Ingenio Category: Relationship Coaching
The idea that hard work is a provision of a healthy relationship is an outdated and deceitful notion. The phrase is an accomplice when it comes to ignoring the core qualities of a strong relationship. Yes, there is hard work that must be done-- but it starts before two people have even gotten together, and it starts with just one person: you. One’s greatest responsibility is ensuring one enters a relationship with a clear understanding of who they are, what they need, and a reasonable, open-minded respect for their partner.
1. Not knowing yourself
Yep, it’s true. You can’t love someone else if you don’t love yourself. But what if you don’t know who you is? Deconditioning our compulsion for instant success, cultivating the building blocks of self-esteem, and learning what it really means to be present with ourselves may run boldly against the grain of our culturally-entrenched convention, but reaching that place is critical to being able to be in a healthy, committed, relationship built on appreciation and respect.
2. Not recognizing other’s needs
Just by virtue of existing on this earth, it’s most likely that your world revolves around a singular hero-figure: You. Our Id is present from our very onset into this world, and we’re constantly focused on our bodily needs, wants, desires, and impulses, and carefully navigating our way through the world while balancing our craving to nurture ourselves.
In each and every type of relationship, one of the most valuable qualities to possess is the ability to not just recognize someone else’s needs and desires, but appreciate and what those may be. Finding a partner that fits you lies in this critical notion: being able to perceive, appreciate, and respect someone for not just who they are, but provide them an avenue to fulfill those desires together—even if they may differ from your own. In a healthy relationship, you’d find both parties doing this equally for one another.
3. Don’t rely on your S.O. to make you happy
The goal is to walk down life's grand boulevard side by side holding hands, not on top of each other as one unit. Giving your partner space to be themselves is a monumentally overlooked lesson. Don't define yourself based on what you expect out of them. Find comfort and peace independent of anyone else’s presence. This is the greatest gift you can bring to someone in a relationship. You want to be with them because they make you happy—not because you need them in order to be happy.
4. Harboring insecurities
Falling back to #5, the importance of outlook on life and the internal acceptance of self and security are critical. Closely tied to this idea, and equally troubling, is harboring insecurities. Insecurity comes in plenty of forms, but whichever it is, it will ultimatley undermine a relationship. If you're constantly questioning a partner's faithfulness or asking yourself if your're good enough, your thoughts will manifest in the form of irrational, jealous, or needy behavior. Instead, accentuate positives in your relationship. Identify what may be holding you back and take steps to overcome them.
5. Unreasonable expectations
When was the last time you talked to a girlfriend who listed out the qualities her future husband has to meet? Or a guy who most likely assumes there are no good women out there? Even before crossing paths, we’ve eliminated a huge possibility of making a positive connection with someone special.
We are constantly flooded with backwards concepts of love and romance from the media that create a false image of what an ideal partner is. There’s only one thing that matters: character. If your list includes “tall,” “rich,” or “devastatingly handsome,” you’ve got a lot of work to do.