'Being' vs 'doing' in relationships - how do we get the balance right?

We all know how it feels in the early days of a new relationship - everything's great, the excitement of getting to know each other. It comes naturally to enter into a 'being' state - where it just seems to work without entering into a conscious state of effortful 'doing'. The popular wisdom out there is that longer-term relationships require work - after the initial honeymoon period wears off, the work begins. We're now 'doing' relationship, rather than simply 'being' in relationship. Those of us who navigate this stage successfully roll up our sleeves, recognize that relationships require choice, conscious commitment, work and seeking out extra support if need be. We tend to congratulate ourselves - and justifiably so - when all the hard work pays off, and we experience the rewards in the quality of our connection. All well and good, but what about the part of us (both within ourselves as well as in relationship) that is a 'human being' rather than a 'human doing'?  Like figuring out our work/life balance, what is the healthy ratio between being (and by that perhaps I think of accepting, flowing with what is, allowing things to unfold... you may think of a number of other qualities that belong here) and doing (conscious effort to work on the quality of our interactions, choices to spend time together etc). Of course, relationships can flounder if we don't 'do' the work! But, in my opinion, if the balance tips too far toward the 'doing', we may lose the part that seems uncontrolled, emerging, unexpected - where my partner can still surprise, delight, challenge me in ever new ways, and retain the ability to be at least partly unknown and undiscovered.  Surely the essence of ''being in love' (as opposed to 'doing' or 'making' love!) resides in these moments! As always - your thoughts and responses are very welcome.

Till next post, Vivienne.

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