If you want to build a strong, happy, and fulfilling relationship, begin paying more attention to your partner’s bids (attempts) to connect with you.
Bids can be verbal or nonverbal, small or big, and serious or funny in nature. They can take the form of a question, an expression, or physical outreach. For instance, your partner might say to you, “Hey, why did your colleague come into a conflict with your manager at work?” or, “What would you like us to do this weekend?” or just, “Can you pass me the book, please?”
They could also pat you on the back affectionately or give you a warm, loving hug.
What you need to remember is that bids are often made in a subtle way on purpose since we’re afraid to put ourselves out there and be vulnerable. We’re afraid to say, “Pay attention to me. Connect with me.” So instead, we tell our partner a story or ask them a question in order to connect with them.
How can you respond to a bid?
You can do this in 3 ways:
– Acknowledging the bid
– Ignoring the bid
– Rejecting the bid
For example, when your partner works on an important project and lets out a heavy sigh, they are making a bid. To respond to their bit, you can turn towards them and ask them, “What’s wrong?”
Now try to imagine that you are washing the dishes and your partner asks you how you spent your day at work. You could respond to their question and share details about the important project you had that day with them or simply ignore them and continue washing the dishes.
Rejecting your partner’s bid to connect takes the form of a sharp, negative reply, such as “Why do you always have to bug me when I am trying to get things done?”
Why are bids important in a relationship?
When you and your partner make bids to connect, you form the basis of emotional connection, trust, respect, and passion. Because a healthy and strong relationship requires you and your partner to pay attention to each other every day. It requires you to listen to and be there for each other.
Never ignore or turn against your partner’s bids!
When you constantly ignore or turn against your partner’s bids for connection, they start to feel frustrated and become more inclined to criticize you. All this inevitably pushes you to be defensive and it’s likely to result in an argument.
How often should you make bids?
Make bids every day. Leave your partner a cute love post-it note on their pillow in the morning. Kiss them before they go to work. Give them a loving hug when they walk in the door. Put down your phone when they want to talk to you and listen to them.
Because when you make bids, you show your partner that you care about them. You show them that their feelings, needs, opinions, and wishes matter to you. You show them that everything that’s going on in their life means to you. You show them that you want to connect with them.