It is often said that what you don’t say, you act, and that body language makes up for more than half of any communication. People read meaning into what you don’t say more than what you actually say, and it all starts in the mind.
Our mind is so powerful, it can stop us from doing certain things, it can also propel us to seek new heights. We can either have a very fulfilling relationship, especially, one that is long term or one that is riddled with so many troubles and emotional traumas.
Some thoughts that can destroy a long term relationship are listed below. While I know it’s really hard to let go of such thoughts (they had been residents in our heads for so long), it is important to let go of them if we truly want a fulfilling relationship. Don’t worry; we are all in the trenches together. Here’s hoping that we all get out at the other end, with our relationships all the better for it. Here we go:
- The reality of my relationship should fit into my expectations
I must say, I had a bit of expectations when I started dating and even when I got married, but I would merely be lying if I say all of those expectations were met. No, some of my expectations were shattered, dashed to tiny pieces, which cannot be pieced together.
For instance, while we were dating, my husband was fond of recording songs he sang with his husky voice and when we would see, he would play those songs for me, sometimes I would transfer the songs to my own phone via Infared, and later Bluetooth. I never got tired of listening to my lover’s song or the words he said. It was a dream come true to have a man who liked to serenade me.
Well…don’t ask me when last he did that. Oh, he still sings, in church or along to the musical videos he likes to watch a lot. I struggled with having my fantasy gone. I wanted my man to continue singing to me, but it obviously wasn’t that important again. I have overgrown that expectation but there are other expectations that still leave me wondering sometimes if the same man I’m married to was the same one I dated. Sometimes, I just don’t know.
- My partner is holding me back
In a long-term relationship it can sometimes occur that we start to see others around us that we may be attracted to or connect to on some level, yet we are in a relationship, thus ‘restricted’ to one person, meaning we can’t have sexual experiences with these people we are attracted to.
And sometimes, it is not about sexual attraction at all, you just feel like your partner is holding you back from enjoying some life experiences, because you have to run everything by your partner.
For the person having this thought, it is frustration galore, and they might even start to blame their partner for holding them “captive”. It is a sign of immaturity and shows that they don’t yet realise that they indeed have a choice every single day they wake up, whether to run after new sexual experiences, to pursue that hobby, without the consent of their partner or stay committed in their relationship.
The fear of admitting the truth to oneself is the root of this thought pattern. The simple truth is, they are not happy in your relationship and you think, leaving it will solve the problem. No, it won’t, it will only create another.
If we simply sat and asked ourselves what we truly want, we would no longer point the finger of blame at our partners and instead make a mindful choice that brings full commitment to either decision, we make; to stay or to leave.
This creates a strong presence and authenticity in a relationship that our partners can feel.
- I will be vulnerable and honest…if my partner is first
Vulnerability doesn’t come easy to me. It takes year and years of familiarity and walking on eggshells to get there. I did not date my husband for long before getting hitched to him. With him, it was like going from zero to hundred in the twinkle of an eye.
He became the dumping ground for all the thoughts in my head; good or bad. He heard it all and then, the reality of spending every day together hit us, we were getting on each other’s nerves and I started to collect grudge as easily as collecting bottle corks.
I shut down completely and shut him out. I started to be cautious with my words with him, I said only the things, I thought he wanted to hear. My tap wasn’t running that often anymore. I wasn’t expressing myself and if I had continued with that trend, I would have seen the end of my marriage long before now.
It takes courage to live our authentic lives and be truly vulnerable with our partners. Waiting for our partners to take the first step in opening up might not always work. If partners meet each other in the middle, it makes things a lot easier and if not, then, it is still cool for you to take the first step to open up. Your heart will thank you as mine does every day.
However, if opening up means being judged or put you down… then, you need to evaluate your choices again.
- I’m not good enough or worthy enough
Provided, you can answer, this question; Do you have to be good enough to love?
Wanting to be good enough or worthy enough for a partnership comes from our ego and our need to be loved and accepted.
Yet it doesn’t matter in the slightest if it was true that we aren’t good enough, all we have to do is love with all our hearts anyway.
- I need my partner to be happy
Once, I was able to get rid of this thought from my head, I felt a lot freer. My happiness is MY business. It is not dependent on how partner treats me or not, but it will be nice, if he treated me well.
Sometimes, and this is especially true of long term relationships, we become so entangled in our relationships that we sometimes forget we are two individuals with individual needs and desires.
We start looking to the person we love for our happiness, the problem with that is, the only place happiness dwells is within not without.
The moment we cease looking for happiness from other people/ sources than ourselves, we will be happy and this will extend to our relationship.
Those are five thoughts that we all need to ditch, if we really care about the health of our long term relationships. I’m still dealing with some, I have overcome some and hoping some never show up in my head at all.
Whatever be the case, stay in love!
Kristine is a member of The Lovelint team. She is a down to earth person, who says it as it is. Having given relationship advice for years in a national daily, she has found out that fear is one of the main reasons holding people back from enjoying a healthy, happy relationship. She is married with kids and is willing to listen to you and help as much as you let her to.