Historical – How to Get the Support You Need from Your Romantic Partner

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Originally published on positiveimpactmazine.com on April 1, 2011

By: Tom Marcoux

Picture: Historical

“Why don’t I get any help at home
unless I get mad and yell?”

Relationships don’t have to be game.

You’ve undoubtedly heard a similar question or even asked it yourself. Imagine that you could get the support you need from your romantic partner—when you need it! It is possible to have the love life and the romantic relationship that you dream about. Effective communication skills form your path to get the support, romantic moments and, even ecstatic moments that you’d imagined at the start of your relationship. With a few simple shifts in your actions, you’ll master influencing your romantic partner to want to give you what you need. To get this support, I invite you to become an “ace.”

The A.C.E. process includes:

Act and drop “marbles”

Create reciprocity

Express the pure intention first

Act and drop “marbles”

Let’s face it. If you don’t take specific action, it’s easy for you to become burdened and overwhelmed with daily hurts and resentments. We’ll use the metaphor that these hurts and resentments are like marbles that we swallow. As the author Roger Mellot wrote, “Don’t you feel heavy and sick at the end of a day of swallowing marbles?”

Unfortunately, we tend to spit these marbles at our partners at precisely the wrong time—when we’re asking for help. So you need to “drop the marbles.” Writing in a journal can help you get rid of these marbles. Be sure to avoid re-reading your journal page that chronicles your “marbles.” If you re-read the page, it just like re-swallowing the marbles. Don’t do it. Get them out and feel “lighter.”

Create reciprocity

When you want your partner to do something, tune into how people tend to be receptive after they havefirst received something positive. In two words: give first. People tend to give in return and that makes the process reciprocal.

How do you know what your partner would appreciate? Ask this gentle question: In order for you to feel supported by me, what has to happen?

You can offer possible suggestions such as: How about if I take the kids on Thursday night and you can see a movie with your friends, and you take the kids on Saturday morning while I attend an aerobics class?”

Express the pure intention first

One night, I was working away while my sweetheart was relaxing and watching TV in the next room. I was feeling overwhelmed and later when she walked into the room, I felt like saying, “Where were you?”

Instead I said, “I missed you.” That was expressing the pure intention first. “Where were you?” —especially if delivered with an intense tone—would have likely started an argument.

When I asked her about the situation, she said, “Tom, I think you did a good job. It made me feel like I need to spend more time with you.”

To express your pure intention, you need to first discover it yourself. Often, my clients find writing in a journal helps. You also need to do a “turnaround” on your first reflexive comment. Here are some examples:

First Reflexive Comment: Nobody helps me around here until I yell.

Turn it around: Revised Version: I’d really appreciate some help. Would you rather take out the garbage or put some oil on the squeaky hinge on the backdoor?

First Reflexive Comment: You’re not spending enough time with the kids.

Turn it around: Revised Version: I feel Joey would like to play catch with you. How about I get take-out food while you take Joey to the park on Thursday or Friday evening?

The truth is that when you really want support, you need to be strategic in your methods of asking.

Remember, in our brains we have “mirror neurons.” That’s how watching a movie works: if the character is sad, the audience feels sadness, too. So before you ask for support, make sure that you get into a positive state of mind. Then your partner’s mirror neurons will be stimulated in a positive way. Be sure to revise your “first reflexive comment,” rehearse the positive version, and then gently ask for the support you need.

Tom Marcoux, America’s Communication Coach, is the author of 11 books that have been sold in 15 countries. Award-winning speaker, Tom guides CEOs and business owners in effective executive speaking. He discusses more methods for getting support and for bringing financial abundance into your romantic relationship in his book, 10 Seconds to Wealth: Master the Moment using Your Divine Gifts.

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Love Infinity (aka Charity) is a global influencer on a mission to share the power of unconditional love with people world-wide.

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