Relationship advice: the dangers of success
Climbing the career ladder takes time, determination and often pure grit. But once you get there the rewards are huge – a handsome salary, lovely perks, and a sense of power. On the other hand, while your career is on the up your relationship may be on the rocks – but why? Here are 5 real dangers success poses to your relationship:
1. You’re not on an equal footing
Relationships work best when the couple are equals. This doesn’t mean they have to have the same job, or like the same things, but each partner should have equal say and input into the relationship. If one partner is much more successful than the other then there is an imbalance of power. The other partner may feel at a loss because they aren’t contributing as much financially, or they may simply feel inadequate as their other half‘s success eclipses their own.
In cases like this, it’s important for both partners to feel as if they make an equal contribution. For example, her job as a CEO working longer hours and bringing home a bigger pay-packet, is only possible because he supports her both emotionally and in lots of other ways.
2. Ego becomes a third person in the relationship
When one person spends all day knowing they’re responsible for a big team, big budget or big projects, they can start to think they are the big ‘I Am’.When they then come home and expect the same deference and respect, problems arise. If a problem arises in the relationship and the successful partner is used to getting their own way in the office, they may well expect the same result at home – leading to arguments, or the other person just feeling downtrodden.
3. Work takes precedence
A successful career isn’t without it’s sacrifices – long hours, weekends in the office and constant connectivity by phone, Blackberry and laptop. In a pressured job you can lose perspective, and replying to emails (that could easily wait until Monday) at dinner becomes the norm. If this sounds like you, we understand that a lot of people at work rely on you, but so does your partner. Are you sure they’re really ok with being cancelled on again?
4. Priorities change
Before you got the big promotion relaxing weekends pottering around the house, the weekly pub quiz night with friends and even the odd spontaneous trip away were the norm. But now, wining and dining clients comes before the weekly pub quiz night, and trips to conferences mean the end to relaxing weekends doing DIY. While your aim is to cement and continue your success then these are the things you feel the need to do. But, all the while your partner is wondering when you’ll next put a quiet evening in with them ahead of client drinks and spreadsheets.
5. You change
Imagine you met your partner when you were just starting out on your career path. You had similar views on life and you seemed well suited. Then you become successful and suddenly people who wouldn’t have given you a second look before start to pay attention to you – some of whom are of the opposite sex. After all, power is an aphrodisiac. You and your partner drift apart, as you see your options open up in your career and romantic life. This is the time to either refocus on your relationship or cut all ties, before someone gets hurt.
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