Gotta be honest, I dislike team-building exercises. I don’t want to learn to trust Jim in accounting. It seems manufactured. I don’t want to fall back off of a picnic table and depend on Helen, Steve, Carol, and Jim in Accounting to catch me. Sorry. It’s not going to happen. I don’t trust them. However if Mrs Planner were behind me, she would catch me. I trust her 100%. Other than getting ready for date night in a timely manner, she is the most dependable person I know. I don’t know if she sets out to be dependable, but she is. And she makes me want to be dependable.
I think dependable is a pretty damn good quality. Striving to be dependable is an admirable aim. If you’ve ever found yourself on the other side of an undependable person, then you know the frustration that can commence. Have you ever been in a rowboat with someone who isn’t even trying to do their share of rowing? It sucks. No matter how hard you row, their crappy-drag-you-down effort will keep turning your boat in a direction you don’t want to go. It’s incredibly frustrating, especially when you know that your partner can do better. The last thing you really want in a partner is potential.
While you can’t always (rarely/never) provide endless income to your significant other, you can provide endless effort. What exactly does that look like? Or better yet, what doesn’t it look like?
Love expressed via effort
- Taking your lunch to work when you are focusing on accomplishing a financial goal
- Allowing your significant other to hold you accountable to your financial goals
- Woking overtime even when you don’t want to, in order to accomplish a financial goal
Something else expressed via a lack of effort
- Dining out for lunch often despite the fact that you know you shouldn’t
- Coasting after a huge commission month
- Paying bills…late
Money is often the root of marital discord. However I’ve found that effort curbs many arguments before they even start. Effort builds trust. Effort is the ultimate team-building exercise.
Peter Dunn a.k.a. Pete the Planner® is an award-winning financial mind and a former comedian. He’s a USA TODAY columnist, author of ten books, and is the host of the popular radio show and podcast, The Pete the Planner Show. Pete is considered one of the foremost experts on financial wellness in the world, but he’s just as likely to talk your ear off about bass fishing.