This is a wonderful open chat between Shawn and Anne Stevenson about identifying their individual needs in their relationship. It's so important that couples have open, honest communication to understand what your partner's needs are. The more you understand your partner, the closer you become and the more you can create a deeper, more loving relationship.
There’s a wonderful quote from Carl Jung that says, “The meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances: if there is any reaction, both are transformed.”
Our deepest relationships transform us. And which direction that chemical reaction goes can make all of the difference in the world. You can end up with a beautiful reaction that breathes life into everyone who’s around it, or a not-so-good reaction that can smother everyone in the room. The thing is, we don’t have to sit idly by and just hope that things will mix well together. We can actually uncover which things work great together, and put them into action for ourselves!
There will be nothing that impacts your life more than the quality of your most intimate relationship. Becoming a great “relationship chemist” will bring you more health, happiness, and success than you can even imagine.
The 6 human needs
The first 4 needs are the needs of personality, the last 2 are the needs of the spirit and this is where fulfilment comes.
- Uncertainty / Variety / Surprises you want
- Significance - We all need to feel important
- Connection and love - most people settle for connection because love is too scary. We need it.
- Growth - you must grow. The reason we grow is we have something of value to give.
- Contribute beyond ourselves - the secret to living is giving. It's not about me it's about we.
We all have these six needs and we need to ask ourselves how we rank them in order. Which one is the big thing that drives you?
Our needs change in different stages of our life.
It's not a given that our partners will automatically know what our top need is. It's important to have an open chat about it and identify how you can better grow your relationship through this awareness.
We've all experienced "You should just know what to do to make me happy."
Be curious like a kid in heart to heart conversation with your partner.
How do you approach an open conversation with your partner without the ego?
A lot of people simply aren't willing. They don't like the feeling which plays in them not liking the person.
To grow your relationship requires actions like taking a seminar together, to create building blocks for your relationship. There are lots of great courses, books, podcasts, seminars... i.e. Tony Robbins, John Gray, Marissa Peer, Christie Marie Sheldon...
Relationships are a blessing for growth. If we see the learnings in our relationship and grow together with our partner, we will only strengthen that partnership even stronger.
We aren't taught relationships. We need to learn from each experience so we can grow from it and don't continually keep playing out the same patterns.
Whether we have poor or good models of relationships around us, our growth comes from our relationships. We need to learn to create our own models of relationships that serve us for the highest good of ourselves and those around us.
Are you aware of what your partner needs in order to feel loved or fulfilled?
You have to be honest with yourself. You cannot be honest with your partner if you cannot be honest with yourself. It's that simple.
The more supported and loved your partner feels they more they are able to lift you up.
It's never about compromising. That's poisonous in a relationship. It's about understanding where the other person is at working that awareness to lift each other up.
We often have no model of a perfect relationship but when we meet some and fall in love we expect it to be perfect. The fairytale romance as all childhood stories teach us. The perfect relationship starts with an awareness and understanding of who you are first. It requires a willingness and openness to work, learn and grow with your partner.
What would be the perfect relationship for you? What character traits and values are you attracted to?
The 5 keys to an amazing relationship
1. help them to fulfill their #1 driving force (highest need).
2. Never stop dating in your relationship
Continue to create special experiences, lots of heartfelt compliments, always acknowledge them, do new things and learn new things together. Create and block out one on one time with each other - listen to and follow inspirational stuff you're both interested in, go to the movies, concerts, special dinners out, little holidays together... anything that creates quality time together.
3. Personal Growth
You have to work on yourself. This is mandatory.
If there is no enemy within there is no enemy outside of yourself. Happiness is an inside job.
Make the time to figure out how you can be better when you're with your partner. This is a great muscle to develop.
When you work on yourself it goes hand in hand with honesty. You get to see a clear picture on where your relationship stands.
When you're working on yourself and being really honest with yourself, whatever happens externally will be good, will be the best for both parties. Find that inner knowing and let it guide you.
The main point of any relationship is to grow.
If you go down the path of growth and your partner isn't on the same page it's your opportunity to be the example and really bring it. Show what that love looks like. Allow someone else to do the talking for you - email them a podcast or a Youtube clip and have a chat about it. Go to an inspirational event together.
It's important to acknowledge the other person. We feed on that as humans.
If you're going to show up and be your best self you have to be healthy, especially if you have kids. You need to have the energy for life.
4. Practice the two most important words in a relationship in 'I'm sorry.'
Our big suffering is when we want somebody to do what we want them to do versus them being their own sovereign individual.
It's not about who's right but what's right.
We all hold onto 'stuff' but we act like everything is fine, but it's not. This can build up into toxic energy and resentment if not expressed.
You need to have clear air in your relationship so you can share your growth and awareness with your partner without projecting onto them. It's taking full responsibility for our own complexity to our emotions and how we respond to different triggered events. Always bring it back to the learns for yourself and not blame your partner, friends, family... it not about the other person.
What 2 or 3 triggered events have happened recently that you've gained awareness and learnings from that you can share with your partner?
These can also lead to communication with your partner that needs to be said (rather than keeping it bottled up to explode later in another unrelated event).
Do you know the root causes of why you react to certain little things?
When we're in conflict we naturally go to our amygdala, the primitive part of our brain where we are more concerned about self and self-preservation. It's automatic. Remember to look at the bigger picture - are the for me or against me?
Often our partners can blame us for their lack of being able to communicate how they feel.
Just by saying sorry you create a space to have a conversation.
Have an intention for fluid flowing energy in the household. We have the choice to have a conversation when we need to. Know that you are worthy of the highest quality of love and that our relationships are our greatest gifts to experience this.
Asume best intentions first before the voice in our head gets carried away. Personal growth is your tool to more enriched relationships.
5. Turn irritations into admirations
Be comfortable to seeing what is, as it is.
Our ego and mind can trick us to not want to see the truth. See people as they are. Don't try and change people or have expectations of them changing. Accept them as they are.
Remember to see the lighter side of things with humour, joy and compassion.
When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change - Wayne Dyer
How easy it is to forget to be so grateful for having another pair of hands to leave the toothpaste lid off. Always remember to be so grateful for the simple things in your life.
Our human nature thrives on relationships. These relationships are the gateway for us to be the best versions of ourselves.