Decisiveness, consistency and strength are three terms that has been an ongoing topic of discussion during Sunday sermons. On May 18, Pastor A.R. Bernard honed in on those three words by saying, “There are three things God want from a man, there are three things women want in a man and there are three things men struggle with: decisiveness, consistency and strength.” Though churchgoers erupted in laughter it was very true. Women want a man that can make decisions with certainty (decisiveness), who is reliable (consistent) and strong. However, these are the same characteristics men struggle with.
Pastor Bernard discussed the basic values and principles that guide the decision-making process. More importantly, he suggested asking yourself basic questions that can determine whether or not you and your significant other are equally yoked. Many believe opposites attract, which at times they do, but there are basic fundamental values and principles that must be parallel for the relationship to flourish.
While I sat in church and mused on the three terms and what guides individuals in the decision-making process, I recalled a paper I composed my sophomore year of college, “Do Opposites Attract?”
During my research I found we strive to have motivations, attitudes and behaviors that do not contradict one another. Though during the mating game we, at times, find ourselves in uncomfortable situations, we ultimately will have a hard time committing if the individual’s beliefs are not consistent with ours. The reason for the uncomfortable feeling is due to the belief in the Cognitive Dissonance Theory. According to the Cognitive Dissonance Theory, inconsistency between attitudes, beliefs and/or behavior causes an unpleasant physical state called dissonance (Pastorino, E., & Doyle-Portillo, S What is Psychology?). Dissonance is defined as a state of unease.
What exactly did I just say you’re wondering? In laymen’s terms if you are a female who was raised in the church and it’s important your future husband share similar beliefs about religion, spirituality and church, then you will not marry someone who beliefs contradict yours. Though you can be physically attracted to an individual, for the attraction to continue to grow both parties must maintain a state of consonance. Both partners must be able to relate to one another producing positive experiences (rewards).
So how do we avoid dissonance? By asking yourself basic questions:
Are the flaws the individual exhibit something you can live with? Prior to hearing my pastor state this I would always say, “We all F-up are these F-ups you can deal with? If so give the relationship a chance, if not don’t waste your time.
Do you know who the individual is? Is he/she an extrovert or an introvert? Do you guys share interests?
Ladies, is he decisive, consistent and strong? Is he at least attempting to be decisive, consistent and strong?
What are the person’s basic values and principles? Is it parallel to yours?
Let’s face it my fellow millennials, we are no longer at the age we can date to just date. Unless you are aware you are not ready to commit, once you hit your mid-twenties you should not be dating anyone you don’t see a future with. If you’re still figuring out your basic values and principles that is fine, date on and enjoy! However, once you figure that out stop wasting your and the individual’s time.