Do You Have A Healthy Relationship Role Model?
So many of the couples and singles that I conduct relationship counseling with, complain that they had poor role models for relationships growing up. Dad was an alcoholic or mom was depressed. They fought all the time or they only argued behind closed doors. They never showed affection towards each other or were overly flirtatious in social settings. They divorced when you were seven or your father left before you were born.
Guess what? You’re an ADULT now! If the relationship role models you had growing up weren’t great examples of “living happily ever after” then you GET TO CHOOSE NEW ONES!
Life is about growth and change and if you want to change your relationship patterns, perhaps it would be good to find examples of healthy relationships to emulate. It’s NEVER too late and I encourage you to begin RIGHT NOW!
The first step in identifying new, healthy relationship role models is to identify what your VALUES are. Yes, you may fantasize about being a rich, famous and beautiful couple like Brad and Angelina or some other “power couple,” but do they share the VALUES that you want to express in your life?
Take some time to write down what is important to you. Is it integrity? Deep love and intimacy? Prosperity? Security? Commitment? Freedom? Write it all down and once you have your list, prioritize it. What is most important to you? What is least important? Do any of the values conflict? How can you resolve the contradictions?
Now that you’ve established your values, you can look out into the world around you and identify role models. It might be a couple (or a single) that you’ve never met, but read about in a newspaper or on the Internet that really inspires you or touches you. It might be a close friend or someone in your peer group. It might be someone in your local community. If it IS someone more available, you can reach out to them directly or perhaps be introduced through a common third party.
If it’s someone less accessible, learn more about them from observation and from reading about them. If it’s someone famous they may have a biography or even better, an autobiography! Find out as much about them as you can.
Perhaps it isn’t even someone alive, like an historical figure. Or it might be someone who was NEVER alive, perhaps a great figure in literature. You can begin to attend to how they integrate the qualities you admire in their lives and then do the same.
Remember, it’s a process and please be patient with yourself. Allow yourself to grow! As you expand and mature further in these qualities, how you want to express them may shift and your role models may change. Be open and willing for this to happen. And PLEASE, don’t be self-critical about this. Have fun with it and enjoy the process. After all, you have committed to having a better life and a better relationship. That counts for a lot!
Please comment below with your thoughts and with YOUR relationship role models. I would love to know who inspires you and why.
Thank you so much,
Dr. Adam Sheck
If you’ve enjoyed this article and want to learn more of my thoughts on this topic and about reigniting the passion in your relationship, please download my Free, Special Report, “20 Rituals for Romance!” and subscribe to my free, monthly Passion Doctor Newsletter at the top of this page.