"I am so excited about my terrible relationship!" I bet you have never heard that one before. Me either... and when it comes to relationships, we all want ones that encourage and strengthen us. Let's face it, what we really want are relationships that add value to our life. I know that sounds so self-centered, but before you tune out, let me ask you a few questions.
- Do you like being in a relationship that builds you up or tears you down?
- Do you like being in a relationship that is mentally or emotionally taxing?
- Do you enjoy feeling bad about the relationships in which you find yourself?
Most of us do not enjoy bad relationships. So, how do you begin to move down the path toward a good relationship? The answer may surprise you and the reason is because a healthy relationships do not begin with the other person, but with you.
You heard it correctly. A good relationship begins with you. It could be that you find yourself moving from one bad relationship to another. If so, what is the common factor? The answer is, "You." If I may, let me offer you a few thoughts that could give you a different perspective.
Who are you?
Know who you are. A lot of people I meet with and advise see themselves in terms of what others think about them. In the movie Runaway Bride, the character played by Julia Roberts, did not know what kind of eggs she really liked. If the guy she was dating liked it, she would like. If he liked poached eggs, she like poached eggs. If he liked scrambled eggs, she liked scrambled eggs. You get the picture. The point is that the eggs were a symbol of her own lack of identity. She was the person others wanted her to be and therefore missed the beautiful truth that she was created as an individual. Her beauty came from her own personal uniqueness. When she figured that one truth out, everything changed. She found freedom in being herself and not what others thought she should be.
The thoughts and expectations of others become a prison if you allow them to continue. If this describes you, take some time and begin to explore the question, "Who am I?" Understand your characteristics, tendencies, passions and desires. Get comfortable with who you are and if you do not like what you find, then you decide to change it from the inside out. That is very different than being pressed into the molds of someone else's expectations. Don't let the real you be hidden from those you love and care about. You are special.
Good relationships begin with you. Know who you are and start there.