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Last Updated on January 14, 2019

What You Really Need to Feel Secure in a Relationship

What You Really Need to Feel Secure in a Relationship

People who are insecure in their relationships do irrational things all the time. Texting their partner a million times in a row. Or calling to check in constantly. Maybe they try to keep track of their partner’s whereabouts, even checking their email or Facebook messages when possible. Maybe you’ve experienced this, either as the insecure one, or the person dating the insecure one. Or maybe you’ve even been both, in different relationships.

Even if these aren’t the signs of a the healthiest relationships, these behaviors are common to make people feel more secure in a relationship. After getting a response back from the partner over text, Facebook, or an actual call, they feel better.

The problem is that people end up making a habit of these actions, repeat them over and over again to stay secure. These little actions, as innocuous as they are, can damage a relationship. Some might feel annoyed by their partners always checking up on them. Some might feel like there is a deep trust issue that hasn’t been solved.

The Origin of Insecurity

Imagine a world where everyone holds a certain amount of fuel in their hands. At the same time, a fire is lit in their heart and that fire needs constant fueling to survive.

Every single person will find their compatible person, someone who can find the fuel with which they can keep the other’s fire on.

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    Sometimes it’s a smooth exchange of fuel. Individuals find others like family members or friends to keep their fires lit and going.

      But many times, people refuse to give them fuel.

        These people could be their parents who failed to give them enough attention when they were still a child. Childhood development depends so much on a child’s ability to form a strong relationship with a caregiver.[1] It’s crucial for babies and children to survive by attaching to a caretaker. If children grow up without being paid enough attention by their caretaker, they can easily grow up to feel insecure and have trouble trusting other people. Feeling abandoned as a child, they might even doubt their own worthiness and a strong fear of being unwanted.

        Or it could be people who made them feel rejected in previous relationships. Being rejected or betrayed by a friend or romantic partner makes people feel unwanted. They feel hurt and even doubt their own self-worth. They can find it difficult to open up to others and trust anyone else. And when they find trusting other people hard, they will inevitably feel insecure in a relationship.

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        As time goes on, their fire gets smaller as they lack fuel.

          When, finally, someone suitable is there to give them the fuel, they seek a lot from this partner – sometimes, too much.

            In order to ensure a constant supply of fuel, they do everything they can: this is when they might start checking their partner’s texts or messages, or call too often. They can’t trust their partner because of what happened in their past.

            But when they demand so much fuel, it drains the other person.

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              And so all those things that someone does to try to feel more secure can annoy or hurt the other person. For example, they may fight a lot over small things because of moments of insecurity. Both will be exhausted: one demanding a lot of fuel, and the other trying to always supply the great demand.

              As you see, insecurity doesn’t come from the current relationship or partner. It comes, instead, from the inner fear of being abandoned, not being loved, and not being valued. This feeling is built up along the way.

              Where to Look for Security

              The fire within a person is insecurity, and the fuel is a way to feel secure.

              Waiting for another person to give you fuel is just chock full of insecurities. When other don’t want to do so, or their fuel doesn’t work well for you, your fire will become smaller. When your security depends on someone else, you give away all of your power. This is why when you’re rejected, neglected, or betrayed, you feel insecure.

              Giving yourself the fuel you need is how to make your own security really sustainable.

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              1. Fuel Your Own Fire

                Maybe you felt rejected when you were small. Or in you previous relationship, others made you feel unimportant or didn’t respect you. They didn’t reflect your self-worth.

                When you feel insecure, you are often focused on something you feel is lacking about you. For example, when you don’t feel good about who you are on the inside, it is totally natural to look outside of yourself for validation.

                But this isn’t a good way to stay self-sufficient. Instead, do something to make yourself feel good and secure, and you will no longer look outside for validation. Get a haircut, go to an interest class, and do what you’re good at. If you want to know more about how to feel good about yourself, read We Don’t Need More Likes, We Need Self-Esteem.

                2. Keep Your Fuel Independent From Your Partner’s

                  Even when you’re in a relationship, it’s crucial to keep your independence. Any health relationship is comprised of two healthy people. Becoming overly enmeshed in a relationship can lead to badly-defined boundaries. You’ll have an overly diffuse sense of your own needs.

                  When you aren’t dependent on your relationship to fill your needs, you feel more secure about your life. It’s important to maintain a sense of self-identity and take care of your own needs. If you had hobbies and passions prior to your relationship, keep maintaining them. For example, if you’re a runner, continue getting up early and making that a priority in your life. Having your own life outside of a relationship also make you continually interesting and helps you to grow.

                  Everyone has what they need to feel secure. Most people don’t realize it and try to look for it from others. But relying on others to make you feel secure is not healthy and will drain a relationship. Do what makes you feel confident and worthy, stop looking for others’ validation and you’ll find the security you’ve always needed. Light your own fire.

                  Reference

                  [1] Psychologist Word: Attachment Theory

                  More by this author

                  Anna Chui

                  Anna is a communication expert and a life enthusiast. She's the editor of Lifehack and loves to write about love, life, and passion.

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                  Last Updated on September 12, 2019

                  12 Things You Should Remember When Feeling Lost in Life

                  12 Things You Should Remember When Feeling Lost in Life

                  Even the most charismatic people you know, whether in person or celebrities of some sort, experience days where they feel lost in life and isolated from everyone else.

                  While it’s good to know we aren’t alone in this feeling, the question still remains:

                  What should we do when we feel lost and lonely?

                  Here are 12 things to remember:

                  1. Recognize That It’s Okay!

                  The truth is, there are times you need to be alone. If you’ve always been accustomed to being in contact with people, this may prove difficult.

                  However, learning how to be alone and comfortable in your own skin will give you confidence and a sense of self reliance.

                  We cheat ourselves out of the opportunity to become self reliant when we look for constant companionship.

                  Learn how to embrace your me time: What Your Fear of Being Alone Is Really About and How to Get over It

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                  2. Use Your Lost and Loneliness as a Self-Directing Guide

                  You’ve most likely heard the expression: “You have to know where you’ve been to know where you’re going.”

                  Loneliness also serves as a life signal to indicate you’re in search of something. It’s when we’re in the midst of solitude that answers come from true soul searching.

                  Remember, there is more to life than what you’re feeling.

                  3. Realize Loneliness Helps You Face the Truth

                  Being in the constant company of others, although comforting sometimes, can often serve as a distraction when we need to face the reality of a situation.

                  Solitude cuts straight to the chase and forces you to deal with the problem at hand. See it as a blessing that can serve as a catalyst to set things right!

                  4. Be Aware That You Have More Control Than You Think

                  Typically, when we see ourselves as being lost or lonely, it gives us an excuse to view everything we come in contact with in a negative light. It lends itself to putting ourselves in the victim mode, when the truth of the matter is that you choose your attitude in every situation.

                  No one can force a feeling upon you! It is YOU who has the ultimate say as to how you choose to react.

                  5. Embrace the Freedom That the Feeling of Being Alone Can Offer

                  Instead of wallowing in self pity, which many are prone to do because of loneliness, try looking at your circumstance as a new-found freedom.

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                  Most people are in constant need of approval of their viewpoints. Try enjoying the fact that  you don’t need everyone you care about to support your decisions.

                  6. Acknowledge the Person You Are Now

                  Perhaps you feel a sense of loneliness and confusion because your life circumstances have taken you away from the persona that others know to be you.

                  Perhaps the new you differs radically from the old. Realize that life is about change and how we react to that change. It’s okay that you’re not who you used to be.

                  Take a look at this article and learn to accept your imperfect self: Accept Yourself (Flaws and All): 7 Benefits of Being Vulnerable

                  7. Keep Striving to Do Your Best

                  Often those who are feeling isolated and unto themselves will develop a defeatist attitude. They’ll do substandard work because their self esteem is low and they don’t care.

                  Never let this feeling take away your sense of worth! Do your best always and when you come through this dark time, others will admire how you stayed determined in spite of the obstacles you had to overcome.

                  And to live your best life, you must do this ONE thing: step out of your comfort zone.

                  8. Don’t Forget That Time Is Precious

                  When we’re lost in a sea of loneliness and depression, it’s all too easy to reflect on regrets of past life events. This does nothing but feed negativity and perpetuate the situation.

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                  Instead of falling prey to this common pitfall, put one foot in front of the other and acknowledge every positive step you take. By doing this, you can celebrate the struggles you overcome at the end of the day.

                  9. Remember, Things Happen for a Reason

                  Every circumstance we encounter in our life is designed to teach us and that lesson is in turn passed on to others.

                  Sometimes we’re fortunate enough to figure out the lesson to be learned, while other times, we simply need to have faith that if the lesson wasn’t meant directly for us to learn from, how we handled it was observed by someone who needed to learn.

                  Your solitude and feeling of lost, in this instance, although painful possibly, may be teaching someone else.

                  10. Journal During This Time

                  Record your thoughts when you’re at the height of loneliness and feeling lost. You’ll be amazed when you reflect back at how you viewed things at the time and how far you’ve come later.

                  This time (if recorded) can give you a keen insight into who you are and what makes you feel the way you feel.

                  11. Remember You Aren’t the First to Feel This Way

                  It’s quite common to feel as if we’re alone and no one else has ever felt this way before. We think this because at the time of our distress, we’re silently observing others around us who are seemingly fine in every way.

                  The truth is, we can’t possibly know the struggles of those around us unless they elect to share them. We ALL have known this pain!

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                  Try confiding in someone you trust and ask them how they deal with these feelings when they experienced it. You may be surprised at what you learn.

                  12. Ask for Help If the Problem Persists

                  The feeling of being lost and lonely is common to everyone, but typically it will last for a relatively short period of time.

                  Most people will confess to, at one time or another, being in a “funk.” But if the problem persists longer than you feel it should, don’t ignore it.

                  When your ability to reason and consider things rationally becomes impaired, do not poo poo the problem away and think it isn’t worthy of attention. Seek medical help.

                  Afraid to ask for help? Here’s how to change your outlook to aim high!

                  Final Thoughts

                  Loneliness and a sense of feeling lost can in many ways be extremely painful and difficult to deal with at best. However, these feelings can also serve as a catalyst for change in our lives if we acknowledge them and act.

                  Above anything, cherish your mental well being and don’t underestimate its worth. Seek professional guidance if you’re unable to distinguish between a sense of freedom for yourself and a sense of despair.

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                  Featured photo credit: Andrew Neel via unsplash.com

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