When I was asked to create my personal mission statement I decided I didn’t like the phrase “mission statement.” What I wanted was a “life purpose.” I don’t like being on a mission. It conjures up negatives for me like being forced and directed and it sounds like plans and goals and targets. Yuk! What I wanted was a life purpose that is true to the centralness of my being. Personally, my life purpose is to be the best person I can be and be in service to others. As I do that, my choices and actions flow from my center and are effortless. As I do that, nothing is a “have to” or a “should.” I take care of others and myself and I experience great satisfaction and fulfillment.
When I meet with couples I often ask them what their vision is together as I try to get at their life purpose. Some couples, for example, have decided to raise a child together, but what is the purpose and vision and style of that upbringing?
Through the years I have witnessed the most common struggles for couples being around money, parenting and sex. All of these are so complex and have so many issues and history attached to them that most couples struggle with at least one of them.
If your life purpose is to be, for example, a loving, spontaneous, passionate and vulnerable person, and you live it fully and your couple vision and purpose together is the same and you live that too, then imagine how the three most common struggles would melt away… You would be able to express your vulnerability about money, parenting and sex. You would be loving with each other about money, parenting and sex. You would be passionate about them. You would be spontaneous about them. You would be these ways to friends and family and your children. All of this would flow from the center of your being and the two of you would be in agreement that these are your highest ideals and you would live it together (and the little conflicts between you would seem insignificant). To be in agreement with your ideals is the greatest gift you can give each other, and then to the rest of your relationships.
I encourage you to spend time looking at your life purpose, and your partner’s life purpose, and get yourselves in alignment, by understanding the ultimate life purpose you have as a couple.
When you are mindful and focused, and you choose your actions from the clarity of a life purpose together, then the conflicts melt away.
Please give it a try. Most couples say that the little arguments become insignificant enough that they can laugh them off. When in doubt, ask yourselves if anyone will remember this argument in ten years anyway?
Until next time, thanks to my clients that allow me to let this material bubble up while in their presence.
Copyright © 2005 Russell Wilkie, MFT