Stick or Carrot?

keep-calm-and-free-scotland-4Its the hottest topic in the news and thus far I have managed to avoid commenting on it but the heat is rising and I can no longer keep my tongue in my head!

On Thursday 18th September 2014 Scotland will probably vote to become a country in its own right and good for them. They deserve a selfish moment and frankly, after the way the Scottish people have been treated by the powers in London I would not blame them.

In all relationships harmony is ensured when all involved are benefiting, feel content and loved. Here are some key pointers to a healthy relationship;

Make good on your words. Follow through on your promises. When you say you’re going to do something, do it. Don’t say that you’ll stay in Europe, or invest in infrastructure, and then blow it off or simply forget about it. What this does is systematically destroy trust. And relationships need trust in order to thrive.

Admit your mistakes. If you know you’ve done something to hurt your partner, intentionally or not, own up to it. Humble yourself and apologize sincerely, without making excuses or justifications like “I’m sorry you made me angry.”

  • Commit to changing your behavior. If you notice yourself apologizing for the same mistake over and over, step it up a level. Tell your people that you recognize this mistake keeps happening, and you want to train yourself to stop. Request help and ask for them to gently point it out to you when you’re making this mistake again.

Be realistic. Every relationship has disagreements and days when staying isn’t the easiest choice. But what makes a relationship healthy is choosing to resolve those problems and push through the hard days, instead of just letting issues and resentment fester.

  • Review your expectations. Do you see your partner as a person, with both winning qualities and flaws, or as someone you expect to be perfect? If your expectations are so astronomical that no one could live up to them 100% of the time, you’re setting up your relationship for failure.
  • Accept that conflict happens. If you expect to be in a long-term relationship, you’re bound to have the occasional disagreement. Remember that one argument isn’t the end of everything, and there’s no person on earth that you’d agree with all the time.
  • Always ask yourself whether you’re better off in the relationship than out of it. If you don’t think you’re better off in the relationship, then you probably should have a serious discussion with your partner. In a loving relationship, this question almost always gets a simple “Yes.”

Put the stick away. In a loving relationship your partner will want to stay because the benefits are clear and do not require explanation or reinforcement.

  • Fear of loss often brings with it extra effort to hold the relationship together. While one partner might start looking for a safe backup plan the other might pour in the love to alleviate the fears or the other.
  • A partner who knows they have failed to put in to the relationship everything they could and fears they might looses everything may turn aggressive and be tempted to get the stick out and threaten their partner.

In the England + Scotland relationship it is clear to me, as an outside observer, who wants the relationship to endure and who feels unloved. The people of Scotland would not be seeking their independence if they felt loved and if England had anything to offer I am sure it would be offering it but England knows it is close to leaving the relationship.

Scotland is in the powerful position in this relationship, it is making the decisions and while it thinks like this England must decide if it wants to put the effort in to the relationship to keep it together or let it end. It seems to me that England knows it has failed to give enough and it knows it has nothing more to offer. England has resorted to threats, get the stick out.

Some of the things England have threatened;

  1. Currency collapse, bankruptcy, irrelevance and isolation. There will even be a frontier, doubtless with barking dogs, searchlights and minefields planted with exploding haggises (Peter Hitchens – The Daily Mail)
  2. Guards may be ordered to line the 95-mile English-Scottish border if the majority of Scottish people voted for independence in an upcoming referendum. (British Labour party leader Ed Miliband)

I could go on. But I wont. The thing is, I am in England and I am English. I do not get a vote. And what is more, I should not even get a say in it. The blanket coverage of the vote in Scotland here in English media and its attempts to convince me we are “Better together” are simply not relevant to my situation. This propaganda only serves to reveal our leaders in London as the fools they are.

The “no” vote should be all about pouring love over Scotland and its people and reinforcing the benefits of being together, not threatening them with the permanence and negative repercussions of a vote for independence. Personally I would like Scotland to vote “Yes” and when they do I will be celebrating with them. The escape from the overbearing, repressive, controlling, bullying, lying, greedy, selfish, narcissistic leadership in London is something we should all be campaigning for.

Put the sticks away, I want to see the carrots.