What Kind of Team Player Are You?

Are you and your partner on the same team? Do you feel like you are working toward the same goal? Let’s talk about how a couple can resolve conflict as a team.

Team work; In a healthy relationship the two people are working together to find a solution. They share their ideas, they make suggestions, they explain their perspective and share their desires. Each of them listens to the others perspective and considers it. Then together they bat around ideas as to how to solve this conflict. They say things like; “how would you feel if we…” or “What do you think about this”. In asking these questions it shows a desire to consider the other persons opinion and work together to find a solution. This couple is on the same team. If we think of this as a sport then they are a soccer team kicking the ball down the field in order to make a goal.

The passer; Sometimes the two players continually pass off the ball instead of taking it to the goal. It’s as if they are tying to solve a conflict but play on opposite teams. The first person criticizes and blames the other person, this is like continually passing the ball. This is not helpful because then the receiver of the criticism, instead of working towards a solution, finds that they are busy defending themselves. It would have been more healthy for the first person to talk about their own feelings instead of pointing the finger and blaming. The two people criticize and defend but don’t work towards the goal or a solution.

Show off; This is when the person takes a superior attitude and shows disrespect towards their partner. In keeping with our sports analogy, this would be the ball hog or show off. Without respect in the relationship we loose the desire or ability to work as a team.

Quitter; This is when the player walks off the field. In a relationship it shows itself when someone gives you the silent treatment and will no longer talk. Or they walk out of the room and disappear for a period of time. Not in order to cool off but in order to avoid the conflict or punish the person with the problem. This is not productive in trying to resolve a conflict or solve a problem.

A coach of a team often starts with team building. This applies to relationships too, in order to work together as a team there has to be a foundation of friendship, appreciation, respect and consideration. Building these qualities in a relationship takes effort but allows for a partnership that is resilient and positive rather that gridlocked and negative. It is worth the effort.

If you need help establishing the foundation of teamwork and friendship than give me a call, I can help you.

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