Do you expect your spouse to make you happy?
In this article, I am talking about the romantic expectation of relying on your spouse to make you happy and why this is wrong.
“It’s my spouse’s job to make me happy.”
Your happiness is your responsibility. No one can make you happy – or make you feel anything for that matter. According to developmental psychologists, a hallmark of adulthood is taking responsibility for our lives. Our finances, our decisions, and our emotions.
Dr Karin Anderson Abrell, psychologist
If you think your spouse’s main responsibility is to make you happy, think again.
Your spouse is with you out of love and desire to share his/her life with you. Your responsibility as a couple is to support each other on your journey to become the best of yourself and make your lives better in the process. The secret to a healthy and happy marriage is to give.
It’s not your spouse’s job to make you happy. It’s yours.
Fulfilment – another term for happiness
Here are some of the questions you need to find answers to:
Why am I not happy?
What aspects of my life am I unhappy about?
What prevents me from being happy?
Am I happy with my job, with my previous life or career choices?
More often than not happiness is another term for fulfilment.
Discovering what you like and makes you happy and fulfilled is a life-discovering journey. Some know very early on.
For others, it’s about uncovering past emotional traumas which burden their present and darken their future. Theirs is a painful journey, but a necessary step towards change and improvement. With professional support and guidance, it’s possible to heal your emotional wounds. When people heal their emotional wounds, they usually feel liberated and free. It’s like a heavy shadow has been lifted from their minds and hearts.
Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate.
Happiness – not a mindset
You cannot wake up one morning and decide you will be happy throughout the rest of your life. Your happiness is not based on your mindset – that is the result. A happy and strong mind is a result of being confident and aware of your strengths and places to grow.
When you’re not happy with yourself, your self-confidence is low and that deters you from opening up to exciting opportunities.
When you feel unworthy of the best things that life has to offer you, you make bad choices in both your personal and professional lives.
Happiness is not a mindset. You cannot will your mind into being happy. The mind is powerful but when you instruct your mind to ignore or erase negative thoughts when they appear instead of addressing them – it does more harm than good.
Your spouse cannot make you feel good about yourself no matter how much he or she tries if you don’t believe it yourself.
Happiness is an inside job
Your spouse may love you, but you must first love yourself to accept his/her love.
Your spouse may support you in achieving your goals, but you must first set goals for yourself.
Your spouse may show empathy towards you, but you must first be aware of your own feelings and emotions.
Your spouse may treat you with respect, but you must first respect yourself through self-care, setting healthy boundaries and building good habits.
Your spouse may be considerate of you, but you must also be aware of your own behaviours and attitudes and how they influence your life and the lives of the people around you.
Your spouse may give you all that, but he/she cannot give you happiness because happiness is an inside job.
Happiness will be fleeting if you constantly search for it in places that can be taken away. It’s an inside job.
Nikki Rowe, author of Once A Girl, Now A Woman
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