Relationships are hard to get “right.” Hollywood presents idealized scenarios. Reality is a little trickier, especially if we aren’t exposed to good examples to learn from. Here’s a breakdown of what we don’t know, what we need to know, and how to put that knowledge to use.
Relationships Are Hard Because We’re Not Taught How to Make Them Work
It’s funny to think of not being good at “living” life. All of us, as humans, pride ourselves at being effective. Every one of us does things to the best of our ability. And yet, many relationships are not satisfying to the people in them. And many people wonder why being in a relationship is so hard.
Well, there are good reasons for relationship challenges. For starters, where did you learn how to be in a relationship? Maybe you saw some movies or watched other people. Maybe you saw examples of what not to do and vowed to do something different. Or perhaps you had examples that you thought were good but they are not proving to work in your current relationship.
Why Aren’t We Shown How to Make Relationships Work?
So why is it so many couples today find that relationships are hard?I believe it happens because we haven’t learned the skills to be a good mate. Yes I use the word skills because that’s what they are. It’s not that we aren’t made a certain way or we don’t click with our person, it’s because there is no “Relationship School” to learn how to be a good partner.
Most of us grow up to be good humans. We learn all the skills we need to become self sufficient. We hone our talents, go to schools, get jobs and then find the right person. All the skills we have learned up until this point are designed to help us succeed as an individual. Where are you learning how to grow, compromise and bond as a couple? In my view, it’s nowhere. We assume that if we find the “right” person, the one we love, the one who makes us feel amazing, everything else will just take care of itself.
Relationships Are Hard, But These Skills Can Help…
Would you just assume you can skip school and get a great job? Well that’s what we do as couples. We skip learning to be with another person. We just blindly go into a relationship and believe that if we have the right person everything will be great. And if it isn’t great, well, it just might not be the right person then.
Here are some ideas about what to learn to soften your relationship challenges. It’s hard at first but it helps your connection with your mate grow if you can learn these skills.
Understand That You And Your Loved One Don’t Always Want the Same Thing, and That’s Okay
The first thing to understand is that as much as you love your preferences, your partner love’s theirs just as much. Two people fighting for what they want is a disaster. You must learn to accept that you love what you love, and your partner love’s what they love, and they might be different.
How are you with understanding that the person you love might want something different? If you can get your head around this point you are on your way to greater understanding and a deepening in your relationship.
Learn How to Kindly Articulate Your Needs
The next part is figuring out how to tell your partner—with kindness, never criticism and blame—what you want. If you could think of every time to ask them as a “request” instead of a battle, you will save hundreds of hours of disagreement and possibly worse.
These are just two ideas for you to think about. And if you love your partner, this is one way to bring more love into your relationship. And I know that’s what every couple is after.
Those Two Lessons Go a Long Way Towards Making Relationships Easier
We need to understand and accept each other. We also need to be aware of and able to articulate our needs to one another.
Mutual acceptance and mutual fulfillment allow us to feel happier and closer, all while laying a solid foundation for our relationships in the future. Take what you’ve learned and apply it today! And then come back and share with us, in comments below, how it’s improved your life and the lives of those you love.
Still Having a Hard Time with Your Relationship? Here’s How You Can Get a Little More Help with Your Relationship?
Read a Book About Relationships
Can’t make it on Monday? Try improving your communication skills by reading Linda’s book, Safe. Happy. Loved. Simple Skills for Your Relationship. It just might teach you how kindly make requests and have your needs met. It may also help you better understand and accept one another. Why not give it a read?
Get Couples Counseling
Come in for couples counseling. Couples counseling can help you and your loved one get the most out of your relationship. It'll equip you with coping strategies and tools for communication that can help you argue less and love more.