We often have difficulty knowing what we want IN a relationship and FROM a relationship. Many of us do not know. Maybe we do not want to be alone, or we are in a relationship because the other person really needs us, or that relationship provides for you financially, or you have been with this person so long you cannot see another way, or you just need to be with someone because being single has negative connotations.. Whatever the reason, many of us do not know why we are not cultivating the relationships we want and are dissatisfied with the ones we have.
You may have been given the advice, "when its the right person it will all be easy and fall into place"? In my experience that is true to some extent for some of the time....
I usually start by asking someone- "What do you think you can bring to a relationship"?(intimate, friendship, colleague).
What are your core values and strengths? By values I am not referring to whether you like basketball or football, but rather your feelings around family, children, money, religion & lifestyle. If one of you would like to gain status and money and the other one wants a simple quiet life, the value sets are opposing and are likely to cause issues.
Having completely divergent personalities and ideas of what is right and wrong is also quite hard to contend with in any relationship.
All relationships are difficult and require work, compromise and cooperation.
However before we are ever ready to have a long-term adult relationship with another person we need to know ourselves, we need to know what is important to us, what we need, what are our strengths and weaknesses and we need to be comfortable in our own heads.
I realise that is a big statement.
How can we know if we are comfortable in our own heads?
If we are not, how do we get to know ourselves?
What is the point?
The point is: If you were taking a journey of 80+ years with another person you would want to know them. What are they good at? What makes them happy/sad/angry/frustrated/motivated? How do they deal with bad situations? How do they cope with pain and suffering? What are their habitual patterns? What is the best way to allow this person to live, work and love in an authentic and healthy way?
Now imagine this person you are going on the journey with is you.
Learning to be happy and content within yourself is the best gift you can bring to any relationship.
It allows you to know:
What you need and want.
To be kind to yourself and others when things just don't work out.
Know when a relationship is unhealthy and unsafe.
Know that you can be ok without this relationship if need be.
Realise you deserve love, respect, honesty, acceptance, kindness and joy.