“What if I didn’t say the right thing?”
“What if I’m not good enough?”
“What if you don’t love me anymore?”
“What if we’re not meant to be together?”
“What if I’ve become boring?”
“What if I wear the wrong outfit?”
Do you and your partner constantly ask each other different what-ifs? Do you both tend to overthink the state of your relationship and how happy you both are?
It can be draining trying to have these thoughts constantly because it can also take a toll on your relationship and overall well being.
If this is how things usually go in your relationship, then this article is for you.
1) Always have patience
♪ But all my friends, they don’t know what it’s like. They don’t understand why I can’t sleep through the night. ♪
An insecure attachment style explains why you always need reassurance and certainty when you’re in a relationship. Sometimes you even get aggressive, unpredictable, and irrational because of your insecurity. And your significant other shares the same sentiment as you.
That’s why you both need to be patient with each other. You have to learn to be the bigger person when the other is fixating on something that seems uncertain.
Remember Ted and Robin from “How I Met Your Mother”? Ted was always insecure that Robin would leave him and Robin would always try understand his thought process.
Try to put yourself in their shoes and see where they’re coming from. Your partner should do the same for you. And this is one step towards a more loving and healthy relationship.
2) Ground yourself in the moment
When you find yourself questioning everything about your relationship even when things are good, ground yourself in the moment. When you’re overthinking, on the verge of a breakdown, take a few deep breaths and try grounding yourself in the moment.
A famous grounding technique is the 54321 technique. The first step is to name 5 things that you can see around you. This can be your reflection in the mirror or the bird that just flew by the window. Anything at all from your point of view.
After that, you name 4 things that you can feel. It can be your skin, the texture of your clothes, or how hard your chair is.
The third step is to identify 3 things that you can hear around you. It may be your dog barking in the background or the hum of the refrigerator.
Next, you should list 2 things you can smell at the moment. It could be your perfume or the faint smell of your cooking from earlier today.
Lastly, you can describe 1 thing you can taste right now. It could be your toothpaste or the aftertaste of your lunch. If you can’t taste anything, you can list your favorite taste. Like you can name the taste of your favorite snack.
This specific grounding technique can help ease your anxiety. It helps with regulating your emotions so you don’t lash out at your partner or say something you don’t mean.
Another grounding technique is to look back at your relationship and think of your favorite moments with them. Remember how it felt like, how warm their embrace was, or how you made them smile.
This simple technique can save you from a lot of worries.
3) Refrain from jumping to conclusions
Why is my partner knee-deep in their DM’s all the time? Who’s calling them in the middle of the afternoon? Are they cheating on me?
Do these questions sound familiar to you?
If that’s the case, you’re most likely prone to jumping to conclusions and assuming the worst. It’s part of your defense mechanism. You expect for the worst so when it happens, you’ve prepared mentally. And by doing so, you believe that it would hurt less.
But this is your significant other we’re talking about. You know it in your heart that they would never do you wrong. Because faith in each other is the foundation of a healthy relationship.
For all we know, it’s just a delivery guy, informing your partner that their package will arrive today. Or maybe it’s just someone from HR, calling about a job offer.
You have to stop thinking of the worst possible outcome. It’s not doing you any good and it makes you experience an event that hasn’t even happened. You shouldn’t let these things get the best of you.
You have to approach things with positivity or even just neutrality. Because more often than not, your nightmare expectation is far far far from the truth.
4) Stop analyzing their body language too much
Did they shy away when you were just about to hold hand? Was that an indication that they don’t want to hold hands with you?
More often than not the only answer to these questions would be that it was just a coincidence. Maybe their palm was sweaty, or maybe they just moved it unknowingly.
And before you bring up that actions speak louder than words, there’s a chance that you might be reading into their actions too much.
You’re usually known as someone who is attentive to details. And that’s usually a good thing except when it’s starting to take a toll on your relationship with your significant other.
Take everything that you see with a grain of salt and try focusing your attention on other things.
If you ever feel that they’re more distant than usual try checking if they have a lot on their plate. Maybe they have a big presentation for their job. Or they’re waiting for results from a doctor’s checkup.
All you have to do is ask them instead of imagining things that will put a strain in your relationship.
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5) Talk your feelings out
Communication is key to a healthy relationship. Especially when you’re both overthinkers.
Remember, your partner can’t read what’s on your mind. You have to make an effort to explain what you’re feeling so that your partner can understand you.
Openly communicating helps both of you know where to meet halfway. It allows you to understand how to compromise in your specific situation.
When you’re anxious about your relationship or when you feel like you’re not good enough, sit down with your significant other and hash it out. Tell them how you feel and why you feel that way. Explain to them what may have triggered this way of thinking.
Opening up to your partner may be hard, especially for sensitive topics. But communicating with them and telling them all your worries will help your partner get to know you better.
6) Learn to listen openly
Listening openly comes side by side with talking your feelings out.
So when your partner says that they feel like you don’t love them anymore, what you do is that you repeat keywords that they say. This shows them that you’re actively listening to what they’re saying. And that you’re being considerate about their feelings.
Listening to your partner and hearing them out can make such a huge difference in your relationship.
It would even help you if the same dilemma arises again someday. Because by listening to how they feel, you’ve learned their triggers and the way they want to tackle the problem.
But you should still hear them out because maybe they want to approach it differently this time.
7) Stop micromanaging how things should be
Overthinkers can be over planners.
This behavior stems from expecting a lot of bad scenarios. You prepare for the smallest possibility that things will go south.
Planning isn’t always a negative thing, this could be handy on road trips but not exactly helpful when you just want a romantic date night.
Remember when you kept requesting a different song at the restaurant? You ended up focusing too much on setting the mood that you ruined it.
Trust in the flow. By not micromanaging things, your date night might surprise you. The uncertainty may feel troubling at first, but what’s the worst that could happen? Your waiter bringing the wrong bottle of wine?
By letting your apprehensions go, maybe you’ll actually have fun during the date. And you’ll even notice how your partner dressed up for this occasion or how they got a fresh haircut.
Living in the moment with your partner and it’s such a nice way to ease your mind.
8) Learn to take accountability for mistakes
When you’re both overthinkers, apologies are important.
Because sometimes remembering that your partner never apologized for something they did wrong can keep you up at night. And this could lead to a lot more overthinking.
And that’s why explicitly saying sorry is important. Aside from apologizing, you should also make up for your mistakes and learn from them. The best apology is making a conscious effort to not repeat the same mistakes again.
Doing so also shows your partner that you’re open to growth and improvement with them.
Take accountability for your mistakes and trust that your partner will do the same.
9) Build your trust with each other
Trust your partner. Sounds cliche but most couples tend to take this for granted.
Overthinking does that to you. You tend to forget that your partner is one of the people you trust most.
If you’re having a problem getting intimate with your significant other because you’re afraid they might hurt you in the end, remember that they’re not your ex. You have a clean slate and they haven’t done anything to hurt you on purpose.
A good exercise to do as a couple is neotantra yoga. It focuses on your sexuality and helps you open up more with your partner. In the TV series, The Bold Type, Jane and Ryan engage in this to become closer with each other.
Tantra means “to weave” in Sanskrit. So it helps with connecting more with your partner in different ways outside of just talking things out.
But outside of neotantra yoga, you can learn to trust your partner more by doing different activities together. Maybe you can do the good old trust fall exercise.
Even just doing errands with each other can actually help you build your trust. Because you’re welcoming them into a personal aspect of your life and that takes a lot of trust.
10) Make sure to have personal space
Your partner may be your everything but remember that we all need some “me-time”.
May it be writing poetry, taking a walk downtown, taking care of plants, or simply blasting your favorite album on, we all need those moments.
When you’re in a relationship, sometimes you tend to focus on your partner too much. And this is normal because you’re trying to build a future together. But you have to remind yourself to take a step back every so often and take care of yourself.
Making room for personal space helps you and your partner grow as individuals. Because couples usually tend to become codependent with each other.
Codependency is when one person is the caretaker and the other takes advantage of the caretaker. And we need to avoid it because it’s destructive.
It breeds a cycle of constantly having to please each other’s needs. And it’s unhealthy for couples to revolve their lives around this.
And that’s why you need personal space. You learn to take care of yourself on your own and you learn to trust your partner that they’ll do the same for their own growth.
Self-care is vital because you learn to work on yourself holistically and independently. When you make an effort to recharge your energy, you’ll also have more room for love in your relationship.
Can a gifted advisor help you too?
If you want specific advice on your situation, it can be very helpful to speak to someone with special intuition.
I know this from personal experience…
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