I want to highlight the key to success right off the bat. Your ability to be happy in a relationship directly correlates to your ability to be happy with yourself.
The moment you start to allow your happiness to depend on your relationship or your partner’s actions or moods, you’re putting yourself at a disadvantage and are doing yourself a disservice. Loving yourself and loving the life you life are the things that will have the biggest impact on your happiness in a relationship.
When I tell people this, it often catches them off guard. They’ll be talking about what they wish their partner did differently and how they’ve been trying to get their significant other to want to spend more time with them, but it really just boils down to the fact that if you are not happy with the life you’re creating for yourself, it’s going to be very hard to cultivate a happy relationship.
Of course the relationship requires maintenance and a conscious effort, but the very first thing to pay attention to is how much you actually love yourself and your life. Why?
Because you can love another only as much as you can love yourself.
To illustrate my point, let me tell you about a person that I recently worked with. She asked that I don’t use her real name, so I’m going to call her Ana. By the way, this is one of my favorite success stories!
So Ana lives in Arizona and she called me asking about how to be happy in a relationship again with her long term partner. She told me that she was investing everything she had into her relationship, even time she didn’t have to spend, and wondered why it wasn’t yielding the results she was looking for.
After working together, we realized that she was so busy focussing on her relationship, that she was actually completely neglecting herself. She had no time for self-care, exercise, or even spending time with her girlfriends. So, I gave her a game plan that surprised her quite a bit. I told her to back off of her relationship a bit, and instead, spend time reconnecting with herself. Then, in one month, I told her to ask herself if she felt happier in her relationship.
The month comes and goes, and she sends me an email thanking me for encouraging her to make the counterintuitive decision of focusing on herself, because she’s never been happier in her relationship. Now, she’s showing her boyfriend all the new things she’s been doing, and he says he’s never been more attracted to her! The moral of this success story is that you can only be as happy in a relationship as you are as an individual. Embrace this process and you can see the same results!