It’s four o’clock in the afternoon, and my mind is teaming up with the treadmill next to me busting my chops about working out. I’m in a phase at the moment of seeing exercise as a mortal enemy. It’s the holiday season, for cryin’ out loud! I think I’m entitled to a little pecan pie and dressing and Christmas cookies and…okay, so maybe more than a little. My jeans are nagging reminders that it’s time to break out of this sweat-averse frame of mind and “bring it!”
I’m reminded of how my annual ebb and flow of healthy eating and exercise is much like relationships. You can really get in a groove with a relationship, and things hum along. Then it becomes so familiar, so automatic, that it becomes a little cold. When you realize that coolness has set in, you slow your efforts to keep it moving forward. Next, it gets a bit stale, kind of like fruitcake that’s been left out too long. Now, you have reached a point of decision: do you just keep sitting around, making no effort, or do you get up and make a fresh start to revitalize the relationship? One choice leads to the potential death of the relationship; the other leads to growth and moving it forward.
Just like a healthy lifestyle, healthy relationships require constant attention. You’ve got to be willing to work hard and practice self-discipline to keep them going and growing. You must take initiative, reach out, go out of your way, allow inconvenience into your life, and put the other person first (are you sweating yet?). Like working on your body, working on your relationships builds strength and endurance into your life. What relationship do you need to invest energy into today? Who are you thinking about that needs you to “get off the couch?” The results make it worth the effort!
Wow! I may have just talked myself into putting in some time on that treadmill after all.