So often I get the vibe that relationships are often based off of a “what can I get” philosophy rather than the divinely directed “what can I give” philosophy. (Although I will readily admit that I am frequently guilty of the “what can I get?” philosophy myself.)

There is a fundamental problem with the “what can I get?” philosophy: True happiness only comes through the giving of oneself, not the receiving or “getting” from others. With that in mind, why do we often think that happiness is found in receiving? We think about getting that new techno gadget, or that awesome car, or that outfit when we find after obtaining it that it doesn’t satisfy our desire to “get”. I experienced this recently: I have wanted an iPad for a long time. When I finally got one, I noticed that a huge hole in my life wasn’t suddenly filled, in fact I probably thought I would be more pleased with it. Before I obtained it it was an amazing piece of work, a masterpiece of engineering. The best tablet available in the market. Even with all these things after a day or so I was already finding flaws in the “best” that this world had to offer.

I know you’re thinking… “ok, an iPad, really? What relevance if any does this have?” Well, I think sometimes in dating and courtship we have this idea of “I want the best” and “what is the best that I can get?”. I think even if we were to get the “best” that dating has to offer, we would still be able to find flaws, unwanted character traits, and other undesirable qualities. Then we might think to ourselves… “this isn’t the best..” I hope that we don’t cheat ourselves by looking at it this way. I think we should look at things a little differently…

To continue with my example before, the moment I stop thinking “what does my iPad have to offer me” and think of its good qualities and all the things I can accomplish with it, then I start to appreciate it more. Likewise in dating, if we stop thinking “what does this guy/girl have to offer me” and start thinking “what could we accomplish together?” we will have more satisfaction.

Please comment about what you think about this idea. Do you have any experiences that relate?

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