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We Should All Keep Score
By John Barrows | November 30, 2016

Unpopular Opinion: We Should All Keep Score in Relationships

A while ago, someone was explaining to me how their friend was always evaluating and keeping score in their relationship and how much it bothered them. I understood her annoyance without thinking much of it, but I was recently exposed to a situation that made me think differently. Whether we do it consciously or subconsciously, we all keep score in our relationships. Being conscious and open about it can be a positive thing.

When Equality is Off Things Go Downhill

We all search for some type of equality in our relationships and when that equality is off, bad things happen. In a marriage or partnership, if one person feels like they’re doing all the work (taking care of the kids, earning all the money, etc.) it inevitably ends up with an argument. In a friendship, if one friend is always the one reaching out to get together or stay connected, eventually they stop and the friendship dies. In business, if a sales rep feels like they’re doing everything for the client and not getting anything in return it tends to get combative. If a client feels like they’re getting taken advantage of or ignored the renewal will never happen.

Get Ahead of the Problem

In many of these scenarios a subconscious line was crossed where one side felt things were uneven and then reacted. If we were more conscious about maintaining equality in relationships, we may be able to preemptively address an issue before it goes too far and save ourselves time and aggravation. It’s easier to openly apply this in business than personal relationships but the idea of a balanced scorecard is worth exploring.

Think about what you’re giving away and what you’re getting in return and see if keeping score helps you get ahead of things.

Make it happen!

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