We are all in a relationship. You may not be married or dating, but you are definitely in a relationship with someone; probably many people or maybe just a few like me. Whether it’s family members, friends, coworkers, neighbors, or even that person you talk to online everyday, we are all in relationships, but how healthy are your relationships?
Not all relationships are the same. Whether you’ve known someone for 10 years or 10 days, every relationship and connection that you have with someone is different. The type of relationship does not matter, what does matter is how you feel when you are with them.
Do you notice that some of your relationships feel draining or exhausting? Are you feeling anxious, overwhelmed, irritated, or even judged when you spend time with certain people on your life? If you answered yes, you are probably lacking the 4 Things You Need to have a Healthy Relationship:
1. love + care
This is the obvious one, right? There are different types of relationships, yes, but most of them involve a level of care or love for the other person. There are some relationships don’t really involve deep affections but basic care for the other individuals is a part of any relationship.
If you are in a relationship where you don’t feel loved, determine your Love Language. Knowing how you show and feel loved is important for your relationships.
With a little help from The 5 Love Languages®, (Quality Time, Acts of Service, Words of Affirmation, Receiving Gifts, and Physical Touch) you can learn to identify the root of your conflicts, give and receive love in more meaningful ways, and grow closer than ever. Your Love Language profile will explain your primary love language, what it means, and how you can use it to connect to others.Dr. Gary Chapman
Share your Love Languages with those you are in relationships with by taking the Love Languages Quiz, created by Dr. Gary Chapman. Your Love Language is not just for romantic and intimate relationships. My friendships and relationships with family members have benefited from knowing each others Love Languages.
Think about your past a current relationships. Without love and care what does a relationship look like?
There are many different types of support; emotional support, financial support, spiritual support, care giving and other types of physical support. The support we receive in our relationships is extremely important for the relationship to feel healthy. But, when the support given in a relationship does not feel like a mutual exchange of energy, that relationship will feel imbalance and toxic.
Yes, there are times in relationships where one person is giving more than the other person but that does not mean that one person is doing all the supporting and the other is not contributing to the relationship. Also, know that the type of support being exchanged does not have to be same type of support. While one person may be more financially supporting the other, their partner may be providing them with emotional support.
What does a relationship look like without some type of support? Think about your current and past relationships.
3. trust + loyalty
Many relationships lack trust and loyalty because they lack boundaries. Without boundaries in your relationships, it is so easy have your trust violated or to feel like someone is not being loyal to you. You can probably relate to having trust issues in your relationships or being in a relationship with someone who does not trust you.
I have never seen a healthy relationship without trust. As soon as your partner, friend, or family member lies to you, manipulates you, or uses you, it can feel so difficult trust again. Build strong boundaries in your relationships and see if the other person in your relationship is loyal to you enough to maintain those boundaries and not violate them.
Think about your past and current relationships. What is a relationship without trust and loyalty?
*the most important aspect in a relationship.
It’s rare to hear someone talk about respect being an important aspect of their relationship even though the Queen herself, Aretha Franklin has an entire song about it from 1967. Have you ever been disrespected in your relationships? Probably. I know I have, and I remember allowing this disrespect especially if it was from a family member.
Having basic human respect in your relationship is most important in order for that relationship to be balanced and feel safe (comfortable and accepting). Healthy relationships begin and end with respect which is why respect is the most important part of a healthy relationship.
What is love and care without respect?
What is trust and loyalty without respect?
What is support without respect?
You may be thinking about specific people you are in relationship with who are disrespectful, unsupportive, disloyal, and/or unloving. If you are questioning what specific things would be considered unhealthy in a relationship, check out this article on Healthline, Healthy Relationships: 32 Signs, Tips, Red Flags, and More. Knowing the four things you need to have a healthy relationship may not make it easy to redefine or release those individuals who are toxic for you, but ask yourself:
- What is it costing me to continue to maintain a relationship with someone who makes me feel this way?
If you need support with understanding how to manifest only loving and respectful relationships, to set boundaries, and how you can be more assertive in your relationships, The Heart Advocate provides virtual Self-love Therapy, including the No Bullshit Self-love program that is here for your heart and your relationships.
I look forward to connecting with you.
© 2020 Ta’lor L. Pinkston, The Heart Advocate