By Abby Glaser
I was listening to a podcast recently where the guest shared something called the “10-7-5 Rule”. The gist of it is that each person has ten defining moments, seven critical choices and five pivotal people who impact who they are.
Defining moments, both positive and negative, are events who have changed or redefined who we are. Many of those are situations out of our control and our response to them is what changes us. Critical choices, also positive or negative, have affected our life up until today and set the path for our future.
Lastly, five pivotal people are individuals who have made an indelible mark on our lives. That latter category has had me thinking the most.
As I was thinking through each of these categories and applying them to my own history, I realized that for most of us our partner falls in that last category. The question we may ask ourselves is: has my spouse been a positive or a negative pivotal person? Have I been for them?
There are few people in our lives that can impact and influence us as much as the ones who live with us day after day. Do those relationships allow us to grow and live as our authentic selves or do they steer us into a daily routine of secrets, shame, guilt, fear or a host of other undesirable experiences?
It might be easy for most of us to answer this question from our own perspective but I challenge you instead to look in the mirror and ask yourself these three questions:
If you find yourself unable to answer any of these questions, I encourage you to think about asking your partner. If you and your partner have good communication skills and a history of safe sharing, go for it!
If you are worried about how the conversation may go, think about asking a trusted pastor or counselor to help.
The most important key is asking these questions with an open heart and mind with the desire to hear what your partner needs from you. You just might be surprised by their answers!
Lavern & Ronda Nissley are co-directors of Encompass. Married since 1978, both enjoy coffee, riding their tandem bicycle and working together to build strong relationships.