We recently interviewed an inspiring couple (check out their interview!) and that got us thinking again about a concept we’ve experienced in our relationship history.
Why don’t our partners make us happy?
The answer to that last question is a big, fat, they’re not supposed to–it’s not their responsibility.
(Wait-what? Our partners aren’t supposed to make us happy?)
The short answer, no.
That job rest on our own shoulders.
If the weight of our satisfaction, joy and dreams rest on the shoulders of our partners, that will crush them. Just the same if they put their emotional fulfillment on ours. (No, thanks!)
Emotional Dependence is when we rely on external sources (including our partners)for emotional satisfaction. In a healthy relationship (and in our opinions – a healthy individual), they practice the opposite of that, Emotional Responsibility.
Emotional Responsibility means looking to internal sources for emotional satisfaction and fulfillment.
This notion of, “you complete me” is bullshit. Our partners are not responsible for us and we are not responsible for our partners. We’re complete people on our own, just as our partners are, and a relationship is two whole people, joining forces, to add to each other’s lives.
(Like two, super hot, super heroes!)
Heroes take accountability of our own fulfillment on to its rightful place of resting (our own shoulders), and we free our partner and ourselves from that cycle of dissatisfaction.
What does this cycle look like?
“I can’t go to that interview because I have to be here with you.”
“I need you to take care of this, so I can be happy.”
“I know that if I’m out late working hard, you’ll be lonely.”
“If I join basketball and improve my health, you’ll feel left behind.”
“If you would just go back to how things were, this would work better for me.”
“Do you have to travel for work? I’m bored when you’re gone.”
“You’re the only thing that makes me feel better.”
“Even though I want to spend my time doing what I love, I feel responsible to spend my time helping you.”
Whew. We don’t know about you, but we used to see ourselves in those statements. (And it sucks to admit it!) These cycles don’t serve us in any way. It makes our partners responsible for our needs and desires, and stunts our reach towards our own fulfillment.
There’s a simple shift to change these statements and thought patterns. We can stop placing our emotional needs and satisfaction on our partners, and return it back to ourselves. (Where it should be!)
This shift is simply:
Once you recognize your desires, dreams, and needs–determine how YOU can achieve them.
In other words, eliminate what OTHERS need to do to fulfill it. Discover how YOU have the ability, knowledge and responsibility to achieve them. (‘Cause you do!)
The world needs you, your light, your unique abilities, and when we shoulder that on to our partners, our light not only disappears, but we also dim the light of our partner.
Remember, a successful and thriving relationship is two complete people joining together to support, succeed, and grow. This can only happen when we look internally to satisfy our own needs, desires, dreams, and happiness. When we bring our complete (super hero) selves to the table and our partners are free to do the same.
It’s like a win-win because when we are fulfilling ourselves, there’s no need for either of us to shoulder the responsibility of our partner’s fulfillment.
An extra bonus, without the weight of shouldering the others’ satisfaction, the job of fulfilling ourselves is that much easier.
At least, it’s supposed to be, right?
Tell us, what do you guys think? We love hearing from you! And keep your eyes peeled for this inspiring couple coming to the blog soon.