No one likes to feel like they’re second best, especially when they’re in a committed relationship with someone they expected would always be there for them.
When you come second to your partner’s hobbies, you may start to feel a little neglected or that they don’t make enough time for you.
Eventually, this can lead to a seriously disruptive situation that may have you considering leaving them, especially if they can’t get their act together.
But how do we work with our partners rather than against them? After all, a diplomatic solution is often the best one.
It’s a great question and it’s something we’re going to expand upon below in six concise points to help get you back on track and working as a team again.
War Is a Failure of Diplomacy: 6 Things You Should Consider When Hobbies Interfere With Your Relationship
1. Find out why they love their hobby so much
The key to good diplomacy is understanding what you’re dealing with and in this case, who you’re dealing with.
If you’re constantly butting heads with your partner about their activities then it would be a prudent course of action to investigate what makes them tick and why they get so excited about their hobbies.
In sales, they say the best types of questions are the ones that are open-ended, mainly because they feel less like an interrogation and more like a way for the person to feel like they’re volunteering information rather than being forced to reveal it.
Realistically, it’s worth approaching your partner about their hobbies and asking them a few questions to help get a lay of the land — even if you don’t find anything super helpful, it can still allow you to establish a foundation to approach the issue from.
2. Try to engage them through their hobby
Questions are a good starting point to help you understand someone’s love for their hobbies, however, nothing is as intimate or as revealing as trying them for yourself, preferably together with your partner.
Basically, if communication has been lost then sometimes the only way to re-establish it is to engage them on the same playing field — their excitement becomes your excitement and hopefully, this should help them to open up with you.
Negotiating from the favored ground will always be more successful than trying to negotiate from a point of communication breakdown.
Plus, you might even find something you like within the activity which can help to completely dissolve the whole situation, especially if you start doing more things together.
3. Hash out a midground
Only a completely self-absorbed nitwit would be completely against the idea of trying to find an amicable solution with their partner when they’re not happy about something, and if that were the case, you’d be better off without them.
However, part of getting together with someone is usually based on the understanding that you’ll do most things fifty-fifty together or will at least try to hash out a midground so to speak.
The reason for doing this is clear; it means no one feels like they aren’t having their say or getting to have some input about certain situations, but it also means that each day has some direction for both parties.
A midground might not be the perfect solution from your point of view, but it can certainly make things a whole lot better, and in most cases, it’s far easier to digest for both parties that they were met halfway rather than not at all.
4. Consider using your sudden abundance of time productively as well
If you’re constantly complaining about your partner’s activities then it might just be the case that you don’t have enough things to do yourself.
In fact, it’s quite common for people to have very few hobbies these days which in turn, means their partner becomes the sole focus of their attention and energy.
This may seem really wholesome to you but it can actually be really unfair and unrealistic on the other person to expect them to completely drop their passions.
In this case, we recommend trying to find something to keep you busy as well so you don’t feel like you’re left twiddling your thumbs with nothing to do — this can also help you establish a better understanding of what it means to be passionate about something enough to become completely engrossed in it sometimes.
5. Agree on a schedule
Another great way to establish a diplomatic solution for certain needs and wants is to create a schedule whereby you and your partner can allocate specific time slots for each other and the family.
The reason for doing this is that it becomes hard to renege on something that has been agreed from a fair discussion where both parties had come to an accord.
It also means that you have a clearer picture of when to expect attention from your partner and makes it less likely that they’ll overindulge or become completely engrossed in what they’re doing i.e. you end up getting more time with them.
This is one of the fairest ways of establishing a better deal for yourself, mainly because it feels like both parties got to have some input about the whole situation rather than feeling like they were dictated to.
Lastly, and perhaps the hardest of all, giving complete acceptance to the situation of your partner and their passions, mainly because you know it truly defines who they are as a person, and is probably the reason why you were so interested in them in the first place.
This is a truly altruistic approach and is a moral highroad of sorts — one that can leave you feeling strangely proud of yourself.
Sometimes the battle isn’t worth the war; having the foresight to see that and to overcome a bad situation before it happens is a truly powerful trait to embody.
In fact, we’d probably all get along far better if we were able to accept each other for who we are.
We only live once, and robbing someone of the opportunity to really live their life on their terms can be something that is hard to live with.
There are many ways to skin a cat, though, in most cases, the diplomatic road is usually the best road to go down to solve a problem with your partner.
Ultimately, it comes down to good communication and being able to explore a solution on their turf just as much as your own.
Learning why someone does something rather than immediately going for the throat will always lead to a healthier outcome, however, if you’re still struggling then it can sometimes be worth accepting a situation and moving on.
- 6 Reasons Why Your Wife Hates Your Hobbies and What You Can Do About It
- 5 Ways to Ask Someone About Their Hobbies (a How-to Guide)
- Can You Date Someone With No Common Interests? 5 Reasons Why It Can Make Sense
- Can a Hobby Become an Addiction? 5 Signs You’re on the Right Track With Your Passions
- 11 Reasons Why Hobbies Are Important (and Why You Might Be Missing Out Otherwise)
- 6 Top Tips on How to Prioritize Hobbies For Maximum Efficiency
- How Do You Manage Work and Hobbies? 5 Tips to Own Your Time
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