Football season is here! Let’s be honest, this is the time of year some of us were waiting on the edge of our seats for and others, well… not so much. In addition to the games, there is tailgating, Fantasy Leagues, online video gaming, and more! All of these things represent the spirit of the season! And, the reality is, all of these things are now being prioritized alongside everything else we have going on in our lives.
Whether it’s football, job commitments, long term hobbies, etc… anytime we have something in our life that demands our focus for a season, it competes with existing priorities. If not handled properly, these competing priorities can cause a great deal of stress, especially when it comes to relationships.
The Bible says, in Proverbs 27:23, “Know well the condition of your flocks, and give attention to your herds…” This means, even in the busiest of seasons, you must take care of your primary responsibilities in life. You can’t just put them on hold. As it pertains to relationships, when you are balancing priorities, you must be sure that you continue to nurture your love as a priority in your life.
Here’s how to ensure your relationships advance, even in the midst of competing priorities
1. Huddle Up – There will always be some outside factor or distraction that can interfere with the focus of your relationship. Whenever possible, I encourage you to take a moment to separate yourself from the noise and just focus on the one you love; make sure you are on the same page with how you will approach the situation before you.
2. Complete the Pass – Whenever you are on a path to succeed, opposition will always come your way. There will be disagreements, family issues, job troubles, etc… Even in those times, you should honor your commitments and obligations.
3. Run the Play – Don’t quit. Understand that someone else is dependent on you to do what you say you will do.
4. Recover Your Fumbles – We all make mistakes. Even with the best intentions, you will mess up in ways that could cause a setback for your relationship. When you mess up, you must not shrink to the sidelines to see how things are going to play out. Instead, you have to fight to recover. Move swiftly to resolve whatever took you off course.
5. Run Interference – If you don’t protect love, no one else will. When you are in a relationship, you have to be willing to fight for love. Regardless of what arises, are you ready to do what it takes to grow in the relationship; to move towards your goals?
6. Don’t Move the Goalposts – Your value system will help you stay focused on how to achieve success in your relationship. You must stand firm on your convictions and not waiver, just because times are hard. Your partner is affected by your actions. Consider them. Consider how changing your plans and flexing your value system will impact their life.
Love should be your greatest ally when it comes to balancing competing priorities. One of the biggest mistakes we can make is when we totally put the ones we love on hold, while we balance our seasonal priorities. Remember to have open and honest communication and let your partner know what your priorities are. This way, if you do have to be unavailable for a short season, they will understand. If you are on the same team, this communication should go a long way in helping avoid conflict down the road.
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