this point, everyone should have understood the problem better. So, it is everyone’s time to suggest some solutions. It is important not to have one giving all the solutions.

Why? Having everyone suggesting their solutions is important as they will not feel excluded and their opinions are considered. Besides, it may also generate more solutions that can better resolve the conflicts. Everyone will more likely be satisfied with the result.

Example: After discussion, ask all members to suggest any possible solutions and stress that all solutions are welcomed. State clearly that we are looking for the best outcomes for everyone’s sake rather than battling to win over one another. Then, evaluate all the solutions and pick the one that is in favor of everyone.

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