Is your marriage or other intimate relationship adding to your happiness or taking away from it? We all get into relationships because we believe it will make us happier and more satisfied. Why is it then that so many relationships end up the other way around and create more grief leaving us unhappy in relationship?
1. A relationship is a living organism or system. Like all natural organisms, it thrives when it is well fed, appreciated, exercised and nurtured. It is easy to forget this and take support from your partner for granted. When we forget or choose not to help our partner in nurturing our relationship, we are on the road to unhappy in relationship, no matter how much we believe we are justified in our actions or they are wrong in their approach or action.
2., Another key issue leading to unhappy in relationship is how humans have this strange idea that everyone else should be like them. We are all different just as much as all snowflakes are different. There has never been and never will be another person like you. When your partner is judged against your way of living, and with them believing that you should also be like them, there is the all-too-frequent argument about who is right and who is wrong and this never ends well. Judging each other as right or wrong just leads to arguments and negativity. Have you ever seen negativity give you the long-term results you really want?
3. Another common problem is a lack of problem solving skills on the part of one or both. Because of this, there is a focus on problems and blaming/complaining. In addition, we hang on to all the hurts that ever befall us by living this way. Then we let our trust of the other fade away because of the combined collection of unsolved problems. This of course, never ends well. What this does is set us on a path of mutual self-destruction. When we can’t solve problems and change our habits to better and more effective ones, we focus on materialism and consumption. Of course, there is a whole commercial world around us working daily to convince us to go down this path so is there any wonder it is prevalent in our society? Who could be blamed for succumbing to the combined influence of our upbringing, the more than 8,000 marketing messages most of us face each day, and the endless pressures exerted when we do our necessary shopping to bring in the weekly essential supplies? No, this is not our fault, in fact, it is likely that nobody has woken us up to the reality of what we are facing. Nevertheless, this lifestyle is counter-productive to the happy relationship we all want.
4. Another very common issue in unhappy relationships is telling the other person what to do. This creates a lot of resentment since nobody likes to be told what to do, no matter what age they are. When we tell others what to do, they tend to be resentful of this and turn to some form of aggression, whether active or passive. This rapidly creates one or both people being unhappy in relationship. It seems that it is more effective to talk about what we believe is important and then to let the other person decide what they want to do about that.
5. The final common cause of relationship problems is focusing on what the other does not do, instead of what they do do. It is easy to think up all of the things we should do or could do. It is more challenging to get them done. It is really easy to spot the things that aren’t done. Science has shown us that what we focus on resists change. So if we are focused on the problem it is unlikely the change. When we focus on what we want, and appreciate it with good feelings, it tends to increase. Appreciate even the smallest thing that your partner does do, and over time you will see more of it. Keep it up even if you don’t see a change right away, because it will make you feel better to the be looking for the good. When we are negative with others, it makes us feel badly as well.
I hope this has helped you understand how to get out of feeling unhappy in relationship.
Watch for the next post on what to do to get it working for you and your partner.
Take care, stay well, have fun!