I laugh out loud each time I hear a client complaining about their significant other’s interest in their home’s decor. It wasn’t long ago that I received the shock of a lifetime when my husband vetoed my preferred paint color. The nerve of that guy…
When we bought our 1st house I couldn’t wait to paint the walls and fill our new residence with all the ideas I had swirling around in my head. I totally expected to spend an afternoon rearranging the den and he never notice. I could even move his chair to the other side of the room and he wouldn’t care as long as it was still facing the television.
I was beyond frustrated and honestly frightened that I would never have my home decorated the way I wanted. How dreadful to think I would be subject to a football coach’s design aesthetic complete with framed jerseys and commemorative football helmets. I shudder at the thought.
However, after 7 years of marriage, I’ve grown accustom to my husband’s input–most recently with our bedroom makeover with Loom Decor. Together we’ve selected custom drapery and throw pillows using Loom’s genius interactive tool that allows you to virtually try before you buy.
So far he’s contributed some excellent ideas and it’s been fun working together on creating a relaxing retreat for the both of us.
So how did I brainwash my husband to like what I love? Just kidding…well, sorta. Here are a few words of advice:
1. ASK HIM WHAT HE WANTS
Instead of breaking out into a cold sweat when he didn’t capture my vision, I would pause and ask him what he wanted. I went beyond the conversation and pulled images from the web to communicate ideas to him. I also took into account his concern regarding function and married them with my concern for style.
2. GIVE HIM OPTIONS
Instead of cringing when he said he didn’t like the wall sconces I so badly wanted for the room, I gave him more options. When we still didn’t come to an agreement, I simply asked him to trust me. With all the other input he had in the space, he was more than willing to allow me to choose things I loved even if he didn’t! That’s what compromise is all about, right?
3. PICK AND CHOOSE YOUR BATTLES WISELY
Because getting along in any relationship always involves an element of compromise, learn how to give a little. Make a list of your priorities and a list of his priorities. You may be surprised to learn that they are not the same thing. Having a television in the room may be high on his list and not on your list at all. Instead of fighting about how a television drains intimacy from a relationship (or whatever your argument) choose an armoire or find a creative way to hide the tube when not in use. Get the idea?
In just two short weeks, I will show you how my advice produced a restful master bedroom retreat we both are crazy about. I do practice what I preach, you know.
Working with my spouse on this project has been a way to spend more time together and to create something, other than a baby [insert sarcasm], that represents us as a couple.
How have you mastered the art of compromise?