[The 50/50 Myth]

“Marry the right person. This one decision will determine 90% of your happiness or misery.” — Jackson Brown Jr.


The person you choose as your life partner is arguably the most important choice you’ll ever make. That single choice impacts your habits, your lifestyle, your routine, your health, your financial status, your peace of mind, etc.

And yet… no one teaches us what a healthy relationship looks like or how to be a great partner.

I’m a fan of Brené Brown’s perspective on this. (She’s the bestselling author of 7 books including Dare To Lead and Atlas of the Heart.)

On the Tim Ferriss Show, she debunked one of the biggest myths about marriage. (You might have seen this 30-second video clip go viral.)

“Everyone says marriage should be 50/50.” Brené firmly disagrees, saying “it’s never 50/50. Ever.”

Here’s why…

It’d be impossible for both you and your partner to be able to put in exactly the same energy to the relationship every single day.

Everyone has tough days once in a while.

Instead, Brené and her husband “check in” by sharing their energy levels on a scale of 100.

Here’s how it works:


Step 1.

Before you see your partner, take 2 mins to check in with yourself.

Think about this question:

How much energy, patience, and kindness do I have tonight? Realistically, how much can I contribute to our relationship?

Both people should strive for 100%. But if Brené had an extremely tough and emotional day, she might come home and say “I’ve got 10%.”

Step 2.

Ask the other person where they’re at.

Maybe Brené’s husband had a fantastic day. So he’ll say “Don’t worry— I’ve got the 90% tonight.”

He can then lean in and take care of household tasks, order dinner, or just be there for emotional support. (Here are 5 other ways to be supportive).

Step 3.

If both people are feeling below 50%, that’s completely okay! Just make sure you sit down and figure out a “plan of kindness.”

  • How are both of you going to restore your own energy that night?

  • How can you avoid accidentally hurting each other?

  • How can you show each other some compassion tonight?

I love this article from Esther Perel. We all have to let go of being the “perfect” partner, and instead focus on being a self-aware one.


We often expect our partners to read our minds and know exactly how we’re feeling… which isn’t fair.

Instead, this method forces you to: 

1). Check in with yourself,

2). Communicate clearly, and 

3). Keep empathy at the forefront.

Btw, this isn’t about “score-keeping.” If someone has 10% a few nights in a row, you don’t always have to “make up for” the other 90%.

In other words, your total doesn’t have to add to 100. You can both be low-energy that night.

The only important thing is that you each strive for 100, communicate where you’re at, and ask for what you need.

The entire podcast interview between Brené and Tim is worth a listen: Striving vs. Self Acceptance, Saving Marriages, and more.

Until next week,


P.S. Thank you to everyone who booked a coaching call with me in November. It was such an honor meeting all of you. And December is already filling up. If you’re considering becoming a thought leader on LinkedIn, book your coaching session now. You can read tons of client reviews here. 🔥

P.P.S. Sending a warm welcome to everyone who joined The Quiet Rich community since last week! Learn more about The Quiet Rich here. 🎉