Relationships: Going Deeper
As we learned in the Basics, taking inventory and treasuring quality relationships is key. What about examining your role in relationships? Let's go deeper.
Maintaining your identity in relationships
Losing or morphing identity in relationships is extremely common. Sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse, and it also depends on the type of relationship you are in. Losing your identity is not the same as changing or maturing in a healthy way. For example, the transition from maiden to mother can feel like your identity is lost but instead it is just a natural progression of change (which you still have every right to mourn). When you undergo a major life change--perhaps entering motherhood, or getting married, or starting a new job--you are still always yourself at the core. You aren't just a mother, or just a wife, or just a journalist...these are just attributes.
But when we are in relationships, usually our most intimate ones, we may feel like we need to be or act a certain way, or perhaps aren't given the room to fully express ourselves. If you feel this way, it is dimming your light and your magnetism. It's that simple. If this is the case, it's time for change--either from within you, or by changing your relationship with the situation that is playing in to an unhealthy identity change.
communicating your needs
Being able to ask for exactly what you want or need can be incredibly challenging. It often puts us outside of our comfort zone, and many of us just choose to keep quiet instead. But in order to participate in healthy partnerships and build a strong community, we all need to speak from the clearest, most authentic versions of ourselves.
But communicating our needs is a two way street. We need to be able to share openly, AND we need to be heard by those who understand or care to listen. Take some time to examine your lines of communication--are they working well from both directions? What could be improved?
One last thing, saying no is just as powerful as saying yes. Be realistic with your capabilities and who you share them with!
In order to help you fully integrate all of this information, please enjoy the Relationship bonuses for a worksheet on taking inventory of your relationships.
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All rights reserved. These writings or any portion there of many not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the expressed written permission of the author except for the use of brief quotations in a review. These writings are not intended as a substitute for the medical advice of physicians. The reader should regularly consult a physician in matters related to his/her health and particularly with respect to any symptoms that may require diagnosis or medical attention.