Hollywood romcoms portray the impossibility of perfect relationships.
And our exposure to these movies actually affects how we view romance and behavior in our own relationships.
There’s a fascinating study in a media culture journal that found that frequent exposure to romance and courtship in this idealized form could lead viewers to adopt equally idealized notions about relationships in the real world. This false expectation can create a gap in overall relationship satisfaction.
But the truth behind the scenes is, all of those less sexy behaviors like compromise and sacrifice and deferment are what lay beneath the surface to keep our relationships alive.
That’s what nobody tells us when we fall in love. That each of us is going to have to discover what degree of compromise we’re willing to live with. What degree of adjustment to the other person and to the world we’re willing to make that allows us to live with ourselves.
Glass, the legendary composer of minimalist music, is known for his prolific and unusual collaborations with other artists. And he once made the following comment in a newspaper interview that parallels this idea of constructive compromise.
Lots of people talk about how important it is for artists to find their voice, he says, but what you really want to do is lose your voice. That’s how you evolve and grow as an artist. Only when I encounter the unknown can I change my own language.
That’s what we do for each other. We merge our voices. We create our own lexicon of living. One team, one dream.
Seinfeld was right when he said:
Our blessing in life is when we find the torture we’re comfortable with.
Perhaps we should stop watching movies and start asking ourselves if we’re ready to endure the sacrifice that commitment entails.
LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Have you worked out your own brand of compromise?
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That Guy with the Nametag
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