Over the past several months I have noticed a consistent theme popping up with my clients: creating and/or maintaining healthy relationships.
Whether it is with a partner, a spouse, a friend, or a family member, resolving issues with close relationships has probably been pretty much dominating our conversations.
We are social beings after all, we need interaction with other people. We literally cannot go throughout life without it. So when a relationship is not working or causing distress, it can really impact many other areas of our lives.
I therefore believe that healthy, nurturing relationships are essential to living a balanced, blissful life.
My mother always told me, “You are the company you keep!” This is honestly some of the best advice that she ever gave me, because I think it applies to literally every relationship that you have in your life. In order to maintain balance and health, you need to have supportive, healthy, nurturing, beautiful relationships with like-minded people. So if someone is mean, toxic, negative, or causing you distress, it’s time to take a step back from the relationship and reassess.
So this month both on the blog and in the Blissful Warriors Facebook Group, we are focusing on how to create and/or maintain healthy relationships.
I will be covering 3 of the most common questions I get asked:
– What is your #1 tip for someone wanting to create healthy relationships in their life?
– How can I establish healthy boundaries?
– How do we fight the right way (yes, this is a thing!)?
First, let’s do a quick check-in to see how your relationships are measuring up.
If you feel like you might be in an unhealthy relationship, check for these signs:
– Feel like you cannot disagree with the other person
– Feel pressured to change who you are for them
– Distrust (noticing that you have to justify where you go, who you see, financial expenses, etc.)
– Feel like you can’t do things that you enjoy
– Feel obligated or forced to have sex
– No privacy in your life
– There is yelling or physical violence in arguments (if you are in a violent relationship and feel unsafe, I would recommend reaching out immediately for help – here is some information on how to do so: http://www.thehotline.org/)
– Manipulation or control is present
– Don’t try to make time to spend with each other
– Arguments are not ever resolved fairly
– Lack of respect for each other or each others’ friends and family
– Neglect yourself for the sake of your partner
So what are the components of a healthy relationship?
– Mutual respect between the both of you
– You trust in each other
– You are honest with each other
– You support each other in the good times and the bad times
– There is a sense of fairness/equality in the relationship
– You are able to maintain separate identities safely and without conflict
– There is good communication between you
Take a look at those 2 lists – under which category do your current relationships fall?
For those that checked off several components in the first list and feel like they are struggling with creating (or maintaining) healthy relationships – trust me, you are not the only one. I want you to know that many people deal with one of these components at one point or another in their lives
The best thing you can do is learn from the situation and seek guidance on how to move forward.
And I want to provide you with some guidance RIGHT NOW.
So let’s start with my #1 tip for creating / maintaining healthy relationships in your life.
The beauty of this tip is that it is one of the BIGGEST game changers, and it doesn’t even involve the other person. It is something YOU can do for YOURSELF.
Check your expectations…and adjust accordingly.
Unhealthy relationships can be the result of many things, but time and time again I see people simply placing way too high of expectations on the other person and then becoming disappointed when that person can’t deliver.
I truly believe that adjusting your expectations of what the other person can provide you will lead to greater satisfaction and less conflict.
Part of this is being able to notice cues from the other person’s behavior and subsequently adjusting your interactions. For example, if you are dating someone who keeps breaking dates and ignoring you when you try to reach out – accept that they are probably not able to give you what you need at this time and consider adjusting your expectations of the relationship or moving on altogether. Either way, definitely stop trying to force them into giving you something that they simply can’t give you.
Remember that we CANNOT control the behaviors of others, but we CAN control our own behaviors and reactions. Too often in life we are focused on the actions of the other person rather than just focusing on ourselves and we set ourselves up for disappointment, heartache, and anger.
Happiness does not come from others; it comes from within.
You are responsible for YOU and that is it.
So stop expecting others to take care of you, like you, love you, vouch for you, speak on your behalf, change their behaviors for you, or do things for you. Everyone is in their own head, living their own life, dealing with their own issues. You need to stop worrying so much about everyone else and just focus on YOU.
If someone is engaging in unhealthy behaviors, you can’t expect them to change for you or because you want them to. That is their journey, and you putting the expectation on them to change because you want them to will only lead to disappointment for you.
If someone is consistently not committing to you in a relationship (whether romantic or friendship), stop expecting them to show up for you. Either leave the relationship or accept it for what it is. If you continue to expect something that they cannot deliver, you will continue to be disappointed.
So if you feel like there is a person in your life that is constantly disappointing you, take my advice and check your expectations.
Ask yourself these questions:
–> Can this person truly be who you want them to be?
–> Am I projecting unrealistic expectations on them?
–> If so, how can I adjust MY interactions with them to make things better for myself?
OWN your power, OWN your life, OWN your relationships.
Create the life that you want for yourself!
And if you have tried this technique, I would love to hear your thoughts.
Comment below and let me know how it went!