Giving More Power to Power Couples
You see them in social media and watch them on TV – they’re the Hollywood power couples. They are – as the Urban Dictionary defines them – couples composed of two equally successful people. Think Jay-Z and Beyonce. However, the true definition of a power couple does not necessarily require celebrity, it is more about two successful equals in a relationship. But, there are challenges for power couples to stay together. Dr. Michael McNulty, a master trainer from The Gottman Institute and founder of the Chicago Relationship Center, explains why it is so hard for power couples to co-exist. Let’s not forget Brad Pitt and Angela Jolie, aka “Brangelina.”
“Maintaining a marital friendship, romance, and intimacy, managing ongoing conflict that is inevitable in marriage, and creating and maintaining a meaningful relationship is more challenging for partners with successful careers because they have less time to do so,” McNulty acknowledged, “And these couples are at more risk when the connection to their career becomes more primary, and the commitment to and trust in the relationship becomes questionable.”
Luckily, there is hope though for the power couples out there. According to Research Psychologist and Couples Counselor, John Gottman in his book What Makes Love Last, "Forty years of research shows that trust and commitment are crucial to holding relationships together. When both partners have a strong commitment to a relationship, this leads to a strong sense of trust, which makes love last."
Successful power couples that have stayed together have identified the following seven keys to maintaining their relationships:
- Put the couple before the power: Prioritize spending time together whether that is committing to a date night or scheduling walks or exercise time together
- Don’t sweat the small stuff: That’s true whether you’re looking to avoid conflict over minor bumps in the road or hiring help to avoid annoying little tasks that neither of you enjoy, such as cleaning the house or cutting the lawn.
- Take the “EGO” out of negotiation: Compromise is key in a good relationship but is impossible when one power person puts his or her ego ahead of what’s best for the couple.
- Listen honestly: Successful people are generally great at speaking their minds but successful couples are equally as great at listening to their partner speak his or her mind
- Grudges become gorges: When conflict inevitably arises, it is critical in a successful relationship to be honest, get it out in the open and don’t waste time, energy and emotion on holding secret and/or long-lasting grudges
- Please, thank you and sorry: Successful power couples appreciate their partners, don’t take them for granted and are quick to acknowledge when they’re wrong and apologize.
- Commit to commit: For a relationship to remain successful when both partners are highly driven and busy, McNulty says couples must remain committed to one another before anything or anyone else.
Hand & Stone is celebrating those power couples who have successfully navigated the relationship minefield. We are celebrating those couples who enjoy time together in our couple’s retreat. We are celebrating couples who care to give each other the gift of relaxation. And we are celebrating by introducing our own Power Couples – powerful facial products and services that are great in their own right but are even more powerful as a couple. Read more about our Power Couples later in this newsletter and be sure to visit one of our over 400 Hand & Stone spas to share the gift of relaxation with your significant (and successful) other.