Quick Tips #14: Working on your relationship
Question: My partner and I are currently working on our relationship to make it better. However, I can't help but feel that I'm doing more work than he is. How do I stay out of resenting him because of that and how do I encourage him to be more active.
That’s a really great question because many women are struggling with these feelings.
My advice is that you continue with your own work regardless of what anybody else is doing. When it comes to doing the work in the relationship, it has to come from both individuals.
Continue your own work:
Once one person changes their approach in the relationship, the whole dynamic tends to change.
Allow a 3 to 6 month period where you don’t put any pressure on your partner to change.
Do your own work and start looking for things that actually do work for you about your partner.
Find gratitude for the things that are great about him, so that it’s not just about what’s wrong with the other person and what they are not doing.
Start parenting your inner child:
It’s very easy for all of us to fall into that pattern of “it’s not fair I’m doing all this work alone”.
Remember that the resentment you are feeling towards your partner, is not actually all of who you are, it’s just a part of you. That is usually one of the inner child parts that says “it’s not fair”.
Keep in mind that things are not black and white. It is commonly the 10 year old inner child that goes on about the unfairness of the situation, and she can actually make any grown up life situation seem like things are black and white.
Parent your inner child and say: “You know what, sometimes fairness isn’t the most important thing. Sometimes it’s more important to do what needs to be done for us to be happy. So do I want to be happy or do I want to be right?”. That’s a question everybody should ask for themselves.
Honour your differences:
Often we are different personality types to our partner. We don’t necessarily know how the other person is working through or processing things.
Don’t project our own personal development journey onto other people and say they are not doing anything. They might actually be doing their own work in a different way and think that you are not doing anything that’s useful because of the kind of work that you are doing.
Take a personality test and get more information about you and your partner’s personality types.
Continue with your own work. Allow 3 to 6 months for the dynamic to change within the relationship. Practice regular gratitude towards the other person. Start parenting your inner children and find out more information about your differences.
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