Relationships are the sources of some of our most blissful, fulfilling, and pleasurable experiences when they are working. But when they are not, they can be the roots of some of our greatest pain.
When our relationships are going well, we walk with lightness in our steps. Sunshine follows us everywhere, and the birds are always singing. When relationships are NOT going well, we drag ourselves through the day with a dark cloud following us everywhere, and you cannot hear a peep from the birds.
To avoid the pain and maximize the pleasure of your connectedness, here are five common relationship issues and misunderstandings to avoid:
5 Relationship Issues That Will Ruin Any Relationship
1. It is your partner’s job to “fix” you.
As you go through life, you learn how to fear, doubt, and form limiting beliefs about yourself and the greater world at large. This “stuff” of yours likely has negative consequences on your mental, emotional, and physical states – perhaps making you feel broken in some ways. But it is NOT your partner’s job to “fix” you.
The tools of love, while powerful, are not necessarily the tools that can ease fear, dispel doubt, and repair limiting beliefs. If you find the above affecting your quality of life and causes relationship issues, seek out the help of a counselor, a coach, or a therapist.
If you rely on your partner, then you are adding a burden that the relationship was NOT meant to bare.
2. Your relationship has space for your ‘baggage’.
Airlines limit your carry on items to two. The more checked baggage you have, the higher the fee they charge you. There is a reason baggage is limited: when you embark on new adventures, go forth with ONLY what you need and leave the rest behind.
Your relationship has space for two – you and your partner. If you bring relationship issues, and the mental and emotional turmoils of past loves, you undoubtedly set yourself up for a challenging road ahead.
Want your relationship to succeed? Then adhere to the wise words of “leave your baggage at the door.”
3. Assuming you are loved ‘unconditionally’.
I get it – I too, was raised on the “Disney”-inspired notion of happily-ever-after and the unconditional love that comes with it. But, have you ever stopped to wonder what happens after the handsome prince rescues the damsel in distress? They kiss, and ride off into the sunset – but then what?
That’s when the REAL relationship happens and the work to make it a lasting and fulfilling one begins. The biggest mistake I see couples make is they assume their partner loves them unconditionally. That no matter what they say or do, their partner will continue to love them.
Unconditional – meaning without conditions; yet you, me, and everyone else has conditions (we may not want to acknowledge them) that need to be met for our relationship to last and our love to flourish.
If you really are in your relationship for the long haul, drop the unconditional fantasy and dig in to getting to know and understanding your partner, as well as what their conditions are. Once you understand those, you can make it your mission to ensure those conditions are always met.
4. Believing that how you show/express love is how your partner wants to be shown love.
In Gary Chapman‘s relationship must-read book “The Five Love Languages,” Chapman discusses in depth about how within relationships, there are typically five distinct ways we show how to express love to our partners.
The challenge couples face: HOW you show love and want to be shown love, may be completely different than your partner’s. In essence, you are speaking different love languages. Imagine going to China and trying to speak Greek… you may not get as far as you would like.
Do yourself a favor and read the book. Better yet, make it a mandatory reading for the relationship, and have a discussion about it before you go to bed each night.
5. Relying on sex to ‘solve the problems’.
A friend of mine would often joke that whenever his relationships were in a rough spot, he would just spend a little more time in the “Boom Boom Room“. Then everything would be OK. To date, he still hasn’t found the long-term relationship he wants.
Sex has an important role in the relationship. But when that role starts to involve sweeping relationship issues under the rug with the rest of the dirt, it is only a matter of time before the bond – and sex life – turn sour.
The rug can only hide so much. So if you want a relationship that lasts, you have to make it a habit to clean under the rug – often. The cool thing is that, the more you clean, the less there is to clean.
I suggest setting a time, once a week, for a regular relationship check-up. During this time, you and your partner can talk about what is going great, and what you can improve upon.
Making regular communication like this a priority will not only keep the space under the rug clean, it will also ensure that the sizzle stays in your sex life.
Do YOU have any relationship issues that might be affecting your partner?