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The Beautiful Game


Fall is nigh which for the devoted means football season is upon us! There is nothing quite like the sound of a roaring crowd when the football has been kicked off to signal the start of American’s version of The Beautiful Game. We wait in anticipation as our favourite players line up and explode off the line as soon as the pigskin is snapped. With curious wonder we watch as plays unfold and then we scratch our head or cheer depending upon the outcome. This isn’t all too far from how our relationships work either. You’ve heard many couples talk about how they “let this one slide” when it comes to arguments because you have to “pick your battles.” Like football, relationships have a defense and an offense. Sometimes the offense will get something by the defense and sometimes the defense will stop the offense in its tracks. This is the same way arguments work in relationships when you “pick your battles.” I have three suggestions chock full of football metaphors to help your “team” score touchdowns every time!

1) Break down the play – What went wrong that lead to an argument? How did your significant other say that certain thing that made you want to go for the jugular? What was the tone, intensity, and volume of what was being said? Like football players, we have to be willing to break down the game tape and understand how the play collapsed and fell apart. Who missed their blocking assignment? Who got lazy with their tackling and let it slip away? These are the important questions you have to ask in the relationship to really determine your strengths and weaknesses. In other words, if you can identify where you went wrong with trying to convey your point and open up dialogue with strong communication and accountability for where you went wrong you are well on your way to the next suggestion.

2) Learn from the play – Understanding how the play went wrong helps to understand what needs to be corrected for next time in order to have flawless execution in your touchdown drive to ultimately end up with the big score. Knowing what your role is in the play helps you solidify the “footwork” you need to display in order to stay in front of whatever is coming your way and adjust accordingly. In other words, if you know raising your voice in the heat of a discussion brewing into an argument is going to affect your partner – lower your voice, remain calm, and remember you’re on the same team trying to accomplish the same objective. Now on to our last suggestion.

3) Call an audible – Sometimes the quarterback may see something in the defense that doesn’t look quite right and he needs to have his team on the same page enough to call a different play to exploit the defense. This is called an audible which is basically switching up the play and doing something different. This isn’t all that different in relationships. If you start to notice that things don’t look quite right don’t be afraid to call an audible and do something different to break the cycle of the same ole same ole. In other words, if you start to notice you and your partner escalating to the point of no return don’t hesitate to switch it up and tell them how much you cherish them and appreciate them and sing your frustrations to them. Trust me, no one can stay upset for very long when their partner is singing to them in the key of Bohemian Rhapsody.

If you commit yourselves to these three suggestions you’ll not only beat the opposing team into submission but you’ll also gain the victory of a highly satisfying relationship and that’s when you can really break out your dance moves for the most epic touchdown celebration ever or not because it’s your touchdown celebration and you do whatever you want!

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