Healthy relationships require balance in order to thrive. Unfortunately, we don’t always take the time and effort required to find and maintain balance with our partners. Often, one person feels that they have more responsibilities than the other or that there are unrealistic expectations that have been thrust upon them. This can lead to feeling unappreciated or resentful of their partner over time.
Finding balance takes hard work and open communication but is key to a lasting, fulfilling relationship.
Here are 3 tips to build a better, more balanced relationship:
1. Divide responsibilities in a way that is fair and agreed upon so that both people feel valued and appreciated.
Division of labor for household chores can be a big area of contention in a relationship. There are often preconceived notions that certain responsibilities should fall on a man or woman due to traditional gender roles. Challenge these assumptions by having conversations with your partner to determine what works best for your unique partnership. One person may be more willing or able to clean the house while the other is more equipped to balance the finances, for example. Or maybe certain tasks require trading off each week.
Be honest with yourself. When looking at the totality of the relationship, are you taking on an equal amount of responsibility as your partner? Who is actually doing more for the betterment of the relationship? Is it heavily skewed towards one person or the other? If so, consider where these shifts in balance occur and how you can correct them.
The arrangement has to work for both people. When fair and clear expectations are set, it helps to build a connection.
2. Relying on your partner to solve all your problems is an unrealistic expectation. Take responsibility to create your own joy.
It is a common problem in relationships that one partner overly depends on the other to fulfill them, make them feel better about themselves, or fill their emptiness. Our partners are meant to love, support, and help us, but they cannot be responsible for fixing all of our problems. It is an unfair and unattainable expectation to place on someone else and can be damaging to the relationship.
We all come to relationships with unrealistic expectations. Ask yourself, “What are the unfair expectations that I have for my partner?” Take ownership of creating your own joy, and know that it is not your partner’s responsibility to solve all your problems. This will shift some of the unnecessary weight off of them and onto your own shoulders, where it belongs.
3. The desire to share is key to blessings and fulfillment. Make your relationship based on mutual sharing more than receiving.
For the most part, when we start a new relationship, we focus on what we receive from our significant other, whether it’s good feelings, love, or comfort. At some point, hopefully early on, we should start to shift our thinking to how much we are giving, not just expecting, from them.
The desire to share is key to unlocking blessings and fulfillment. It not only builds a stronger relationship with our partner but also with the Creator. Try focusing on a desire to share with your partner and see how it strengthens your relationship dynamic.
Finding balance in a relationship takes effort, practice, and openness. Work on creating a safe space for you both to communicate from a place of honesty. Challenge your expectations when it comes to roles and responsibilities, especially as it relates to creating your own joy, and focus attention on giving each other more than you receive. This will lead to a healthier, more balanced relationship.