Apr. 13, 2016
We all have needs, whether met or unmet. We would hardly be human if we didn't and there's no shame or weakness in desiring validation and affection. What can be truly out of alignment in our lives (bringing unnecessary pain) is either refusing to acknowledge our needs or being unable to voice them to others especially a partner.
The only way we can begin to get our needs met is to enter into a process of open communication both with ourselves and with others and honestly admitting what we require and then taking responsibility for our own happiness. Not only will such expression help us to satisfy our own needs, it also helps us to appreciate those of others, and affords them the safety and respect of coming forward with preferences of their own. In this way, we affirm that we are neither masters nor followers, but we are all co-creators.
In a relationship, we might see our needs as conflicting with those of our lover but it's really only the way in which we seek satisfaction that ever conflicts. If we want to gaze deeply into our other's eyes during sex, while they prefer to avoid eye contact, our real needs aren't about eye-gazing or not. The real needs are: "I need connection" or "I need independence." And it's perfectly possible to meet those respective needs for both. Our desire to feel connected may stem from childhood experience of abandonment; our lover's need for independence may stem from a childhood experience of manipulation. If we understand and voice our needs we can honor them both, because we have built empathy rather than resentment. Empowering ourselves and others is a natural byproduct of expressing and exploring our needs openly and directly.
Thanks for reading.
Live. Well. Now.