Throughout our lives, many of us have close relationships with rational people.
(I deliberately use gender-neutral words here, because it's by no means so that all rational people are male, or that all men are rational.)
Interaction with people who are vastly different in their decision-making process isn't easy, especially in romantic settings, and this often results in big misunderstandings that accumulate and sometimes lead to the end of the relationship. However ...
It's great to be different.
Being different is great for a relationship ánd for our personal growth, especially when we have at least a few important characteristics and interests in common. Those help us overcome the inevitable misunderstandings.
Good communication requires a basic understanding of why our partners do what they do. So, what lies beneath a rational person's seemingly cold, uncaring or confrontational behaviour?
It's taken me a few years, lots of observations and possibly thousands of conversations with my wonderful (rational) partner and many of my / his / our friends, to understand them better. In the interest of world peace, I'll gladly share my unscientific and premature conclusions with you.
First of all ...
All rational people are different.
That sounds like bad news, but it isn't, really. It makes our lives and our quest for understanding of life, the universe and everything much more interesting - at least when we care enough about that person to put in the extra effort. But bear with me, I'll try to make it worth your while.
It's good to know that, on an abstract level, rational people have a few characteristics in common, the most obvious one being ...
In my next few posts I'm going to try and dissect our rational partners' minds and look at the practical implications. I will focus on the bits that drive us nuts until we apply our own wonderful and talented brains to them and really try to understand.
Most of all, however tempting it can be to discard the rational creatures in our lives as detached cold fish, they're quite complex, fascinating and worthy of our love. They make amazing partners and can add tremendous value to so many aspects of our lives.
Continued in: Rational creature - part 2
Image: 'Close Up of The Thinker' by Todd Martin, available under a creative commons license. © 2005, Todd Martin.