Model: Emotional Bankaccount

April 30th, 2018

You can see every relationship as having an emotional bankaccount.


Every time you feel positive towards someone is a deposit.

Eg. you feel understood by that person, you feel grateful towards that person, ...


Every time you feel negative towards that person is a withdrawal.

Eg. you feel misunderstood be that person, you feel anger towards that person, ...


At any given time you can check the balance of the bankaccount.

When the balance is positive: there is a lot of trust, more patience, assumed good intentions.

When the balance is negative: there is little trust, little patience, and assumed bad intentions.


An important aspect is that two people with a relationship have a different bank account towards the other.

The other person can have the feeling that everything is well in the relationship, while you have the feeling you're never understood. The other person can have a green balance towards you, while you have a red balance towards that person.

The opposite can also be true of course.


Is there a lot of distrust in the relationship? Maybe you haven't invested enough in the relationship.

How many deposits have you made in the other person's bankaccount, recently?

How many deposits have been made in yours?


How can you facilitate a moment where likely deposits will be made?


One way I did this was by baking pizza's and inviting the people I live with.

This meal together created the opportunity for people to express themselves and feel understood. We didn't even mention irritations towards each other or try to solve them. We just deposited in each other's bankaccounts. And this caused there to be less irritation towards each other.


(src: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People)