The missed opportunity in relationships


Relationships are the foundation of our long term happiness and we often struggle to be happy in them. Even if one of our relationships is dysfunctional we cannot be happy. This includes relationships between spouses, partners, friends, siblings, at work, or between parents and children.

Why do we struggle to have healthy relationships with depth, meaning and without conflict? We assume that relationships are all about what others can do for us, but they are also an opportunity to learn about ourselves and for personal growth, one that few realise or take advantage of. Learning about ourselves can help us grow as human beings to be happier and more fulfilled in our relationships. Without this learning our relationships remain superficial and do not nourish us, or descend into conflict and break up causing so much heartache.

Here are #4 things you could learn about yourself through your relationships and grow as a person, but for this understanding to truly impact your life you need to observe them in yourself.

#1 We have emotional needs we are not aware of

We all have many emotional needs we are not aware of. We want others to meet them. These include a need to feel listened to, understood, loved, made to feel important, and so on. We may not be aware we have these needs, but when they are not met we can feel hurt, blame others for hurting us and retaliate in some way. These needs are not right or wrong but understanding them can help us understand others better and respond with our intelligence.

To find out more explore the Emotional Needs module in the app.

#2 We think love is what others do for us

When people say ‘I love you’, often what they really mean is - I love how you make me feel. For many people love is a feeling of pleasure. It's not about you, but about what you do for me. I could even convince myself that I do actually love you, but our mind is good at deception. We don’t like admitting this to ourselves. It makes us look selfish and we don’t like that.

Love then becomes a barter - if you do something for me and make me feel good - I will love you and may do things for you. The moment you stop making me feel good I will stop loving you, withdraw, and look somewhere else for that ‘love’.

Understanding this clearly may help you change because you realise that love is a verb, it is what you do for the other person, for their benefit, and not about you. This could help you invest more in your relationships which in turn could transform your life.

To find out more explore the Love module in the app

#3 We are quick to judge, and want to change others

Our mind is constantly comparing what we see with what we know and we are not aware of this. When we encounter a person who thinks or acts differently to what we regard as normal our mind reacts automatically. We may be critical of them, or try to change them if we are a parent or in an intimate relationship. We can be certain others are wrong and we are right, not realising what is going on in the backroom of our own mind. This can create conflict and strain our relationships.

Understanding this can help us respond with intelligence, question our own certainties, perhaps accept most differences we find, and if we do need to communicate, do it with care.

To find out more explore the Relationship module in the app.

#4 Our fear of being hurt stops us from connecting deeply

Most people have been hurt before and don’t want to be hurt again. These fears operate in the background shaping our behaviour in relationships. They can stop us from opening our hearts and sharing what we really feel, for fear of being judged by others. As a result our relationships remain superficial and we can feel lonely despite being in a relationship.

This understanding could prompt us to overcome our fears and share what we really feel. This may prompt others to do the same and can deepen the connection we have with them.

To find out more explore the Communication and Fear and Anxiety modules in the app.

Download and explore the HappierMe app. There is a free trial.

Understand your mind. Live a happier life.

Life can be tough. The HappierMe app is your personal guide to help you feel better now, but also to take you deeper to understand your thoughts and feelings. It supports you to become the person you want to be, to be happier, manage your emotions and  succeed in the world. There are also coaches you can speak to through the app.

Copyright © 2024 HappierMe. All rights reserved

Copyright © 2024 HappierMe. All rights reserved