The importance of self-esteem in a couples relationship
This is how self-esteem influences the quality of our relationships.
When we talk about self-esteem, it is often characterized as something that only has to do with the relationship we have with ourselves, with our identity.
In part, it's not surprising that this is the case: cultivating good self-esteem seems to be based on introspection, on how we manage our feelings and how we reflect on what that "I" means. But in reality, it's more complex than that, and includes our personal relationships as well. In fact, our way of relating to others is as much a part of the causes of having one or another type of self-esteem as it is of the consequences of the latter.
In this article we will look at how our self-esteem influences us in the world of relationships, and what we can do to avoid problems in this regard..
What exactly is self-esteem?
Let's start with the most important thing: what does the word "self-esteem" mean? It consists of the set of mental representations that make up our concept of "I", and of emotions and feelings that we associate with our identity. In other words, in a nutshell, we could say that Self-esteem is what we believe about ourselves and how we feel about it..
Of course, self-esteem is not simply a description of how we are; it also includes moral notions about what we should be, and how far we fall short of that ideal "I" to which we should strive. People with a very low self-esteem feel that they are far away from that model to become, and those with a well-balanced self-esteem feel that they are close to it, although they still have the motivation to continue improving.
Moreover, self-esteem is not static, but evolves over time, sometimes unintentionally.Sometimes unintentionally, and sometimes because of what we deliberately do to improve our self-esteem.
- You may be interested in, "What is the goal of couples therapy?"
Self-esteem in couple relationships.
How we see and value ourselves has a lot to do with how we initiate and manage relationships. It should not be forgotten that even though a courtship or marriage is based on a strong bond and commitment, individuality is not lost. And in this sense, there is another relationship to take into account in a couple relationship: the one we have with ourselves.
These are some of the aspects in which they can interact giving rise to problems:
- Some couple relationships are initiated to fill a void caused by one's own insecurities.
- A couple relationship can turn into a dependency relationship that prevents us from feeling good about who we are beyond the role of serving the other person.
- A couple relationship can result in the need to conform to gender roles in a very limiting way.
- It can be assumed that a couple's relationship is just one area of life to which we devote all our free time.
- Many situations of abuse begin when the abuser becomes aware of the victim's fear of abandonment.
On the other hand, It is one thing to suffer from partner problems caused by low self-esteem or vice versa, and another thing to know how to deal with them correctly so that they stop causing emotional Pain and communication problems. to stop causing emotional pain and communication problems. Fortunately, there are several ways to address these issues, and the most effective ones have to do with going to psychotherapy.
What to do to improve self-esteem from couple relationships?
As we have seen, improving self-esteem does not only involve reflecting on who we are; it also includes managing our emotions and the way we interact with others. To achieve this in the context of a couple's relationship, keep these tips in mind:
1. Maintain exciting projects beyond the couple's relationship.
You must be able to maintain a life project that includes stimulating and relevant aspects for you beyond the relationship. For example, develop an artistic skill, practice sports, learn languages to get in touch with other cultures... Otherwise, all your self-esteem will depend on experiences that depend in part on the same person: your partner.
2. Make your contributions to the relationship count
A couple relationship can wear down one's self-esteem if emphasis is constantly placed on the sacrifices and efforts that one of the people has made to make that relationship viable and maintain it, and the sacrifices that the other person has made in that sense are made invisible.
3. Do not let your motivation be the fear of rejection.
It is important to detect cases in which what most motivates us to relate to our partner is the fear that he/she will leave us. The source of motivation to be with that person should be centered on the positive experiences that he/she brings us, not the negative experiences that he/she could bring us.
4. Allow your partner to support you in your self-improvement process.
The person you love can help you in your progress towards the goals you have set for yourself and that are meaningful to you. In this way, you will be taking advantage of the potential in your love relationship as a support that helps you demonstrate what you are capable of.
5. Don't let the other person call you names that bother you.
It is very common in relationships to use nicknames used as affectionate nicknames. However, sometimes the lack of assertiveness means that when these nicknames cause discomfort, nothing is said.
6. Don't let him make you feel bad about your accomplishments.
There are toxic couple dynamics, often based on jealousy, in which the other person's achievements are seen as a threat or a destabilizing factor in the relationship. These situations often result in one person emotionally blackmailing the other, making them believe that they are to blame for the relationship going wrong, even though in reality it is this controlling mentality that is the problem.
(Updated at Mar 28 / 2023)