Are you disempowering your partner? How we can encourage without imposing...
“I need to start going to the gym,” says your partner….up next, your move.
Through the course of our relationships we all hear our significant other talk about goals and things they want to achieve. Some goals are talked about on a continuous basis, sometimes leaving the other partner with the desire to get involved.
“Did you go to the gym today?”
“When are you going to go?”
…and sometimes the delivery even drifts to a tone of….
“Let me guess, you didn’t go to the gym?”
NOW DON'T GET ME WRONG, hearing your partner talk about their unmet goals day in and day out can have you feeling the need to interject, but how you do so is key.
Lets. Break. It. Down.
Your partner may be experiencing some challenging thoughts that can have them feeling stuck and unmotivated... in this case, we'll continue with the aforementioned example of the gym. Feelings of unworthiness, fear, and insecurities could be attached to reason why they can’t meet that goal.
Seeing your partner in that space can bring out uncomfortable feelings for you. It’s not fun seeing your partner in a funk. You know they will be happier if they just start going to the gym already!!
But the last thing your partner needs is to feel that they’re letting you down, as well.
(read that line again)
So, take a step back, a deep breath in and out and say…
“It is so fricken tough to get to the gym, but I know you’re going to figure it out”
This will create a shift in your partner feeling that their feelings are understood and valid, yet empowered in hearing that you believe and trust in their ability to FIGURE THEIR SHIT OUT.
You formed a space for your partner to feel a sense of autonomy.
If they’re missing motivation. YOU can’t give that to them.
If they’re feeling insecure. YOU can’t give that to them.
But what you can do is be there to provide a safe space for them to figure it out without feeling the added pressure or further judgement.
Sitting in that space is not always comfortable, but by forming a different relationship with your partners complaints, it may bring you relief in knowing that you are not in charge of figuring it out for them. After all, feeling your support and trust is all that they may be asking of you.
<3 Dr. Claudia Caprio