It may be true that we often seek in others that which we are not willing to give ourselves. This is a correctable mistake. It is not a good reason to be in a relationship. If we are only being with someone for what they can do for us, that is called dependency.
What we think we lack, we think we will find in someone else. The sense of self we assume we lack can never happen by osmosis. What we think we need from others can never rub off on us. Being with a love partner who has the qualities we lack does not necessarily enable us to acquire those desired qualities ourselves.
It is simply only your choice to give yourself what you think you lack. What a wonderful gift. You deserve it! You do this through the awareness self-discovery inspires.
Being with someone who is independent will not cure our own leaning toward dependency. You must do this on your own. And preferably before entering into a new relationship. You alone hold the key to the cure.
It is time for us to know that we lack nothing. Nothing, except perhaps the insight to know that we already have everything there is, including that which we seek from someone else. We have only yet to discover it within ourselves. This takes time and patience and understanding and lots of love for ourselves. And you have to want to!
You must never withhold discovery of self from yourself.
It is important to give yourself the gift you have been withholding from yourself before you attempt a serious love relationship. You may discover that once deeply involved with a love partner, with all of the many nuances of a relationship, you may never again find time to concentrate on giving yourself what you think you need if you are in the throes of always putting your best foot forward in the relationship.
When we first meet, we want to look our best; we instinctively do our best to sell ourselves. We put aside our bad habits and turn into someone who is focused solely on looking good. Many of us never intentionally shift to this mode to deceive, but do so in an effort to impress our new partner.
Others become a chameleon. They become who they think their new love partner wants them to be, changing frequently, always attempting to live up to someone else's expectations.
This is a losing game. No one can win it. How frustrating this must be, not only for you but for your love partner as well. How confusing it must be to be with someone when you never know how they are going to be the next time you are with them. This kind of unpredictability will get you nowhere. The relationship is doomed from the beginning. You are lying to yourself. It is certainly not putting your best foot forward. It is a major withhold which is dishonesty in action.
This is not being who you really are. It is not being honest with the one you're with, and most certainly not being honest with yourself. It is withholding that side of you that must always eventually be revealed if two people are to really know each other. How can someone get to know you if you never reveal your true self to them?
Another tendency is to only see the good in our new love partner in the beginning. I believe it is totally appropriate to look for the good in everyone; however, by contrast, it is a potentially unhealthy tendency to purposely overlook what we do not want to see.
We become carried away with the romance of it all. We hear bells and whistles and see shooting stars. We are moonstruck. Give it time and the negative seems to always surface. It is only a matter of time before the bubble bursts.
I choose to trust that my love partner can listen to the real me and know that what I reveal about myself is really who I am. I trust her to love me for who I am, not for who she thinks I should be.
Some may argue that there are certain things that you must never share with your love partner. Perhaps. That is a personal decision. However, if trust is to be present in your relationship, you must demonstrate your own personal integrity. For me, this means no withholds.
For purposes of this conversation, I am referring to letting your lover know who you really are. I do not mean revealing something you have done in your distant or not too distant past that is not relevant to your current situation. That is being irresponsible and may hurt your love partner or perhaps even destroy the trust that may be present now.
If you have things that you feel you must reveal to your love partner that may cast a permanent shadow over your relationship, you would be well advised to first seek the services of a professional therapist or spiritual leader before you make the final decision to do so.
If both love partners strive for a state of truly being who they are, without withholds, they will find that they can see both the negative and positive sides of each other early in the relationship. There is great value in this.
I believe it is possible to put your best foot forward and at the same time, very quickly allow your new love partner to see who you really are. It is risky.
We wonder, "If we let them see who we really are, will they go away?" The truth is, if we don't let them see who we really are they may go away anyway. All we see is a puff of smoke!
People love people who are real.
I would rather present myself for who I am. My love partner will either love me for who I am or she won't. I would rather make myself vulnerable, take the risk and know where I stand, than to withhold who I really am, only to have my love partner leave in six months because the me I withheld was not someone she was able to be with.
Make a mutual commitment to no withholds, another of the keys to success in a healthy love relationship.
Copyright © - Larry James. Adapted from the book, "How to Really Love the One You're With."
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