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Balance is such an important part of life in general. Whether it’s between work and pleasure or family life and personal time, Male surfer riding wavebalance should always be something in our minds. Granted, we don’t always achieve balance. Not at all! However, balance should be the goal. And this applies to relationships as well.  In fact, successful relationships rely on a balance between dependence and independence. Too much of either one or the other and the relationship loses equilibrium and flounders. So, how can you find balance in your relationships? Consider three important keys.

Key #1: Establishing a Firm Foundation of Trust

Any secure relationship will, at its very root, have established a firm foundation of trust. Whole articles and books have been written about trust and relationships. However, we can boil this down to a few key points. For example:

  • Trust means that you know you can rely on your partner
  • Both of you keep your word
  • The experiences that you have had in the relationship affirm that sense of trust
  • Neither of you needs to “jump through hoops” or prove anything to one another

How is trust built and maintained? By all of the interactions between you and your partner that exist every day. These include both the little moments that you share, as well as bigger events. For instance, going on a trip together, working on a project, or other similar activities. All of those moments are bricks for the foundation of a secure and balanced relationship.

Key #2: Feeling Connected to Your Partner

If you think about the word “dependence,” there’s a lot of baggage associated with it. Often, we think of dependency in relation to insecure relationships. Such as, when one partner relies way too much on the other partner. Yet, there needs to be a way to describe feeling linked and joined with your partner in a healthy and secure way. Perhaps “connected” is a better word to describe this feeling. Both of you feel connected equally in the relationship. Instead of one partner being overly dependent on the other, you are equals. You know that your partnership is steady and secure. If it wasn’t, there would be some level of dependency, which would cause an imbalance. Over time, this imbalance could cause frustration, resentment, and ultimately can lead to the dissolution of your relationship.

Key #3: Maintaining a Degree of Independence

Of course, you may feel so connected to your partner that you want to do everything with them. However, it’s also helpful to have a degree of independence. For example, each of you may have your own hobbies, interests, and passions. A healthy relationship will allow for each partner to pursue those interests while, at the same time, keeping the relationship in mind. Let’s say that you like to make jewelry while your partner is a passionate gardener. That’s great! You each have things that you like to do and compliment your relationship. When things get out of balance though, then there is a problem. If your partner starts gardening every minute of the day and does not apply any energy to maintaining your relationship, then the relationship becomes less secure. In fact, pe ople in insecure relationships will often use hobbies as an escape from their relationship problems. And that’s something you don’t want to happen. — As you can see, balance is critical to any successful relationship. At the root, though, for any relationship to succeed is trust. After that, it’s important to have a firm connection to one another, as well as do things that also affirm your own identity. If you and your partner feel that your relationship is out of balance, consider which of the keys mentioned above is missing. However, if you, despite that self-analysis, are still having problems with developing a secure and well-balanced relationship, take time to seek couples counseling for additional support. I would be delighted to help you.