Happy young couple

What makes relationships work?

You have the answer.

It starts with your well-being.

I can hear the buts…

But my partner is this…

But my partner does that…

But he/she/they need to…

It is easy to focus on needing things or people to be a certain way to be happy.

It is tangible. If my husband were more attentive, I would be happier. If my wife were less critical, I would be happier. If we had more sex, I would be happier. If there was more emotional intimacy, I would be happier. If only we talked more. If only we talked less.

The list goes on and on.

But the answer is not in the tangibles. It is in the intangible.

This can sound like I am saying people should be resigned to feeling unsatisfied in their relationships and not expect change.

I’m not saying that.

I’m saying, “Your happiness lies within! Start there.”

When we don’t start there, we run a fool’s errand trying to find happiness outside ourselves. Relationships are a prime target for this.

It is easy to think you would be happier if your partner were different. I was guilty of this. I, innocently, fell into the misunderstanding of feeling I needed Angus to be different so I could be happier, and there were some compelling reasons why this felt true.

Currently, I am very grateful for the relationship I have. And massive changes have occurred, but not before I experienced a shift.

My relationship changed when my happiness and well-being increased.

I tried for years to make it work the other way around. My mission was to get my husband to change, so I could be happy.

I had it backward! I didn’t realize I needed to experience a shift in myself first and that the changes in my relationship would be a by-product of me showing up differently.

When I got happier and felt safer within myself. This allowed me to feel the love within. Then I could show up more lovingly in my relationship.

Our nature is love. Not the love of romance, an infinite love.

It is our natural state.

But I was not living in my natural state. I was living in my conditioned state.

This conditioned state was not the expanded state of love. Instead, it was contracted with qualities like pressure, urgency, anxiety, tension, discouragement, or pessimism. These feelings would range from imperceptibly mild to painfully extreme, but I could only be in the conditioning of my mind or experiencing the truth of my heart.

Allowing myself to experience the truth of my heart more fully was the best thing I did for myself and my relationship.

This required me to feel the love in my heart, listen to its wisdom, and act on it.

There are plenty of ways to go about this. You will know what works for you by following the feeling of pleasure and letting it guide you so you can chart the course for your happiness.

Acting on the wisdom of your heart might feel uncomfortable because it goes against your habitual conditioning. This conditioning consists of learned behaviors to keep you safe, but they are not designed to make relationships thrive.

Therefore, it is worth the temporary discomfort of acting against habitual patterns of behavior to experience greater internal freedom and happiness.

Your relationship will benefit from this.

Remember, your well-being comes first. Relationship happiness follows.

This post was originally published in Rohini’s Blog at https://www.therewilders.org/.