I went to dinner last night to celebrate a friend’s birthday. There were 11 of us.
We bought plates for the middle of the table and shared whatever came out. The food was delicious. The conversation lively. The evening was enjoyed by all.
When it came time to pay for the meal, our birthday host let us know that the Czech way of handling it would be the birthday boy would take care of the bill. Apparently other cultures had the same tradition.
We debated what to do, and chose to handle it the American way. The friends of the birthday person split the check.
Analogy for life.
As I reflected on the evening, I had the thought, “This is an analogy for our relational lives!” It was quite easy for each of us to handle our portion of the bill. We shared responsibility for the cost of the meal. However, if the check was given to the Czech, it would have been a big burden for him.
If each of us, sitting at the table of our relationships, takes responsibility for our emotions and our experiences, then it is easy. Once I hand responsibility over to someone else, it becomes more of a burden for the other person.
Split the emotional check of your relationships.