Mandy Kloppers

Confident behaviour in relationships

What constitutes confident behaviour in relationships? We’d all like to come across as supremely confident and self assured when in a relationship with someone but when we really like someone, our confidence can go to pieces.

There are certain things you should and shouldn’t do to boost your confidence levels as well as encourage respectful behaviour from your spouse/boyfriend/girlfriend.

How to display confident behaviour in relationships

Avoid clingy or needy behaviour

Constantly seeking reassurance can be very off-putting. Some people aren’t particularly good at verbal affirmations such as “I love you” but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they don’t care. As long as they keep wanting to see you, relax and enjoy the relationship. Stop worrying about the status of the relationship. When we ask questions such as “Where is this relationship going?” we place unnecessary pressure on our partner. Of course, if you have been together for more than two years, it’s more appropriate to begin asking, especially if you feel your partner has commitment issues. Asking too early on though is a huge passion killer. Jealousy is another behaviour that smacks of insecurity. Be more self assured, you can’t control your partner – get in the habit of trusting them. Innocent until proven guilty is the best policy.

Seek out your own interests and friends

It’s unhealthy to want to spend every spare moment together. Ensure that you have your own set of friends (and don’t ignore them when you get into a relationship) and that you have your own interests/hobbies. It makes the relationship more interesting. Maintain your independence. A relationship that is stifling usually has less chance of succeeding in the longterm.

Watch your expectations

Nobody can be everything to you. When I was younger, I expected my first long term boyfriend to be my friend, my lover, my parent, my best friend etc. There is no way that someone can meet all of your needs so don’t expect this. This is why having friends is a great way to spread your needs out over a few people.

Stand up for yourself

You teach people how to treat you whether you react or not. If you let someone get away with disrespectful or abusive behaviour, you are basically giving them a ‘green light’ to continue. They will be making a mental note that they can get away with it. Be assertive and let them know if they do something that upsets you or goes against your values.

Keep your sense of identity

We all change to a certain degree in long term relationships but be careful not to lose your sense of identity. Never lose sight of who you were before you entered into the relationship – what your dreams and goals were. The more you lose your identity, the less respect your partner will have for you and the less respect you will have for yourself. Maintain your own opinions and don’t allow yourself to become a submissive person with no opinions of your own. Very dangerous!

Have your own money

Have enough money to allow you to feel independent. Never allow your partner to completely control the finances. Having your own savings symbolises freedom should you ever need it. Hopefully you won’t but psychologically it will help you to feel you still have independence and will minimise any controllong and/or abusive behaviour.

Relationships can be heaven or hell – the potential for both is there. Make sure you look after yourself and maintain your sense of self and you will increase your chances of a happy and healthy union.

Mandy X