Relationship Taxes and Credits

Have you ever listened to Dave Ramsey, the well-known financial advisor? When responding to a caller who has gotten himself caught in a wringer, he often uses a phrase like, “Well, you’re now paying your “stupid tax” as a result of making that dumb financial decision.” Basically he is pointing out that our financial choices will always bring results. When we make a dumb or uninformed decision, the pain we feel and the loss we suffer is called the stupid tax.

I personally don’t often use the word stupid to describe people or choices, but since all taxes are painful to one extent or another perhaps I can say that when we make a relationship choice that runs contrary to true relationship principles, we can always expect to pay a painful tax as a result. The good news is that every appropriate choice will bring its own “smart tax credit” in the form of greater light and peace.

All choices we make in our relationships bring results, good or bad, painful or happy.

The key is to focus on your own choices, not those of your partner, and to honestly evaluate your results. Certainly your spouse is imperfect, but doing something about your own imperfections will move you infinitely closer to the relationship of your dreams than worrying about theirs.

Be honest now: In your experience has anger and blame resulted in a painful relationship tax or an enriching credit? Has dishonesty placed you on the plus or minus side of the ledger? Has patience and charity resulted in relationship healing or further wounds? Be aware of and accountable for your choices and look honestly at their results. By doing so you will learn from your experiences and grow in relationship wisdom, one of the greatest gifts of all.

So stop paying the painful tax in your relationship and instead start collecting the sweet credits and refunds that are available to us all. Take accountability for your results.