The Gift of Relationship - Giving Your Best Self
What is the gift of relationship? What does it mean to be in one? These are among the many questions couples have as they ponder what their relationship means to each other.
My primary focus today is beginning to address this relationship perspective question in more detail. This is not meant to be a how to guide on constructing your relationship but may give you some ideas about where you want your experiences withing your relationship to go.
Fact or Myth.. "Giving Up Myself is Expected."
Do you agree with this? I do not. I think on the contrary that having a relationship with someone does not mean giving up the person that you are. Sure there may be some things that change as you transition from being single towards becoming a couple, but that does not mean you lose your sense of self in the process of offering yourself to another. It means you are agreeing to share yourself with another person because you want to share yourself. Equally, your partner is not giving up themselves but sharing themselves with you. Within this process of sharing, you more than likely find joy in the gift of each other that cannot be bought ...but can be cultivated through refined expressions and interactions. (Part of the training I teach through my sessions to help build these skill sets.) Some may take comfort in their material resources or accomplishments as a means to maintain a relationship, however, no matter how prosperous you may be...You cannot replace the exchanges that lead to love with money or accomplishments. Nor can you make a person give more of themselves than they are willing to give when it comes to having a relationship. Love cannot be rushed but it can be developed if two people are willing.
If you find yourself trying to win love by seeking approval of others or the affirmation of another's perspective of your worth, you may be missing the most valuable asset that you have in your relationship. You. Trying to cultivate love without recognizing what you have to offer in love can be quite the challenge. Here are some points that I believe can help this type of personality to have more success with their satisfaction in the relationship.
7 Key points to remember for a person not fully aware of what they bring to a relationship:
1. You both are in this relationship by choice, not by obligation.
2. You chose to be with one another for what you enjoy about being with one another. Nagging, complaining, conflict and guilt driven relationships rarely are ones that a person wants to develop.
3. You were not forced into this relationship, you both willingly entered into it. Now that is a refreshing thought...there is something about you that somebody else liked on this planet without you having to manipulate their choices. The fact is...Who knows all the reasons why someone likes someone enough to be in relationship with them...for some it's appearance, humor, responsible, silliness....people are different and have different preferences. Your unique brand of you is an awesome gift to share with someone you love irregardless of how well you think you convey the love a person needs or not. You are lovable.
Learning to be capable of giving and receiving love is part of your personal revelation. Sharing yourself can be a freedom when it is unshackled from previous inhibitions that would deem you less competent in your ability to love compatibly.
4. Expect things to change. As life's situations change..so to people. You have a responsibility to like yourself through your changes and trust God for your relationship and the persons you will both grow to be.
5. Stop fearing the worst and make the most of moments you have. Create opportunities and embrace the moments you have instead of squandering them on insecurities or the need to be affirmed by them.
6. Your partner is not obligated to be your savior from emotional duress. For the Christian...A healthy perspective that I believe in is that God is the one who has that place. No person is designed to share all your emotional duress. While as a companion one may lean more on them than others, they may help you to process through some things, they are not your 24 hour health care professional. Having a healthy support system in place can help you to keep your expectations balanced.
7. A relationship should be respected by respecting the partner within it. Their goals, interests, beliefs...all play a part. Give a person room to be the person they want to be. Tell them what you need but don't hog every ounce of free time they have....give them time to explore their own interests. If your fear is that they will find someone else...that may be an indicator of low self esteem and that you are not maximizing the potential of having a mutually satisfying relationship. Locking someone up time wise is not a way to gain the assurance that they have chosen you for love's sake. Insecurity driven relationships can be retarded from developing trust and mutual respect.
Calvin L. Smith, MA, LPC
Calvin is a licensed Christian Counselor. He received his first masters degree in Christian Counseling from Oral Roberts University.
Welcome to Membership Only.
Select Your Topic of Interest:
1. Recovering Your Love, Getting Your Intimacy Back
2. Fixing a Broken Relationship
3. Finding the Courage to Trust Again
4. Believing the Best in Someone Is more than Mental Positivity
5. Eight Ways to Know When It's Time to Call It a Relationship.
6. Five Ways to Keep Your Friends After Deciding to Have a Relationship.
7. Letting Someone Down Easy. Overcoming The Fear of Saying "No"
8. How Can I be Sexy, Saved, and Successful at Love?
9. So you want to be a girlfriend? 7 ways to tell if you got what he's looking for.
10. While you were away. How to overcome the insecurity of a mistrusting partner.
11. Addiction and Relationships..