Have you heard the love story of Chrissy Teigen and John Legend?
Teigen was cast as his love interest for his music video “Stereo” and the rest is history. Except the brief blip where Legend tried to dump her ass citing that he “stressed and busy”. How did Chrissy handle it? She said “no.” In her exact words “he was on tour and his voice hurt and he was being a whiny face about everything and so yeah, I was like ‘no.’” Apparently it worked because they’re now married with two children.
Why are we regaling the brief break up of a musical icon and his supermodel wife? To prove that even the best, most solid relationships go through hardships. Take our very own Gina Trimarco and Rachel Pitts for example, this week they shared the details surrounding their almost break up.
You guys, relationships are hard.
But fret not Warners, it’s going to take more than a strongly worded email and an intense spat over podcast content to break up the Women Your Mother Warned You About. They got that love like Johnny and June.
What’s their secret? A solid foundation and a sense of humor. As Rachel once said, “it’s not like any of us is getting out of here alive.”
We know, we know, you’re thinking ‘that’s cool and all and I think I’m funny but how do you achieve that solid foundation part?’ Our tagline is ‘REAL, RAW, RELEVANT’ not ‘REAL, RAW, RELEVANT and SHROUDED IN MYSTERY’ so we thought we’d share a few pointers. Bullet points to help you lay the groundwork for successful relationships whether they’re personal or professional, romantic or platonic, besties or casual acquaintances, you get the idea.
ACCEPT CONFLICT AS THE STATUS QUO If you’re engaging with another human being you run the risk of experiencing conflict at some point in your interaction, whether it’s disagreeing over where to grab lunch or something more serious like which side of the #BlackLivesMatter movement you fall on. If you’re reading this blog you’ve probably realized by now that life isn’t always sunshine and rainbows and perfectly baked confetti cakes. Unless you’re starring in a romcom you can count on encountering challenges that aren’t part of some hilarious plot so accepting this as normal will allow you maintain more of a levelhead in the face of adversity.
GROW UP Even the best of us have dysfunctional and destructive behaviors that affect our relationships, especially that relationship with ourselves. Defensiveness, lack of emotional intelligence, poor communication skills, just to name a few and unless you’re completely delusional you know which of those you could improve on. Take some time to self-evaluate how you can bring your best self to every relationship. Everyone has room for growth, don’t be the asshole who always plays the blame game.
DON’T REWARD BAD BEHAVIOR “Psychology may explain bad behavior, but it doesn’t excuse it.” You might ‘understand’ why people do hurtful things to you (especially those of us who are true empaths) but this doesn’t excuse it. If those people aren’t also in a place where they’re constantly working on their own emotional intelligence you need to hand them their walking papers. In continuing to spend time with them you’re offering them positive reinforcement. Everyone knows the story of Pavlov and his dogs, don’t be dog food.
GIVE THEM SPACE Literally and figuratively. Even couples in the most loving relationships need alone time. But this goes beyond giving each other physical space while working on individual goals and doing your own thing. Giving your partner space should also extend into active listening, a technique that means you leave space for the other person in conversation and communication. You know that friend that always passively responds with some bullshit and you’re left wondering if they ever heard you in the first place or worse, takes every opportunity to interrupt you? Yeah, active listening is NOT that.
Rachel and Gina using Marco Polo. No, not the game that you used to play with your childhood friends in the pool, although if you’ve used that to navigate an argument we’d like to hear about it. We’re talking about the walkie talkie app, a modern version of the talking stick. As Gina explains it “Marco Polo allows you to speak your mind on video without being interrupted. And then the person watching you can take their time absorbing and listening and processing.”
So next time you find yourself going round and round with someone in your life and you’re not sure you’re actually being heard, tell them to get lost or if you feel like the relationship is worth salvaging, try Marco Polo!