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Home / Articles / Columnists / Monarch for Love /  Have You Lost Your Sense of Self in Your Relationship?
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Tuesday, September 12,2023

Have You Lost Your Sense of Self in Your Relationship?

By Michelle Hays  
Do you ever feel like you’ve lost your “sense of self” in your relationship? We all (hopefully) want to please our partners. But what happens when we are so busy “pleasing” our partners that we start neglecting our needs? I went above and beyond to please my first husband. The more I focused on his happiness, the more he also focused on his happiness. (It wasn’t his fault, just human nature.) Back then, I didn’t understand that my sense of self silently suffered by wanting to please my husband all the time and not honoring my own needs and wants. Can you relate? You are not alone.

As children, we learn how to receive love and what we must do to get our needs met. Then through our perceptions, we create our idea of love, and those beliefs root themselves in our subconscious minds. However, those beliefs can be significantly limiting to our relationships.

When I was a kid, I learned that when I helped my mom with the housework, she was more loving. I knew that my dad could spend more time with me when I pulled the weeds in the garden. As an adult, I believed that “doing things” for the people I love was the way to get them to love me and spend more time with me. For most of my life, I was terrified that if I weren’t “doing things,” for my partner or family, they wouldn’t love me. I am not saying it was true. I am saying that is what I believed. There is a big difference.

What did you learn about love as a kid? Do you have some limiting beliefs as well? I’ve discovered that many people believe that it is only by pleasing other people that they become worthy of love. Please know that these limiting beliefs don’t define you. If you recognize them, you can change them.

I knew from experience that dangerous feelings of resentment begin to boil beneath the surface when we lose ourselves in our relationships. I learned how to develop a healthy sense of self. It’s never too late to regain your sense of self. I did it and you can also.

So how do you begin to regain your sense of self? Start small. Ask yourself: Do I say yes to make other people happy? What makes me feel good about myself? What helps me relax? Spend a little time alone. Get reacquainted with yourself. Stop stifling your wants and needs to fulfill every need of your partner and family. It’s not selfish. Your happiness matters! It is the key to unleashing more love and a happier life!


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