Dealing with Insecurity
Human beings are like sponges…from the moment we are born, we take in information, and most of this information affects us on some level. Everything that we see, experience, and decide molds our self-concept. We have all been hurt, disappointed, or rejected at some point in our lives. Insecurity in a relationship is a major concern for those struggling in a relationship.
Unfortunately, it seems that many of these events which hurt us the most can also be the most difficult to recover from. Many of my clients tell me that they can easily remember more critical things that were said to them vs. compliments or praise. If these things were said by important people (i.e. parents, family members, etc.) they can be even more damaging.
I work with many of my clients to address and deal with insecurities and low self-esteem. It is important to not only confront these insecurities but to try to get an idea of where they came from in the first place. This type of work can sometimes bring up a great deal of emotion and frustration…but it is an important piece of recognizing and understanding all of the influences on our sense of self.
This deep-seated insecurity catches many of us off guard…again…and again. As much as we try to control our negative thoughts, they often control us.
Those lingering thoughts from the past lead to unwarranted behaviors that can damage our relationships.
We refuse to let those lingering thoughts go for one reason or another. Or, we use the wrong approach to get rid of them altogether.
A study found that relationship insecurity leads to more negative relationship outcomes in the form of decreased relationship commitment, satisfaction, and love as well as increased perceived quality of relationship alternatives, conflict, and jealousy
Tips for dealing with insecurity in a relationship
Many of our relationship problems start with our thinking. Our relationship is a reflection of how we think. Just think how much healthier your relationship could be if you could conquer negative thinking. Yes, you can overcome negative thinking. Here are five strategies to get you well on your way to positive thinking, and hence are tips for dealing with insecurity.
1. Change your thinking.
Negative thinking is a great threat to dreams, opportunities, success, joy, health, progress, and fulfilling relationships. Yet, men and women are plagued with this deep-seated insecurity daily and are not sure what to do about it. Negative thinking prevents you from progressive living every day. Even worse, “negative thinking” can lead to health problems, such as stress.
You can change your thinking by engaging in mental practices that focus on positive things. It’s what you focus on that you’re impacted with. How to deal with insecurity and jealousy in a relationship? Focus on the positive side and be realistic, know what’s really the reason for insecurity.
2. Leave the past behind.
Another disrupter for couples is not realizing that focusing on the past prevents them from moving forward. It is perfectly fine to recognize positive points from the past and reflect on them. But, to just dwell on negative points not only limits your thinking and frame of reference, but it is also a time-waster.
Use your past to help you consider the consequences of your decisions today and to not make the same costly mistakes in the future.
3. Embrace each other’s differences in thinking.
It is not always about being right or persuading your partner to see your point of view. Sometimes it is about being open-minded and seeing things from another perspective regarding issues. Knowing each other’s differences helps a great way in dealing with insecurity issues if you have any.
There is nothing wrong with thinking differently as long as you both can discuss an issue in a healthy manner. In essence, open-mindedness is a skill that can lead to a more productive relationship. The goal is for you and your partner to talk about any issue openly and respectfully.
Having resentment is toxic to you and your partner. Unforgiveness holds an individual hostage to bad behavior and torments everyone who embraces it. Releasing your partner is a liberating process for you because it creates internal peace and it is a reminder to your partner that his/her wrongs will be forgotten in order to move forward. Forgive to move forward.
5. Have faith in yourself.
Be willing to commit to personal change one day at a time. Don’t give up. Change takes time and persistence. Surround yourself with positive people. Use the communication process to share your commitment to change with your partner for support. Having fain in yourself is the best how to overcome emotional insecurity. You must know that you value and trust your self-worth.
Couples are much more successful when they believe and encourage each other to share thoughts through a fair and respectful communication process that focuses on the truth of the matter in a calm manner. It absolutely makes a difference as well as leads to trust and honesty in the relationship.
Many of us find ourselves in situations that reinforce our insecurities. Sometimes this is unavoidable, but often it is not. As an example, it is difficult to avoid an intimidating boss at work unless you are willing to quit your job. However, you can try to set healthy boundaries with your colleagues, friends or family members. Many of my clients admit to feeling obligated to spend time with people or in situations that reinforce their insecurities…but you DO have a choice!
Try to take some time to think about setting healthy boundaries…these can limit your exposure to people/places which threaten your sense of self-worth. I work with my clients to help them reframe negative perceptions about themselves by replacing them with new, positive experiences. A great deal of our sadness comes from old hurts and events…and working through these in therapy can help you sort through these issues and move forward.