It’s a hard pill to swallow when you find out your one true love isn’t perfect. Truthfully, transitioning from the honeymoon period can be a total bitch but accepting it, and embracing it, is the only way a relationship will survive long term.
Say hello to the 80/20 rule and no, we’re not talking about diet.
The 80/20 rule is about thinking of your relationship in a particular way and managing expectations around it. It’s about realising you need to be in a relationship that most of the time is pretty damn great (80%) but 20% of the time, it may just feel good. You may occasionally be irritated, you may have the odd tiff but you can let this slide because, for the most part, your relationship is solid. It’s a balance, right?
We spoke to life-coach and celebrity relationship expert, Sloan Sheridan-Williams, who agreed this was a great approach to relationships. She said: “Anything that encourages balance in a relationship is always a positive step forward. The key to a healthy relationship is to raise your standards and lower your expectations. Lowering your expectations for 20% of the relationship which will create enough flexibility to allow a relationship to continue and grow”. She continued, “Variety is one of the Six Human Needs. By effectively not getting your own way 20% of the time you potentially open yourself up to new experiences and might perhaps find something new you love.”
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So, why 80/20 not 90/10, hey? Sloan says this creates too much pressure in a partnership. Explaining, she says: “These percentages are subjective and striving for 90% perfection still puts pressure on the relationship. 80/20 gives more room for manoeuvre when navigating a relationship’s course. The more effort and flexibility one puts into a relationship directly reflects how amazing it is. Pressure will deflate most relationships and this 80/20 rule is the perfect way to let go of pre-defined perceptions that can hinder two people happily moving forward.”
You know your own relationship better than anyone else, so therefore you’ll know if it does make you really, really happy 80% of the time. If it doesn’t, address it with your partner or maybe ask yourself, are you with the right person?