Most couples agree with me that they’d rather be happy than unhappy. That’s an easy question. Then I ask them are they happy in their relationship. That’s another easy question. Now come the more challenging question, “How do you make your partner responsible for your happiness?”
The answers I hear all include the word ‘get’. “I need to get my partner to be more thoughtful.” “I need to get my partner to listen to what I’m saying more often.” “I need to get my partner to stop getting defensive when I try to share my feelings.” There’s a common theme here right? Each partner is trying to change the other so that they give them the gift of happiness. Until then they’re not going to be happy in their relationship.
What if there was another way to feel happy in your relationship? What if both partners took personal responsibility for making themselves happy? What if instead of looking to your partner to make you happy, you found your own happiness on your own and brought that into the relationship. Then instead of relying on your partner and your relationship to make you happy, you would make yourself happy and then share your happiness with your partner? What do you think about that?
My experience is that when each partner does this their relationship is more joyful. The sharing of happiness replaces the arguing and controlling behaviors whose purpose is to get the other person to make you ultimately feel happy. When you’re happy you’re more accepting of your partner and when their behavior is unacceptable then you speak your truth and set a loving boundary. And you’re still happy.
You’re happiness is your right. You’re happiness is what you want. Your happiness is your responsibility. You don’t need your partner’s permission or participation in your relationship to allow you to feel happy.
So if you’re happy and you know it…Dance! And then bring your dance into your relationship. You may be surprised to find out you have the dance partner you’ve been looking for! And if you don’t, you’ll still have your dance!