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Are we complete and do we love our partners as we love ourselves? We usually define our partners as our missing half, as if they were the assembly part to fill our void.

However, it is difficult to create and maintain a mutually beneficial and harmonious relationship when we feel incomplete and we can only define ourselves through our partners. This feeling can lead us to believe that our partner is the fundamental part of our existence, it also leads us to not see ourselves as autonomous and capable beings. As if we are a worn out battery that could only recharged by our partner’s potential and energy instead of being self sufficient. By adopting this view of our relationships, they gradually wear out as conflicts and disagreements begin to plague us. To correct this, we need to connect with our significant other, not to recharge us or complete us, but to generate a reality greater than the sum of both parts.

When we lose sight of ourselves as autonomous lucid beings and when we lack a personal goal or ambitions, we are filled with confusion and our relationships suffer.  We overpower our partners or we feel overwhelmed by them. We start having a communication breakdown and our harmony and happiness begin to disappear, and our innate essence begins to lose its luster. When this happens, the best way to change our relationships is to begin to change ourselves! Personal change doesn’t imply change in our partners; it implies change in the relationship. In this instance, we need to observe our thoughts and the energy they create. By seeing anyone (including ourselves) in a honest and positive light, it is possible to keep developing the relationship with our partner and with our inner selves.

We can recognize a positive thought because they make us feel good, nurture us, and gives us a spring in our step. They benefit us and those around us by generating realities where all the participants win. When we’re able to think this way we’re also able to flow naturally. On the other hand, negative act against our ideal state: hate, anger, fear, and resentment… we can’t sustain these thoughts without suffering the consequences. They block our energy flow; they spoil our environment and our potential.

In most cases, our thinking is formed according to the past experiences of our lives. If we don’t have any experience on what is good for us, it will be increasingly difficult for us to discern between what’s good for us and what’s poisonous, between the achievement of our own desires and the masks of ego and society. Our wisdom goes beyond our personal experience because we have an internal mechanism designed to help us grow and be happier than what we’re used to. Unfortunately our thoughts and actions are normally limited to our experience. When this experience has conditioned us to negativity, we feel trapped.

Personal leadership in the development of ourselves allows us to experience relationships without losing ourselves in our partners. To know ourselves and to be ourselves. Therefore being interdependent instead of co-dependent with our partner. To collaborate in the shared goals in the relationship are achieved through a journey of our personal self discovery. Our nature helps us to be in harmony and to discover our essence and purpose.  There are excellent personal development programs that use life experiences to create and enrich authentic relationships. When we dedicate ourselves to completing that goal; we critically ponder our experience, we are able to obtain conclusions through our self-reflection, and we learn new ways of thinking and behaving.

To help us create positive thoughts that will improve our relationships I recommend incorporating the following considerations into our lives:

1. Distinction: You should notice the type of thoughts you have. You should not identify yourself with them, just calmly observe them at a distance. Pay attention to what you’ve thought and what these thoughts entail.

2. Decision: Decide what to do with these thought and the energy they generate. Choose if you should replace or keep them. Thoughts are your own mental constructs and you can create as many as you’d like and in any way you’d like.

3. Direction: Direct your thoughts toward the path you’ve envisioned. Create thoughts that generate a state of well being for you and your environment. Focus on what brings positive energy to you and your surroundings.

4. Program: Examine your actions and the thoughts that drive them, if they don’t take you to the results you desire, get rid of them and use the new mental programs you’ve developed. Try to be always aware of choosing the thoughts that most benefit you.

Thus you’ll have your transformation, and you’ll make all the old and frustrating behaviors disappear, you’ll achieve a new perspective regarding yourself and your partner. This is the method to obtain fluid, harmonious, emphatic, and long lasting relationships.

by Valeria Giacone

Valeria is an Experiential Coach and Argentine based member of the Breakthrough Center. Breakthrough Center delivers Psychotherapy and Coaching services to Individuals, Families and Groups. We support clients in creating strong personal foundations to experience a lifetime of positive change and growth.

– Edited by Gui Mansilla

Gui is a Coach, Psychotherapist and Director of Breakthrough Center in Toronto.             Breakthrough Center delivers Psychotherapy and Coaching services to Individuals, Families and Groups. We support clients in creating strong personal foundations to experience a lifetime of positive change and growth.

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 Translated by Edgar Valderrama Medina 

Edgar is the content manager for Breakthrough Center and Breakthrough Broadcast 

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2 Responses to Love: Interdependent vs Codependent

  1. imconfident says:

    Yes, co-dependency is a serious issue that can damage relationships, as I well know. It almost destroyed my marriage and my life. It wasn’t until I attended a co-dependency workshop that I realized it was my low esteem and negative thinking that kept me from feeling good about myself. Now that am actively working on building my esteem and changing my negative thinking to positive thinking, my entire life has changed.

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