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The U.S. government shut down is a perfect example of the self centered focus of our society and culture.

300px-BurningofWashington1814It’s a “me first” perspective that permeates organizations and personal relationships that ultimately has a very negative impact on society as a whole.   It’s the opposite of love and cooperation, “win-win.”  It’s a “win-lose” scenario that eventually leads to everyone losing.  Like many people I was struck by the fact that although the government was shut down and employees were laid off, the politicians continued to be paid.  The very people responsible for the mess in first continue to be paid while most everyone is laid off!

I always say that in a good relationship, if one person loses, the relationship loses.

It’s this self focus that underlies most relationship problems.

Couples start out in love, that is, they are focused on making their partner happy but after the initial romance fades,  the love also begins to fade and things tend to devolve into a “scorecard” way of relating.  Each partner tries to get their own needs met, often at the expense of the other.  They begin to say to themselves, “what’s in it for me?” Once this begins to happen, resentment and conflict escalates and couples begin to think about separation.

Is it any wonder that we have a 50% divorce rate? The U.S. government is like a very unhappy marriage – lack of trust, blame, accusations, anger, contempt.

Love is really about the other versus what’ in it for me.

I believe that we are here to evolve our consciousness, that is, become more loving.  Not because of “what’s in it for me” but because that’s our true nature – to love and care about the other.  I love the philosophy of  Aikido, the Japanese non – violent martial art, in which your opponent’s aggression is re-directed non-violently such that no one gets hurt, including the aggressor. I’ll be talking about this more in future posts.

Let me ask you….who are you focused on?  Yourself or your partner?