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5 Things Independent Women Should Keep In Mind Before Starting A Relationship

5 Things Independent Women Should Keep In Mind Before Starting A Relationship

Independent women are used to making fulfilling their individual potential as their first priority, but they need to know that certain sacrifices and compromises need to be made in a relationship.

1. You don’t lose individuality, when your partner and you become “we”

Every independent woman is disgusted when couples become “we”, and there is no “I” anymore. “We like the film. We hate that new restaurant. We, we, we…” And all the independent women ask themselves, why has individuality disappeared and what happened to having your own opinion?However, there is nothing wrong with becoming “we”, and it is often an indicator of having a relationship with an actual future. Also, after a few years of a relationship, it’s normal that you are “we”, as you will have experienced a lot of things together.

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When you are an independent woman, becoming “we” is an improvement of a healthy relationship, because you’ll be aware of your needs and opinions, and at the same time share some thoughts with your loved one. Women who cannot imagine being alone or single tend to adopt all the habits and opinions of their partner, which results only in having an unfulfilled relationship, as you lose yourself in it. When you realize that your relationship has improved, don’t freak out, just go with the flow and enjoy sharing experiences, as your independence won’t let you forget your habits. Moreover, it will help you understand your partner’s habits and needs better.

2. You will not put your partner in first place, but he will become one of your priorities

When in a relationship, most women start neglecting their friends, family and, most importantly, themselves, as they put their partner first. An independent woman won’t let her relationship become an obstacle to having a life, but will have to learn that it is a huge part of their life. Being in a relationship doesn’t mean that you have to stop hitting the clubs with your friends, so, stop looking at it like an obligation, or even worse, a waste of time. When you get in a relationship, you need to invest in it, especially emotionally.

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As time goes by and you get attached to your partner, he will become one of your priorities, and you’ll learn when it is appropriate that he comes first, and when he needs to be second on the priority list. Keep in mind that he surely puts you on the top of his list too, and if you really love him, he deserves to be a consideration when certain decisions are made.

3. You don’t like compromise, but you’ll actually enjoy doing things your partner likes

As an independent woman, you certainly don’t like making compromises in a relationship, as you may think that your boyfriend is playing a minor role in the story of your life. Imagine that someone said this about you – you would feel unimportant, like you were insignificant to your partner. This might come as a shock to you, but when you are in an excellent relationship, it becomes the main story and your partner and you are the main characters. It won’t happen immediately, but as your relationship develops, you’ll find out that the relationship keeps you going in life and that your partner is the biggest support you have.

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Independent women have a huge advantage, because when making compromises they’ll actually understand their partner and his habits. This way you’ll avoid fights about what someone has done for the other in a relationship. Moreover, you won’t get bored by the things he likes, as you’ll make compromises reasonably and enjoy exploring your partner’s individuality. Getting to fully know one person is a beautiful experience, which you will understand and know to appreciate. Also, your partner will feel respected, as all independent women like to embrace their partner’s hobbies, habits and opinions, while also preserving their own.

4. You have high expectations and you won’t settle for less

Having high expectations is a good thing, and you know that there is a man who will meet these expectations. When you have certain expectations, such as wanting your man to be a gentleman and respectful of you, it means that you respect yourself and know what you deserve. Women who have expectations, know what they want from a man and respect themselves, will also know how to respect their partner and reach his expectations.

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Try not to set the bar too high for your partner, because there is no need to invest deeply in small details or petty matters. The only expectations you should have are regarding the way he behaves around you, and how he treats you. I am sure, that you as an independent woman know how you would like to be treated. Therefore, don’t settle for less.

5. You know how to spend a quality time with your partner

You don’t need anyone to keep you company and amuse you in order to have fun. When single, you explore many things and work on improving some of your skills. Moreover, you know how to have fun, and you don’t just wander aimlessly around your apartment and waste your time. So, when you start a relationship, you’ll know how to spend some quality time with your partner. Moreover, you’ll actually want to spend that time with him, and you’ll both know how to enjoy each other’s company. You know that the best time you can have with someone is a fun conversation over some nice wine, just enjoying the moment.

Being independent is a good thing, just be careful not to push your partner away by being cold and unavailable. Your characteristics will work for you – they’ll make your relationship healthy, fulfilling and fun. However, you’ll need to learn that, sometimes you just need to go with the flow and, most importantly, learn to let somebody else play a major role in your life.

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Katarina Milovanovic

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Last Updated on March 30, 2020

What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

Have you ever walked into a room and felt like your nerves simply couldn’t handle it? Your heart beats fast, you start to sweat, and you feel like all eyes are on you (even if they’re really not). This is just one of the many ways that being self-conscious can rear its ugly head.

You may not even realize you’re self-conscious, and you may be wondering, “What does self-conscious mean?” That’s a good place to start.

This article will define self-consciousness, show how practically everyone has faced it at one point or another, and give you tips to avoid it.

What Does Self-Conscious Mean?

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, self-conscious is defined as “conscious of one’s own acts or states as belonging to or originating in oneself.”[1]

Not so bad, right? There’s another definition, though — one that speaks more to what you’re going through: “feeling uncomfortably conscious of oneself as an object of the observation of others.” For those of us who regularly deal with extreme self-consciousness, that second definition sounds about right.

There are many different ways self-consciousness can spring up. You may feel self-conscious around people you know, like your family members or closest friends. You may feel self-conscious at work, even though you spend hours every week around your co-workers. Or you may feel self-conscious when out in public and surrounded by strangers. However, you probably don’t feel self-conscious when you’re home alone.

How to Stop Being Too Self-Conscious

When you’re in the throes of self-consciousness, it’s nearly impossible to remember how to stop feeling that way. That’s why it’s so important to prepare ahead of time, when you’re feeling ready to tackle the problem instead of succumbing to it.

Here are a variety of ways to feel better about yourself and stop thinking about how others see you.

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1. Ask Yourself, “So What?”

One way to banish negative, self-conscious thoughts is to do just that: banish them.

The next time you walk into a room and feel your face getting red, think to yourself, “So what?” How much does it really matter if people don’t like how you look or act? What’s the worst that could happen?

Most of the time, you’ll find that you don’t have a good answer to this question. Then, you can immediately start assigning such thoughts less importance. With self-awareness, you can acknowledge that your negative thoughts are present and realize that you don’t agree with them.[2] They’re just thoughts, after all.

2. Be Honest

A lie that self-consciousness might tell is that there’s one way to act or feel. Honestly, though, everyone else is just figuring life out as well. There isn’t a preferred way to show up to an event, gathering, or public place. What you can do is be honest with your feelings and thoughts.[3]

If you feel offended by something someone says, you don’t have to smile to be polite or laugh to fit in with the crowd. Instead, you can politely say why you disagree or excuse yourself and find a group of people who you relate to better. If you’re nervous, don’t overcompensate by trying to look relaxed and casual — it’ll be obvious you’re putting on a front. Instead, nothing is more endearing than saying, “I’m a little nervous!” to a room of people who probably feel the exact same way.

On the same note, if you don’t understand why someone wants you to do something, question it. You can do this at work, at home, or even with people you don’t know well. Nobody should force you to do something you don’t want to do.

Also, even if you’re willing to do what’s asked of you, there’s nothing wrong with asking for more clarification. People will realize that you’re not a person to be bossed around.

3. Understand Why You’re Struggling at Work

Being self-conscious at work can get in the way of your daily responsibilities, your relationships with co-workers, and even your career as a whole. If you’re facing some sort of conflict but you’re too nervous to speak up, you may be at the whim of what happens to you instead of taking some control.

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If you’re usually confident at work, you may be wondering where this new self-consciousness is coming from. It’s possible that you’re dealing with burnout.[4] Common signs are anxiety, fatigue and distraction, all of which can leave you feeling under-confident.

4. Succeed at Something

When you create success in your life, it’s easier to feel confident[5] and less self-conscious. If you feel self-conscious at work, finish the project that’s been looming over your head. If you feel self-conscious in the gym, complete an advanced workout class.

Exposing yourself to what you’re scared of and then succeeding at it in some way (even just by finishing it) can do wonders for your self-esteem. The more confidence you build, the more likely you are to have more success in the future, which will create a cycle of confidence-building.

5. Treat All of You — Not Just Your Self-Consciousness

Trying to solve your self-consciousness alone may not treat the root of the problem. Instead, take a well-rounded approach to lower your self-consciousness and build confidence in areas where you may struggle.

Even professional counselors are embracing this holistic type of treatment[6] because they feel that the health of the mind and body are inextricably linked. This approach combines physical, spiritual, and psychological components. Common activities and treatments include meditation, yoga, massage, and healthy changes to diet and exercise.

If much of this is new to you, it will pay to give it a try. You never know how it will impact you.

If you’re feeling self-conscious about how your body looks, a massage that makes you feel great could boost your confidence. If you try a new workout, you could have something exciting to talk about the next time you’re in a group setting.

Putting yourself in a new situation and learning that you can get through it with grace can give you the confidence to get through all sorts of events and nerve-wracking moments.

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6. Make the Changes That Are Within Your Control

Let’s say you walk into a room and you’re self-conscious about how you look. However, you may have put a lot of time and effort into your outfit. Even though it may stand out, this is how you have chosen to express yourself.

You have to work on your internal confidence, not your external appearance. There’s nothing to change other than your outlook.

On the other hand, maybe there’s something that you don’t like about yourself that you can change. For example, maybe you hate how a birthmark on your face looks or have varicose veins that you think are unsightly. If you can do something about these things, do it! There’s nothing wrong with changing your appearance (or skills, education, etc.) if it’s going to make you more confident.

You don’t have to accept your current situation for acceptance’s sake. There’s no award for putting up with something you hate. Confidence is also required to make changes that are scary, even if they’re for the better. Plus, it may be an easier fix than you thought. For example, treating varicose veins doesn’t have to involve surgery — sometimes simple compression stockings will take care of the problem.[7]

7. Realize That Everyone Has Awkward Moments

Everyone has said something awkward to someone else and lived to tell the tale. We’ve all forgotten somebody’s name or said, “You too!” when the concession stand girl says to enjoy our movie. Not only are these things uber-common, but they’re not nearly as embarrassing as you feel they are.

Think about how you react when someone else does something awkward. Do you think, “Wow, that person’s such a loser!” or do you think, “What a relief, I’m not the only one who does that.” Chances are good that’s the same reaction others have to you when you stumble.

Remember, self-consciousness is a state of mind that you have control over. You don’t have to feel this way. Do what you need to in order to build your confidence, put your self-consciousness in perspective, and start exercising your “I feel awesome about myself” muscle. It’ll get easier with time.

When Is Being Self-Conscious a Good Thing?

Self-consciousness can sometimes be a good thing[8], but you have to take the awkwardness and nerves out of it.

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In this case, “self-aware” is a much better term. Knowing how you come off to people is an excellent trait; you’ll be able to read a room and understand how what you do and say affects others. These are fantastic skills for people work and personal relationships.

Self-awareness helps you dress appropriately for the occasion, tells you that you’re talking too loud or not loud enough, and guides a conversation so you don’t offend or bore anyone.

It’s not about being someone you’re not — that can actually have adverse effects, just like self-consciousness. Instead, it’s about turning up certain aspects of yourself to perform well in the situation.

Final Thoughts

When you’re self-conscious, you’re constantly battling with yourself in an effort to control how other people view you. You try to change yourself to suit what you think other people want to see.

The truth, though, is that you can’t actually control how other people view you — and you may not even be correct about how they view you in the first place.

Being confident doesn’t happen overnight. Instead, it happens in small steps as you slowly build your confidence and say “no” to your self-consciousness. It also requires accepting that you’re going to feel self-conscious sometimes, and that’s okay.

Sometimes worrying that there is a problem can be more stressful than the problem itself. Feeling bad for feeling self-conscious can be more troublesome than simply feeling it and getting on with the day.

Forgive yourself for being human and make the small changes that will lead to better confidence in the future.

More Tips for Improving Your Self-Esteem

Featured photo credit: Cata via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Merriam-Webster: Self-conscious
[2] Bustle: 7 Tips On How To Stop Feeling Self-Conscious
[3] Marc and Angel: 10 Things to Remember When You Feel Unsure of Yourself
[4] Bostitch: How to Protect Small Businesses From Burnout
[5] Psychology Today: Self-conscious? Get Over It
[6] Wake Forest University: Embracing Holistic Medicine
[7] Center for Vein Restoration: What Causes Venous Ulcers, and How Are They Treated?
[8] Scientific American: The Pros and Cons of Being Self-Aware

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