Y is for Yes, And…

Creating space for possibility is a necessity for collaboration in both dating and design. One technique for building on the ideas of your collaborator, or partner, is an exercise called “yes, and.” First you acknowledge the other person’s idea, and then add something of your own. For example, you might say, “Yes, a date tonight sounds like fun, and maybe we could get ice cream too!”

Relationship researcher John Gottman calls this “making bids,” and explains that a person can turn toward, turn away or turn against a bid from their partner. He says that successful relationships occur when both partners can make bids and turn toward each other’s bids, acknowledging their needs and desires.

In both dating and design, a “yes, and,” paired with an open mind and an adventurous spirit, can create infinite possibilities for connection.