LIKE the prudent businessman/woman, the beginning of the year is always a good time to take stock. It is from this exercise that the businessman/woman makes certain management decisions.
A relationship would also benefit from a similar exercise. You therefore need to ask yourself the following questions regarding your relationship:
1. What are the 'goods' I have in stock?
2. Do I have these 'goods' in adequate quantities?
3. Am I satisfied with the returns I get on the 'goods' in stock?
4. Should I increase the quantities of the inventory?
5. Should I consider discontinuing those 'goods' and replacing them with others?
How you answer those questions will determine what strategic moves you need to make in the new year.
Stocktaking in a relationship may well be a necessary evil for some couples, especially if the relationship has been going for a long time. It may be that one or both individuals are unhappy with the current state of the relationship and need to decide if and how they should continue. Many relationships are just empty shells as the flames have long been extinguished and they exist only because of the children or the status.
If you don't have any of those extenuating circumstances that would detain you, then like the businessman/woman, you may need to make some critical management decisions at the end of the stocktaking exercise.
Usually when there is stocktaking the business place is closed temporarily so that a concentrated effort can be made to carry through the process. The same approach would be required for relationship stocktaking. One or both parties should agree to enter a period of timeout in order to carry out the audit in a focused way. It may mean little or no communication for a while. This is obviously more workable for those who do not live together.
In some instances one party might feel quite threatened of even frightened by the timeout move and may even seek to thwart the effort. It could well be that this individual is pre-empting the outcome of the stocktaking exercise as he/she could be the 'goods' that need to be discontinued and even replaced.
A stocktaking exercise may not necessarily show negative outcomes, it could well be that you are satisfied with the goods in stock and you may wish to increase the inventory. In this case one can expect that the relationship will grow from strength to strength as there are minor improvements/changes to be made.
Whatever the outcome of the relationship stocktaking exercise, assuming that the process was fair and honest; both parties should accept the results even though it may hurt one or both persons.
It is always better to take those tough management decisions today than to wait until the end of the year when the 'defective goods' in stock may cost you unnecessary time and effort.