How many of us live a life that is similar to a tennis match? I ask you out for lunch. We have a great time. The ball has now been hit into your court and I wait and wait and wait for you to ask me to lunch. But I want to have lunch again.. so what can I do?
I'll tell you what I do.... I ask a person to lunch two times in a row. Or three sometimes. I trust people to say no if they don't want to do it, but some people just don't initiate things and if I didn't, nothing would happen.
That's a simple example, but in other areas we think the same way. We are in a conflict. I go to you and explain my side and then think to myself, "OK, the ball is in your court." And I wait and I wait and I wait for you to come back to me and apologize or share your side. But I want to resolve the conflict, so what can I do?
I'll tell you what I do..... I keep going back to the person and trying again. Sometimes I take breaks in between to restore my emotional energy, but I head back to try to resolve things. I'm no hero, but I try to live as though the ball is always in my court.
So in the midst of a dysfunctional system, after there has been mistrust and triangulation as the norm, this principle definitely applies. If you don't trust me, the ball is in my court. It's time for me to go to you and ask you what the issue is. If I don't trust you, the ball is in my court. It's time for me to go to you and ask what the issue is. If I have heard that you don't like me, or if I don't like you, the ball is in my court. If someone told me something about you that may or may not be true, the ball is in my court. If I know someone has told you something about me that isn't true, the ball is in my court.
Waiting for someone else to take the initiative to resolve a past hurt may never result in healing and it it is a waste of time. Because only when these things are cleared up do we have the emotional energy to do beat the system.
If we stop viewing relationships as a tennis game, we are on our way to beating the dysfunctional system.