What is more important to you, being right or being happy? Some of us “competitive types” value winning over connection. We forget that in marriage we are supposed to be on the same team and working together so that we can both succeed. So how do we stop keeping score? Being aware of our tendency to keep score and openly acknowledging the negative aspects of this trait is a good starting point. We as a society tend to focus on the negative aspects of ourselves and others. How about writing down the positive traits, behaviors, and characteristics of your partner and regularly sharing them with each other. Show love, support, and caring for one another because it makes you feel better rather than because you expect the same in return. Be able to forgive, release, and let go of negative emotion and disappointment when your partner doesn’t meet an expectation or need. It’s okay to communicate when you are hurt, but keeping a running tally of all you’ve done for your spouse and emphasizing what they haven’t done doesn’t motivate him/her to change. We are all human and make mistakes. A successful marriage focuses on each teammate’s strengths and works at building each other up. Scorekeeping prevents us from looking at our own issues and keeps our focus on our partner. Remember from previous blogs, we can only change ourselves. Winning comes from cooperation, compromise, and compassion which leads to connection. Marriage is a team sport.