Owning It: Claiming Your Power in Your Relationship

Updated: Jun 25

As seen on Psychology Today


You have much more power than you realize in your relationship. When I say this, I don't mean that you have power over your partner. I mean you are not powerless in how you feel with your partner and about your partner.



You may feel powerless, but feelings aren’t facts. When you learn how to take ownership of your part—how you show up and what you bring with you—you will see that you have choices and options. You will see that you can show up in a different way and start co-creating a new dynamic, one that feels more peaceful and connected. It starts with becoming aware of how you are co-creating your current dynamic. With awareness comes choices, and choices move us out of stuckness.


In your relationship, it is your job to take ownership of your judgments, expectations, and stories or assumptions. It’s your responsibility to look at how you are showing up with your partner and co-creating the current dynamic, and to then start showing up differently. And it’s up to you to do the inner healing work and to look at old wounds, so that you’re not recreating unhealthy relational patterns from the past in your current relationship.


It may sound like a lot to take ownership of. You don’t have to have all the answers immediately, and change takes time. The key to changing is becoming aware of what’s currently happening.

The following tips will guide you in taking ownership of your part of the dynamic—judgments, expectations, stories, co-creating the current dynamic, etc. —so that you can begin to co-create a relationship that feels better for you:


1. Meditation. By learning to pay attention and observing what is there, you will begin to know your mind better. You will practice observing thoughts and letting them go. You will realize that not every thought needs to matter. This will strengthen your ability to be aware of judgments, expectations, stories, and assumptions, so that you can choose whether or not to act from those thoughts. Sometimes you may choose that those thoughts don’t matter for the good of your relationship and for your own wellness.


2. Eliminate blame. When you blame, you give away so much power for change. You can blame your partner all day long, and it won’t get you anywhere. But,if you look at your part of what is being created in your relationship, you can begin to look at what you can do differently. When you do things differently, a different dynamic gets created. You can’t fix a relationship by yourself, but you can make a lot of changes by becoming aware of how you’re showing up and choosing to show up differently.


3. Do the inner work. It’s important to heal from old wounds. These wounds could be from childhood or more recent. If these wounds go unattended, they will fester. They will influence your behavior, perceptions, and how safe you’re able to feel in your relationship. Healing takes courage and strength, but it is important to do this work so that you have choices in how you experience things. If you’re not aware that an old wound is being touched in the present, you can only react. If you are aware, you can act in ways that take care of the wounded parts of you, and you can choose how you want to respond in the present.


Awareness is key. No matter how self-aware you are, there is always more to become aware of. It’s important to work to heal and change so that you can co-create the relationship you long for but haven’t yet been able to experience. You have much more power to do so than you yet know.

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