Do you know your relationship values? Are they the same as your partner's relationship values? This is the fourth episode of a series on Getting Ready for Marriage. In this podcast episode, Elizabeth Polinsky discusses the importance of knowing your personal values, your relationship values, and how to determine your relationship values together with your partner.
IN THIS PODCAST
1. Why I am doing this series on Getting Ready for Marriage:
It’s wedding season now and I had a wedding photographer reach out to me asking me to provide some tips for couples getting married. I created an entire checklist for her with the things I think are foundational for getting ready for marriage and starting off your marriage on the right foot. If you want the checklist, you can download it here!
2. My Relationship Fail Moment:
Last thanksgiving, my husband and I were on a walk and came across an unmanned hot chocolate stand. My husband joked about stealing a marshmallow from the hot chocolate stand, and later that night I yelled at him and tell him how he wasn't a good man because he would consider stealing a marshmallow. This was a relationship fail on my part because I had let my anger build up instead of talking about the issue when it was happening. Looking back now, we see it as a funny story. But at the time, I was anger that he would even THINK about the possibility of stealing a marshmallow. My level of anger was related to my personal values, and thinking that my husband and I did not share the same values. More on this in a little bit...
Values are about what you want to stand for in life" -- Elizabeth Polinsky
3. What are Personal Values:
Values are qualities of being that are important for who you are and what you want to stand for in life. For example, you could value curiosity, adventure, honesty, service, community, etc. For me, with the marshmallows, my personal values of honesty and respect were at play. Being respectful of other's property is important to me even if it is a marshmallow! So when my husband had the joke about stealing the marshmallow, it signaled to me that he didn't value respect the same way I did--and that was very frustrating.
In relationships it is helpful to know your personal values as well as your partner's personal values because differences in values can be a source of conflict in relationships. If you can both identify your personal values and discuss them together, then maybe you can avoid marshmallow incident like what we had!
It's important to know that your core values typically don't change over you life, although the priority might change over your life. For example, a value of service may always be important, but if you have young children then caring for them may be a higher priority than service while they are very young. It doesn't mean that the value of service isn't still a core value though.
If you aren't sure what your personal values are, you can check out this list of personal values from Dr. Russ Harris as well as the youtube video below to help you figure out your personal life values.
4. Figuring out your relationship values.
In relationships it is important to be a team. It is important to decide together as a team what you want your family to stand for, what your your collective family core values will be. This may be different or similar to your personal core values. Examples of family values could be loyalty, financial stability, etc.
There is something called an ACT Matrix that comes from Acceptance and Commitment Therapy to help you determine your values. I go over how to use the ACT Matrix for your relationship in the YouTube Video below:
You can Download the worksheet here!! This worksheet has the example worksheet I did in the youtube video, as well as a blank worksheet for you and your partner to fill out together!
In the worksheet, you and your partner together ask yourselves these 5 questions:
Download the worksheet for determining your relationship values here!
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Thanks for Listening!
Elizabeth Polinsky is a marriage and couple therapist specializing in working with military members, veterans, and their families. Liz is located in Norfolk, Virginia, and provides online counseling services throughout Virginia, South Carolina, and Arkansas.
My podcast, blogs, videos, newsletters, and products are general information for educational purposes only; they are not psychotherapy and not a replacement for therapy. The information provided does not constitute the formation of a therapist-patient relationship. You should consult your doctor or mental health provider regarding advice and support for your health and well being. I cannot answer questions regarding your specific situation. If you are experiencing a medical or mental health emergency, you should call 911, report to your local ER, or call the National Crisis Hotline at 1-800-273-8255. Nothing I post should be considered professional advice. The information in my podcast, blogs, videos, newsletters, and products are not intended to be therapy or psychological advice. The podcast, blogs, videos, newsletters, and products are not a request for a testimonial, rating, or endorsement from clients regarding counseling. If you are a current or former client/ patient, please remember that your comments may jeopardize your confidentiality. I will not “friend” or “follow” current or past clients to honor ethical boundaries and privacy; nor will I respond to comments or messages through social media or other platforms from current or past clients. Current and past client’s should only contact me through the professional contact information provided on the website. Lastly, accounts may be managed by multiple people. Therefore, comments and messages are monitored by staff and are not confidential.
The Communicate & Connect Podcast
In Communicate & Connect For Military Relationships, I provide educational tips for relationships, communication, and navigating military family life.
Hey, I'm Dr. Elizabeth "Liz" Polinsky and I am a marriage counselor in Virginia Beach. I provide online counseling across the states of VA, MD, NC, SC, AR, and NV.