Deborah is a writer, healer, and teacher. She enjoys helping people work towards healthier lives.
Are You Being a Brat?
Being in relationship is hard. Whether you're married or dating, have children or don't, it isn't easy to be half of a couple. Life, work, family: they all conspire to complicate your perfect relationship and your peaceful life. Sometimes, you become your own worst enemy in your relationship. Being kind, speaking your truth and being happy are all choices that you have every day. Before you derail the entire relationship, decide how you want to show up, for yourself, for your partner and for the relationship.
Often, you create your own misery. You alone are responsible for your happiness, and when choose happy, then your relationship is healthier. When you act like a brat, you only make yourself and your partner miserable. You can take control of yourself and your life!
Don't Step On Me!
1. Practice Kindness
Be nice. That's really the long and short of being in a successful relationship with anybody. You can't underestimate the power of kindness, not only for yourself, but also for the people around you.
This doesn't mean you become a doormat and endure terrible treatment. Instead, it means creating an environment of kindness, not only for yourself but also for your partner and family. Kindness doesn't tolerate abuse or irrational behavior. Kindness means being honest, open and considerate.
Once you're in a relationship, it's easy to let your nice side slip away. You don't want to concede power or seem weak. You want to appear tough, in control, and strong. You want respect. And when your partner does something you don't like, it becomes even easier to get mean. Meanness undermines relationships and takes away your power.
It begins with snarky comments murmured under your breath, until you become overtly mean and sometimes even passive aggressive. You might buy the kinds of things he doesn't like, like Pepsi instead of Diet Coke or Oreos instead of Nutter Butters—you get the idea. Instead of doing kind or helpful things that make your partner happy, you deliberately do things that won't. These small, unkind acts might seem insignificant, but they create disharmony. As you cease practicing kindness, it erodes your partners trust and confidence in the relationship. They begin pulling back as you become unkind.
You may start to make mean comments directly to his face and to your friends and family, telling everyone what a jerk he is. You begin to believe that you could do better and that he doesn't deserve you. You talk him down rather than build him up.
Stop being mean. If you don't love this man, then be honest, let him go, and get on with your life. If you do care, then be kind. In any relationship it is important to first notice how you truly feel about the relationship. Once you acknowledge your truth, you have a responsibility to speak up. This honors your heart as well as the other person. Speak kindly, but speak your truth. Banish the ice queen!
2. Let Him Grow Up
Treat your partner like an adult. Even if he sometimes acts childish, he is not a child, and he is definitely not your child. You don't need to boss him around. He is an adult who can make choices and decisions. If he asks for your advice, great. Go ahead and give it. But don't treat him like he's stupid or doesn't know any better.
And for heaven's sake, don't wipe his face, dab his collar, or lick your hand and adjust his hair. Give him the same degree of respect you'd give any other adult in your life. Whether you actually have children or not—you aren't your partner's mother.
Your partner doesn't want another mother. While he might appreciate you doing all the chores, relationships are a two way street. When you begin acting more motherly and less like a partner, he begins acting childish and taking less responsibility.
You manage yourself. He manages himself. Together, you make decisions and choices that affect you. You are both responsible, reasonable adults who can figure out how to dress yourselves, care for your home and family and get to work on time. You aren't his mom. Let her keep that job. You've got enough on your plate.
3. Speak With Clarity and Conviction
Whining, blaming, nagging, and complaining take away your power. When you constantly harp on your partner, you lose credibility and you give away your own power. If you sound harsh and judgmental, he won't listen to a word you say.
It's fine to make requests and suggestions, and if something bothers you, definitely speak up— just don't keep bringing it up. Make sure he heard you and let it go. You don't have to keep repeating yourself over and over again, because that is truly tiresome. Besides that, people need time to process information. When you say something, let the other person think. If nothing has been resolved in a timely manner, then bring it up again. Say it, then wait.
You don't like his socks on the floor? Fine. Mention it to him. But if he keeps leaving them there, don't take it personally. It's probably not a big deal to him. If you want something to change, then change it. Don't wait for someone else, and don't try to nag anyone into doing what you want. If it needs to be done, then do it. If you feel it is unfair to pick up his socks and throw them in with the laundry, then walk around them. Let them lay. Let him big a pig. You can keep your part clean and neat and ignore him.
The bottom line is, if there is behavior that is unacceptable for you, then speak your truth. Don't whine and cry. Speak clearly, with conviction. Let him know how you feel. Then drop it. If things don't change, you have choices for how you will proceed. Nagging your partner will only make you both annoyed. Maintain your power by choosing what to say and then how to act.
Sex Keeps You Healthy and Happy
4. Start Having Fun
With the demands of work, children, school, home, dinner, life might become dull. You might prefer to sink into the couch at the end of the day, zoning out in front of the television.
Or, perhaps, you spend all weekend on your phone or computer, comparing your life to social media and feeling resentful. Stop scrolling, stand up and get some fresh air. It's time to bring fun back into the equation.
Whether you enjoy walks after dinner or playing cards with friends, or taking your kids to the park, take time to have fun with each other. There is noting worse than dreading your return home after a long day or week at work.
Home is your sanctuary. Make it a fun place to spend time. The thing is, the location doesn't matter. You create the environment in your home, so choose what energy you'd like to feel. Maybe instead of turning on the T.V. first thing, you could put some music on and allow yourself space to dance. Get yourself in a better mood.
And for the love of Pete, please stop acting frigid. Sex is fun. And, it feels good. On top of that, there are many health benefits to having sex regularly, which you can read about in the article:
Remember when you used to enjoy snuggling up together? Surprise your partner and initiate intimacy. You'll both have fun and it will help bridge the gap.
Sometimes women like to control sex because they want to control men. Many women believe the best way to control a man is to not give him sex when he wants it, or to withhold sex until they get what they want. Sex is not a weapon of manipulation. Unfortunately, lots of people use it that way. It is a fun activity that not only feels good but can also bring you closer together. Sex is good for a healthy relationship. It's good for your physical and mental health, and it will bring the two of you closer together. Try having sex every night for a week? Do you think you could do it? Instead of ignoring, try instigating. See what happens when you are close and connected and having fun every single night for a week.
If you don't want to have sexual relations with your partner because they don't satisfy you, then let them know. Tell them how to please you. Your partner can't fix something that they don't know is broken.
Whether it's in the bedroom, or around the table with a deck of cards, relationships thrive on fun. Think back to the activities that bring a smile to your face and try to incorporate more of them into your relationship. Make time for having fun.
Take Care of Yourself
5. Be Your Best Self
Don't give up on you. There is only one you, and you deserve to take good care of yourself. Sure, it's not easy when you work full-time and have children to tend, a house to clean, and a job to do. You can't love others until you learn to love yourself.
We're all busy, but it's still important to show up as the best version of yourself, day after day. Stop making excuses for why you can't work out, shower, eat right, or brush your teeth. Just do it. Make yourself a priority.
Laying around all day might feel good for a couple of hours, but soon you'll get stiff and laziness won't be fun anymore. Eating poorly, getting heavy, and being unkempt simply aren't healthy. Taking care of yourself is not only important for you, but it also makes a huge impact on your relationship. If you care about yourself, you are more able to care about your partner. If you feel good, then you'll have more energy and will want to have more fun.
Taking care of your physical and mental health changes your outlook on life. It's not for someone else, but for yourself that you make your own health and well-being a priority.
Put Your Energy Into Self-Care and Self-Love
- Exercise early before anyone else gets out of bed. Take some time for you!
- While you enjoy your breakfast or coffee in the morning, find some time to quiet your mind and meditate or pray.
- Clean yourself up: Make appointments for your hair, your nails, a massage, or whatever makes you feel good.
- If you can't afford these things, then find a friend and work out a trade. Do what you can to take care of yourself and stop letting yourself go. It is vital that you take time to love yourself more.
Show Up For Yourself
It's important to show up to your own life: Be nice, act like an adult, stop whining and complaining all the time, have fun, and take care of yourself. With these five easy steps, you can show up to your life and show up for your partner. You will feel better and your relationship will improve almost immediately.
More importantly, when you practice these five tip:, kindness, accountability, communication, intimacy and self-care, then you can live your own best life.
Don't do this for anyone else. Do it for you.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2018 Deborah Demander