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Published on July 19, 2019

Are You Too Needy In Relationships? 9 Signs You Are And How to Stop

Are You Too Needy In Relationships? 9 Signs You Are And How to Stop

A healthy relationship should make you feel good about yourself. You should feel motivated, loving, and full of life.

But just because you want to be your best self around your partner doesn’t mean that you always will. Sometimes being in a relationship will make you feel self-conscious, anxious, and needy.

Being needy has its ups and downs. Having the occasional bout of need can remind your partner how special they are to you and make your relationship stronger. But unhealthy need can result in jealousy and stress. It can also make your partner feel smothered and cause you to feel like you don’t know who you are anymore.

Loving and needing your partner is a wonderful part of a relationship. But an over-abundance of need can actually do more harm than good.

In this article, I’ll cover the signs of being too needy and how to stop it from sabotaging your relationship.

9 Signs of Neediness

Here are 9 signs that you are being too needy with your spouse and how to stop these toxic behaviors.

1. Losing a Sense of Self

When you are in a relationship, it’s only natural that you want to spend all of your time with your spouse. But there is such a thing as spending too much time together.

If you spend an inordinate amount of time trying to please your spouse, spend time with them, or agree with them, you will begin to lose your identity.

If you would not know who you were if you and your spouse broke up, you are likely too needy.

2. Overreactions are Common

It’s normal for couples to argue every now and again, but it is not normal to have explosive arguments over nothing.

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If your spouse talks to someone of the opposite sex (or preferred gender) and it sends you into a flurry of accusations, it may be time to start rethinking how close you are with your spouse.

3. Always Texting

Couples who text each other all day are adorable, aren’t they? Yes, checking in with your partner via text is a cute and sweet way to let them know that you are thinking about them.

But if your conversation seems one-sided or consists of you sending more than two or three texts in a row without getting a response, you definitely have a problem on your hands.

4. Extreme Jealousy

There is such a thing as a healthy level of jealousy. After all, jealousy is just the heart’s way of reminding you that something is important to you.

Feelings of jealousy should be used as a gentle reminder to cherish your partner – not as a catalyst to freak out on or control them.

5. Never Missing Each Other

You never miss each other because you are never apart. You have all the same friends and don’t spend a moment apart. This is not a healthy behavior.

Healthy relationships happen when two people are still able to maintain some level of independence.

Having your own hobbies and friendships that bring you joy will help you from being overly needy in your romantic relationship.

6. Social Media Stalking

Jealousy and neediness become unhealthy when they lead you to have frequent anxiety over what your spouse is doing when you are not around.

Instead of working on developing deeper bonds of trust – a quality which is essential for a happy relationship – you use your neediness as an excuse to social media stalk your spouse. You rage against or manipulate your partner into giving you the password for all of their online accounts just to settle your own worries.

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This is very unhealthy, toxic relationship behavior.

7. Moving Way Too Fast

Being needy is often a sign of low self-esteem.

When you are insecure, you quickly attach yourself to your partner. This often leads to moving too fast sexually and maybe even moving in together after only a couple of weeks.

If things are moving quicker than normal in your relationship, it could be a sign that you are being overly needy.

8. A Desperate Need of Constant Reassurance

“I’m so ugly,” you say.

“Don’t say that,” your partner coos. “You’re beautiful!”

Your spouse is always quick to jump to your defense or give you genuine compliments. But no matter how many times your spouse reassures you of their love for your, their attraction to your, or their loyalty to your relationship, you never believe them.

This need for constant reassurance can be draining and damaging to your relationship.

9. Feeling Depressed When Not Being Together

It’s normal to miss your partner if they go away for the weekend without you. But falling into a deep depression or anxiety-filled panic attack at the thought of being away from your partner for an extended period of time is no healthy. This is definitely a sign that you are too needy in your relationship.

You need to start working on yourself and focus on your needs as an individual, not in a couple.

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How to Get Over Relationship Neediness

Being needy is not something you can get over in a single day. It is deep-rooted behavior and like any bad habit, it will take hard work, time, and determination to fix.

Here are three tips for banishing unhealthy neediness from your relationship for good.

Work on Healthy Communication

Good communication is the backbone of a great relationship. It’s how couples learn to work as a team, resolve arguments in a healthy manner, and get to know one another on a deeper level.

If being needy is ruining your relationship, you need to start learning how to express yourself in other ways. Practice talking to your partner. Use “I” statements instead of “You” statements so that they do not feel like they have to be defensive when speaking to you.

Explain your insecurities to your spouse so that they can have empathy for you and understand better why you are reacting to situations in a certain way.

This is sure to strengthen your relationship.

Take a Social Media Break

Social media can be very damaging to our mental health. Studies show that those who spend time on social media tend to have more issues with mental health than those who do not.[1] Not only is this due to the high number of social media accounts (fitness, celebrity, couples) that present an unrealistic and unattainable view of life, but also because they open a window into your partner’s past.

Stalking your spouse’s ex online can drive you into a never-ending web of jealousy and low self-esteem. Watching your spouse interact on social media can also make you endlessly nervous, suspicious, and paranoid about what may be going on behind your back.

Even if your partner has never given you a reason to distrust them, you may still find yourself feeling rotten when you’re online.

Do yourself a favor and take a social media break for a week and see how much better you feel. If your neediness or controlling behavior have lessened over the week, consider jumping off the social media bandwagon for good. Not only will this better your relationship, but it will also improve your mental health.

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Go to Counseling

Couples therapy can be incredibly helpful in banishing toxic neediness from your relationship. Your counselor will help you work through communication issues and discuss any past experiences that may be causing the distrust in your relationship.

MidAmerica Nazarene University surveyed 1000 couples who were either engaged, married, or divorced to learn more about marriage counseling and how effective it is.[2] Results revealed that 49 percent of participants had attended some form of counseling as a couple, with millennials most likely to attend therapy. A staggering 71 percent of participants said that counseling was either helpful or very helpful for their marriage.[3]

Taking an online marriage course can also be helpful, as it will teach you healthy communication techniques that you can use to talk to your spouse instead of having a toxic, needy reaction to certain circumstances.

Going to solo counseling can also be highly beneficial for helping you get to the root of the problem in your relationship or with yourself. Your therapist can help you develop healthy relationship habits and find your true self.

Final Thoughts

Don’t let neediness ruin a good thing in your relationship.

Your spouse deserves your trust and the freedom to have a healthy social life without you always being by their side. Letting go also helps you to live a happier life.

Improve your mental health by banishing needy tendencies for good.

Featured photo credit: Candice Picard via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] National Center for Health Research: Social Media and Adolescents’ and Young Adults’ Mental Health
[2] Marriage: Marriage Counseling for Couples
[3] MNU: 1000 couples

More by this author

Sylvia Smith

Sylvia is a big believer in living consciously and encourages couples to adopt its principles in their relationships.

How To Resolve Relationship Conflicts without Hurting Each Other How Being Vulnerable Leads to a Healthy and Fulfilling Relationship How the 5 Love Languages Help Strengthen Your Relationship 12 Marriage Books Couples Should Read for a Healthy Relationship How to Spend More Quality Time with Your Partner

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Last Updated on May 28, 2020

10 Success Principles for Living Your Dream Life

10 Success Principles for Living Your Dream Life

Are you stressed out and overwhelmed, wishing you had more time to do the things that really matter? Are you ready to do something better, something special in your life or your career?

You were born with a gift that no one else in the world can express like you. When you dance to your own music, you naturally develop your innate abilities and excel in work and life. You are a total rock star. But when you live someone else’s idea of who you should be, it throws off your groove.

Many people—maybe you—stopped following their dreams way too early in life because their talents were ignored, minimized, or shamed. They didn’t have the chops to win an American Idol competition or nab an Olympic gold medal, so they stopped expressing their inborn gifts altogether.

You don’t need to be an award winner to rock your life. Living your dream life is about discovering your superpowers and feeling vibrant and joyful when you use them. It’s about owning what makes you unique and finding like-minded people to support you.

Here are 10 success principles to help you live a rich and rewarding life on your terms that have worked with thousands of people in my workshops and will work for you, too.

1. Get a Hobby to Move Closer to Your Dreams

If you never became a professional dancer or a world-renowned author, it does NOT mean you should stop dancing or writing! These activities make you come alive, even if you “only” do them as favorite pastimes.

Engaging in a hobby is one of the most important success principles you can follow to move closer to your dreams.

When you try something creative for the first time or in a long while, you begin to see opportunities at work and in life that you were unaware of before. You also feel happier and more energized, according to a recent study from New Zealand.[1]

Some of my most burned-out executive clients reinvigorated their careers by discovering a creative outlet that refueled them after the workday ended. Research at San Francisco State University shows that having a hobby lowers stress and helps you succeed at work.[2]

So, give yourself permission to try new things and revisit old passions you gave up long ago. Setting aside just one hour a week for personal exploration can significantly change your life.

Who knows? Your creative outlet could transform into a thriving business or lead to a new profession down the road.

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2. Focus on Your Strengths, Not Your Weaknesses

Did you know that you are more likely to succeed when you develop your natural strengths rather than work on your weaknesses? The problem is that you probably don’t know where your true talents lie.

Here are a few options to help you discover your unique strengths. You can:

  • Take the VIA Character Strengths Survey[3]
  • Try Gallup’s CliftonStrengths Assessment[4]
  • Answer a few Superpower Questions

Once you understand what makes you tick, you can use these skills at work and your personal life to get more done in less time. If you boost your unique abilities through practice and study, you can accelerate your career and become a leader in a field that matters to you. It’s worth investing in yourself this way.

3. Jumping off a Cliff is NOT Required

Here’s the deal: most people are too afraid to change. When participants first come to my workshops, they tell me they have mouths to feed, bills to pay, and fear that if they follow their dreams, someone will get hurt.

The old saying “leap and the net shall appear” does not comfort them. Because they are hesitant to plunge into the unknown, they believe their only option is to stay put where they are in life. Can you relate?

You do not have to sacrifice the life you have now to start a new one. I was a psychology professor by day and singer by night for years before I transitioned into a full-time music career.

Just take a little time out each week to do what enlivens you through a hobby, volunteer work, etc. Get a feel for it.

Is it what you really want? If so, increase the time you spend doing it and make the transition when the time feels right.

4. Give Your Inner Critic Some Love

The main culprit that keeps you from stepping outside your comfort zone and getting the life of your dreams is KCRP or K-CRAP – the radio station that plays 24/7 in your head. The moment you try to do something interesting with your life it slaps you down with such chart-topping killer hooks as “Who do you think you are?” and “You’ll never be good enough!”.

Have you ever noticed that KCRP’s mean-spirited DJ sounds like your parents, teachers, bosses, and other authority figures who shut you down creatively? These folks don’t need to stifle you any longer (although they often still do) because your inner critic does it for them. That keeps you stuck in a rut.

To break free, try thinking of this DJ as a gruff old grandfather who gives you crap to keep you safe. Remember, this grumpy grandpa is woefully out of touch with the times. So, his stern opinions don’t really matter much, do they? Give him a pat on the back for his good intentions, and put your focus back on what makes you come alive.

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This success principle will give you the courage to venture into the unknown where you can dance to the beat of your own drummer.

5. Embrace Your Inner Weirdo

Many of us don’t go after our dreams because we’re afraid folks will find out how odd or strange we are. But our little eccentricities often turn out to be our greatest strengths. Yes, it’s good to be quirky.

Odds are, you lost track of your true passions and talents before you were even old enough to know you were getting off-track. You became slowly “adulterated” by learning to:

  • Take on family roles that don’t match who you really are.
  • Spit back what teachers taught you in school rather than risk getting bad grades for being original.
  • Hide parts of yourself that don’t seem acceptable to certain social groups.

The price for fitting in is that you may wind up leading a life that doesn’t fit you all that well. Your true calling becomes clear when you embrace what makes you different from others and allow yourself to stand out from the crowd, even if it feels awkward.

Often, the very qualities you view as your flaws are your greatest gifts.

6. See the Bigger Picture to Find Your True Calling

I cannot stress the importance of this success principle enough. Your true calling is right in front of you. But you may miss it because you’re looking for it in the wrong place.

To “see” it clearly, try widening your point of view.

Case in point: Maria felt she needed to retire early from being a police detective, so she could travel abroad. I encouraged Maria to think of ways that she could continue to serve as a law enforcer (a career she loved) and travel overseas at the same time.

A few months later, Maria landed a job with the United Nations in Bosnia training the local police force to understand and embrace human rights procedures.

Like Maria, you are an everyday rock star capable of accomplishing greater things than you can imagine. Is what you’re looking for right in front of you, too? Do you have an inkling of what it may be?

Look beyond your day-to-day activities, your current job, and even the town you live in. View your life from an eagle’s perspective and be open to new possibilities.

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7. Try a Little Wish-List Magic

Pretend I’m your fairy godmother and I give you permission right now to be your most magnificent self. What kind of life would be music to your ears? It doesn’t matter whether it seems unattainable or even downright crazy. Write it down on a wish list.

Get quiet. Be honest. Think big.

What would you like your career, your relationships, your health, your finances, and your spiritual life to be like? Jot down enough details so that your wishes seem tangible to you. Then, look at this list every morning before you start your day and every night before you go to sleep.

Sounds silly? It’s not. It works! Permitting yourself to daydream about a rich and fulfilling life is the first step to manifesting it.

8. Take Breaks to Get Clues About Your Ideal Future

Did you know that working straight through to a deadline leads to diminishing returns? Research shows that taking a break for 15 minutes every 75 to 90 minutes can help you recharge, refresh your focus, and get more done in less time.[5]

Wait, it gets better! A Stanford study shows that walking increases your creative output increases by 60 percent. Doing repetitive activities such as walking, running, riding your bike, swimming, and sweeping allow solutions to problems to pop into your mind out of nowhere.[6]

What does this success principle have to do with creating your dream life?

These mini-breaks allow you to get vital clues for what to do next to attain your ideal future. Plus, you won’t waste precious time and energy getting lost in other people’s agendas.

9. Take Action on Your Inspired Ideas

Once an inspired thought pops into your mind, take action.

This is one of the most powerful success principles for turning your dreams into reality; the sooner the better. Whatever it is—from calling an old friend to taking a new route home—be sure to do it!

Pay attention to your oddball hunches. You need to go after what you want, not just dream about it. As comedian Jim Carrey warns,

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“You can’t just visualize and go eat a sandwich.”

10. Count Your Rockstar Moments

Still not sure you have what it takes to get your dream life? This final success principle is guaranteed to help.

Make a list of everything you’ve ever accomplished. As you read back through it, put a star next to each item, and let it sink in.

You’ll be pleasantly surprised by how good you’ll feel about yourself afterward. You’ll also see how effective you’ve been in the past at getting what you want. You’ve succeeded before, you can succeed again.

You already rock. You just need to own it. Trust me, you’ve got this!

Final Thoughts

Eleanor Roosevelt said,

“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”

Following these success principles will help you find the time and energy to do the things that really matter and live with clear intention.

By spending just one hour a week doing something you love, focusing on your strengths and achievements, embracing what makes you different, and acting on inspired ideas, you can create a life that is a perfect fit for you, step-by-step.

If you don’t have a clue about what your dream life could look like yet, don’t worry. Your heart knows. It has been “talking” to you for a long time. It’s just being muffled by KCRP, buried under a lot of “shoulds” and fear.

This article can also help you figure out the life you truly want to live: How to Get Motivated and Be Happy Every Day When You Wake Up.

Stand still, get quiet, and listen. It’s constantly telling you what you need to do to realize your own rockstar potential. It may be just a whisper now, but the more you pay attention to it, the louder it will get, and the easier it will be to follow.

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Featured photo credit: Rahul Dey via unsplash.com

Reference

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