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"Don't give 100% of yourself to someone who is only giving you 50%. Before you know it, you'll be empty and they'll have enough of themselves to pass around." ~ Tony A. Gaskins Jr.

I recently saw a post on one of the FB pages I follow where someone posed a very interesting question which goes hand in hand with what I felt inspired to talk about today. The question posed was “Does it take 50/50 or 100 percent from each party to make a relationship work?” I enjoyed reading all the different perspectives people had to share on the matter in the comments and I thought why not share my thoughts on this today.

I think for the longest time I was one of those people who believed that for a relationship to work, both parties must assume 50/50 responsibility. But this idea was quickly changed a few years ago when I read about the 100/0 principle of creating successful relationships in Darren Hardy’s book the compound Effect (which I highly recommend). The 100/0 principle states that, "You have to be willing to give 100 percent with zero expectation of receiving anything in return. Only when you are willing to take 100 percent responsibility for making the relationship work will it work. Otherwise, the relationship left to chance will always be vulnerable to disaster.”

From reading the comments of on the post, it was safe to say that many felt that relationships should be 50/50. But the problem with the 50/50 mentality is that one, it requires someone other than you to make the relationship work and two, when we give, we always expect something in return. And when nothing is given back, we tend to react negatively, creating a hostile environment in the relationship. The hostility then leads to resentment and slowly by slowly, the relationship starts to fall apart.

And so, I believe that to build lasting and successful relationships each party must give 100 percent with zero expectation, because only then will each party realize that the success of the relationship is dependent on their individual effort; and what this does is that it makes everyone accountable for developing a lasting and positive relationship.

Now, the 100/0 principle does not mean that you should let anyone take advantage of you, or you should settle for less. If you find yourself in a relationship where you are constantly giving 100% with zero expectation and you feel like the other party is giving less maybe it is time to reevaluate that relationship and figure out if it is worth saving or if it is time to let go.

And here is where I would like to shift gears to address my fellow women because I feel like we women tend to allow ourselves to stay in unhealthy relationships when we know very well that these relationships are not good for us. We try so hard to make a relationship work even though deep down inside we know it is not working. We never heed the signs of unhealthy relationships, and we always try to find ways to stay in the relationship. So much that we are willing to let our guard down and compromise our standards so that a relationship can work. But in never does. In the long run all we end up doing is creating more hurt because we end up investing so much feeling and emotion in something that is bound to fail. Amid all that emotional chaos, we end up losing ourselves.

I am speaking from experience here. I was in a relationship and very early on into it, I knew that it was not going to work. But because I was craving companionship, I figured that I could influence him to become the man I want him to be. But here is the problem with that and this saying sums it all up, "You can lead a horse to the water, but you can't make it drink." In short, you can never force someone to change if they do not want to change or if they do not see the need to change.

One thing I have learnt is that, if a man loves you, he will treat you right. You will not have to direct him on how to love you because he already values you and knows your worth. And just like his prized possession, he will treat you right.

It is time we know our worth. Love is not something to be justified, rather it ought to happen naturally. It is not in our place to teach a man how to love us, because a man who truly loves you and knows your worth will always treat you like you deserve.

So, if you are in a relationship where both of you are not giving 100 percent with zero expectation, then maybe it is time to re-evaluate and make the necessary changes. And if you figure out it is not working out, then make the conscious decision to let go and move on.


Reading Recommendation:


I consider this book a woman's bible. Every woman (single, married, or divorced) needs to read this book. It will help you discover:

  • The importance of realizing your true value.

  • What real love looks like and how to attract it.

  • Ways to establish and keep personal boundaries.

  • Why differences between men and women are important.

  • How to be "heart smart" and victorious in love matters.

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