Relationships are a two-way street – both partners need to give and receive in order to have a well-balanced relationship. However, we are not perfect, and a lot of things have affected us in the past, which may cause problems in our relationships to come. The balance of a relationship depends on the personality balance of both partners. Most often, the line between individuality and interdependency gets crossed, so some people slip into a behavior that can be toxic to their relationship. They invest so much of themselves into maintaining intimacy and romance, that they forget who they are as individuals.
There can be various reasons behind a personality and relationship imbalance. However, can one’s efforts to fix their relationship be enough or not?
A balanced personality
photo credit: Jeremy Wong
“Be not angry that you cannot make others as you wish them to be since you cannot make yourself as you wish to be.” ― Thomas à Kempis
It all begins with how balanced your own personality is, as well as your partner’s. A personality can be defined as a deep-rooted and stable pattern of behavior that contains elements that are effective (i.e. emotions), volitional (i.e. will), cognitive (i.e. thoughts), and behavioral (i.e. inclinations). It can be separated into two dimensions that constantly interact with each other – character and temperament.
Temperament is determined by our genetic inheritance, and its elements are hard to change because it functions at a subconscious level. It is our inherited tendency of thinking, behaving, and feeling. On the other hand, character is something that gets acquired and can be changed. It depends on our experiences, actions, culture, social environment, and education, and it is subjected to constant environmental and mental influences. Our personality is the result of the interaction and coexistence of the character and temperament, and balanced personality traits are important for creating a healthy family.
The right beginning
photo credit: Pablo Heimplatz
“Your hand opens and closes, opens and closes. If it were always a fist or always stretched open, you would be paralyzed. Your deepest presence is in every small contracting and expanding, the two as beautifully balanced and coordinated as birds’ wings.” ― Jalaluddin Rumi
To search for someone who “completes” you are a total misguidance because having a successful relationship doesn’t mean that. You don’t have to agree with everything or love the same activities. You’re both different and those differences should be respected. Maintaining a strong sense of independence and individuality within the relationship is what makes it a “grown-up” relationship.
Things that can lead to an imbalanced relationship usually come from its beginnings, from the very first mistakes that people make, like hesitation of some first date questions. A healthy relationship should consist of mutual respect, trust and friendship, sharing, occasional sacrifices, and enough room for each of you to maintain your individuality.
Support each other
“He felt now that he was not simply close to her, but that he did not know where he ended and she began.” ― Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina
As we have acknowledged that being identical doesn’t mean balance, what you need to realize is that we both give and take in different ways and times. It’s okay to give a lot, but pay attention to what you’re receiving as well. Your partner may not be good at some things like remembering birthdays or choosing gifts, but do they show their love in other ways? It can be shown in many ways, like encouraging you to be an individual, making you laugh, standing up for you, forgiving you, etc. To be able to support each other, you need to be strong enough so your partner can lean on you when they need it the most.
For better or for worse
photo credit: Azrul Aziz
“And still, after all this time, the Sun has never said to the Earth, “You owe me.” Look what happens with love like that. It lights up the sky.” ― Rumi
Good and bad, light and dark, up and down – two concepts that create a balance, with great richness and colorfulness in between. Remaining together in good times and bad requires hard work on both sides, and realizing that things can’t go only in favor of one. Don’t be the only one trying because you should both care about the direction of your relationship. If you support your partner when needed, and they show a lack of interest, your relationship is out of balance. Remember that there’s only so much you can give. If your partner doesn’t accept their responsibilities, and you slip into the roles of both the rescuer and the rescued, you’ll just be wasting your time.
A relationship shouldn’t revolve around one person, but this is surprisingly more common than we’d like to admit. When a person clearly shows that they come first in a relationship, or becomes controlling and demanding, there will be an obvious imbalance.
Body&Mind Balance blogger
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