You’re Not The Only One

One of the hardest things in a relationship is to remember that you’re not the only one in it.

It seems like a simple concept, something that you and I should totally be aware of, because, hey, a relationship means that’s it ‘not just me’. There’s someone else in the room that is attached to you to your consciousness or state of being in some kind of definable or ambient way. A relationship means you are in relation with one another.

A relationship means you aren’t the only one.

But we do forget that we aren’t the only one. We do it a lot. We forget that we have a responsibility to prefer the other, our better, when we’re in union with our partners. We sometimes get so caught up in monitoring ourselves and weighing our own thoughts, ideas, and feelings that we can forget to allow them to be present in our most intricate and minute actions.

Oftentimes, we forget our partners, not just in our romantic partnerships, but often when we think about our world-at-large, when we think about the community. In fact, let’s talk about the phrase, “the community”. It has been spat out among the masses from our civic leaders, our politicians, our faith leaders, our educators, and so on for so long in our national culture that it’s largely become a benign expression to represent people who are connected by some sort of common people, place, or thing. In many respects, it’s largely become an abstract euphemism to describe people who might be the center of urban planning projects. It’s become a political phrase, a cliche.

And we need to dignify it.

The Community that we so often reference is actually the epitome of a relationship. It spiritually is Webster’s definition of relationship on a macro-level; and when folks refer to The Community, there can often be a disconnect. A lot of times, even if we don’t hear the disconnect in lifeless descriptions of these random, characterless people that we reference in our pontifications and declarations to one another, we feel the disconnect in our hearts. And we have the nerve to wonder why the various Communities that we all have spoken of, with their vague and numerous problems and inconveniences, don’t ever seem to find the solutions that we figure are so simple or beget the answers we feel are so clear. It’s because we have forgotten about those same random, characterless people in our hearts and only really focused on ourselves.

Here’s what I’m getting at — if we seek to help solve the problems that are affecting our collective ability to commune with each other and come together to solve problems that affect our world as a whole, including our own geographical pockets of the globe, we must remember that we aren’t the only ones in the relationship, we aren’t apart from The Community — we are a part of The Community. We and The Community are one and the same. We’re just we.

You cannot fix within what you do not acknowledge is present. All a community is, is a band of people who are in relation with humanity or some product of it. And when we address The Community, be it large or small, we must address ourselves in the dictation — not as we might do thoughtlessly and with laissez-faire, but with mindful intention. We must decrease and allow our neighbors the space to increase. Again, we are not apart in a community.  In a healthy community, we are together and in congress, giving one another the floor to think, feel, and act with respect for our wellness as a whole, both literally in flesh and in spirit.

Just as you might show respect for your spouse and you think of them, mindfully and intentionally, as you act upon the plans that you have in your heart and mind, so it goes that we should do the same for the Communities in which we belong.

Because, after all, that’s what you would do in your relationship…right?


by Sandy Dover for Think Tank, Inc. — to learn more about Think Tank, please visit

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