Thursday, May 10, 2012

Don't Let Your Relationship DVR Become Full

I like a show on Showtime called Californication.  I like it so much that every Sunday night at 9:30PM I was tied to my television to watch the adventures of Hank Moody, the slightly myopic and oversexed alcoholic writer. During the past few seasons I couldn't get enough of it.

Then my Sunday nights started getting busy.  I had BLOGS to write, speeches to prepare for and a startup to help birth. When I realized I might be in danger of missing the season premier back in January I quickly remedied that by setting my DVR to record the show so I didn't have to stop what I was doing at 9:30PM to go upstairs to watch.  I could continue to work and just watch it later that evening or the next day.  Problem solved!

For those first few weeks I couldn't wait to get upstairs to watch the latest episode.  But something was happening. Sunday's at 9:30 were suddenly no longer a hard stop to quit working because I knew the show was being recorded and I could watch it anytime.  Often on Sunday night I wouldn't give 9:30PM a second thought and then something else interesting started to happen.  Rather than be excited to watch the latest episode as soon as an opening in my schedule appeared, I wouldn't even think about the show. I started watching the latest episode later and later in the week with no sense of urgency. Until magically I wasn't watching at all.

The show was automatically being recorded and I got lazy.  One saved episode quickly turned into two which turned into five.  You get the point.  Bottom line it took me forever to get back to watching all those episodes because the drive and motivation simply wasn't there.  I would think to myself they would be on my DVR, waiting.  What's the urgency?

Then something funny happened.  My DVR got full.  I was recording so many other programs that in order to make room, my DVR started deleting the oldest recordings.  Suddenly Californication wasn't waiting for me to watch it when I got around to it.  It was gone.  I can assure you Hank Moody would have gone off on some unique Shakespearean rant when razing me about the irony.

That's when it struck me, relationships are sort of like that.  We invest the time to build them, we get all pumped and excited by them and then we put them on autopilot. Just like our magically little recorded shows we expect them to be there waiting for us when "we're ready" for them.  And like I found with Californication, sometimes when we find the time to put our time and attention back towards getting engaged with the important relationships in our personal and professional lives, we suddenly find them gone.

Think about it.

Better yet, don't let it happen to you.

You can always order the past season of your favorite show from Netflix and get a do over but when it comes to relationships, there are no do overs.  Just relationships that get deleted and are gone forever.

Ripple On!!!

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