3 Mistakes commonly made in a relationship.

Love is great, better than great actually. We all have a desire to experience this amazing feeling. However, even though we can’t escape heartbreak, we can learn how to better navigate relationships by truly understanding ourselves. Mistakes are inevitable, and truth be told, we learn (mostly) through our mistakes. But I want to highlight common mistakes that are often made at one point or another in our relationships.

1. Believing you are ready for one.

Remember when your parents try to tell you that guy or gal isn’t a good fit, or too grown for you? What usually happens, we never listen right….parents end up being right every time (trust their experience 😉).

I work in trauma therapy and I see people moving forward in new relationships without dealing with past trauma, such as pain and abuse, from past relationships, or even grief. Entering new relationships with past trauma is unfair to the new significant other, and also sets the relationship up for failure. (Stay tuned for my next post on this.)
When dealing with trauma, we are not always in the right place to be in a relationship. Whether it be emotionally, working hard to build your career or education,etc. Be honest with yourself before leading someone else on. If you are not stable enough, meaning you have baggage or personal situations that will get in the way of the relationship, choose YOU first!

2. Not discussing expectations.

Oooh, this is the BIG one. Have you ever broken up with a guy or girl because you were not on the same page-6 months after dating? This happens so much! We look at physical and sexual attributes of the people we date, without having true conversations about what we are looking for (long term, short term goals, relocation). These are very important conversations and often lead to the demise of a relationship.

4. Wanting to fix someone.

I have been guilty of this😑! I read somewhere a long time ago that men date women for who they are and women date men for who they have the potential to be. When you shop for a car, do you look for a fixer upper, with the potential to be great, or one that’s already in great condition? You can’t go into a relationship wanting to fix someone; you’re often left disappointed and waste years on someone to be what they showed you years earlier they were not.

Like I stated earlier, mistakes happen and that’s how we grow. But take time to learn yourself, deal with your past, and make sure you are whole before taking on new relationships.

When was your last tune up?

When was the last time you got your oil changed; its due every three months right? What about your dental appointment, every six months right? When was the last time your marriage had a tune up? We get our oil changed quarterly, teeth, bi-annually, but when was the last time you checked in with your spouse? Maybe you feel that because you still cook, clean, take care of his kids, or (fellas) work hard, bring flowers every Wednesday, buy her everything she needs. But is that enough? Maybe he’s tired of the same sex positions, maybe she’s tired of “just because” roses every third Wednesday. News flash: 🌹 “just because it’s Wednesday,” played out 4 years ago 🌹 lol.

When was the last time you asked your significant other, are you happy? Why do we just assume they are happy because we offer what we “feel” makes them happy. Did the same thing that made you happy 6 years ago, still makes your day-today? Life changes, we grow, priorities change. 6 years ago, I didn’t care about dishes because we didn’t have kids…..well now I do and if you did them from time to time, it would be amazing (for example 😜). We often assume we know our partners are happy because we may not want to face the truth that they may not be. That is the hard part, right, to actually hear of unhappiness in your household.

Below are three questions that should be asked,every few months,or bi annually at the least…..kinda like that dental appointment we never seem to miss.

1. Are you happy?

I told you all before, I love my scaling questions, as they measure for progress, when working with clients. So possibly offering it in a scaling style. For example, On a scale of 0-10, with 0 being the worst and 10 being the best, how happy are you with the way our marriage/relationship is? Numbers are great, versus saying “good,” or “I’m happy.” I’m a gal that like details, so pick a number please! Ha ha

2. What areas need improvement?

This is a great area to explore, as we often feel that when someone is not as happy as we are, or maybe even happier, first understand that we often see things differently-hence the need for this conversation.

3. What do you need from me?

Please pay attention to the response you get from this- this is a very powerful question. Sometimes a partner may not be happy in a marriage because of their own inability to manage time, unresolved personal issues, etc. They may very well just need you to keep doing what you are doing, while they put more effort into xyz. However, if he/she says “I need you to….” then work on ways to do that for the overall healthiness of your marriage.

Longevity does not equal success (I need to coin this phrase). Don’t assume what you don’t know because you fail to ask. If you don’t change your oil, it will run out and your head gasket will blow. Don’t let your marriage run without routine maintenance-or it will blow too.