I often see unhealthy foundations in a relationship, based on poor communication, unmet needs and two people in slightly different orbits. As humans we are programmed to take more notice of negatives, research tells us for every single negative interaction or connection we have, we need five positives to outweigh that negative.
Think about the last time you received feedback, it may have been glowing, singing your praising and telling you how amazing you'd been, right at the end it's dropped in that you could improve in one area. What does your mind zone in on? The perceived negative, you dismiss all the positive praise and accolades. Instead, you focus on the single thing you can have done better. The message you tell yourself is, that you are rubbish and must try harder. This is negativity bias. It is real and it affects relationships too.
Spotting negatives or looking for danger once kept us alive. This isn't the case now, and we can create some new neuropathways to help balance out the negative bias. We can do this by focusing on the positive interactions and connections and letting them sink in, allow them to stick and develop.
In relationships it is no different, we look for weaknesses, we judge situations and people. Instead of looking for the strengths and positives in our relationship and our partner. Switching the mindset to actively seek out strengths in your relationship will help you build and grow, you will start to notice more strengths and positives as you this front of mind.
It can be difficult to identify strengths but here are a few qualities seen in happy healthy couples, do you recognise any of these in your relationship?
Sense of humour
Stong intimate connection
Open to receiving love
Great at communicating
What is one of two things on the list to recognise? How can you build on the strength and make it even stronger? Nurturing and boosting those qualities when the relationship is good will help support you when you hit the tricky patches. It is much harder to cultivate them when you are in the danger zone.
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I know how challenging relationships can be and how exhausting it is when things don't feel right. It is emotionally draining and you can feel so alone. Don't suffer, if you need support make the first step, and start today, with a no-obligation chat. I'm sure you feel better once you say things out loud.
Don't forget to tune into the weekly Podcast Geordie Lass and Doc Sass for all your relationship hot topics and questions, on all major platforms.
Episode 39 is about the top 3 reasons boundaries fail check it out.