Emotional balance is such an important part of your wellbeing and happiness. What I mean by “emotional balance” is feeling that you are getting comfort and caring in a way that feels good to you. This comfort and caring can come from a combination of loved ones, friends, spouse, or yourself. Often we have to learn what we need so that we can make healthy decisions about how we get these emotional needs met. That is the key to finding the right balance for you–learning and exploring what works better and what doesn’t work in your relationships and with your primary support system.
In my work with women, this is a huge focus because women often haven’t taken the time to really examine what is right for them emotionally. I often see women leaving relationships (lifelong parters) because they are shut-down emotionally or depressed in their primary relationship. Or they are not being met emotionally because their partner is lost in his cave or retreating due to his struggles in life. But the key is learning from these experiences–not just feeling victimized and angry.
One way to learn is to engage in Couples Therapy that addresses the bonding process in a relationship, ie, how each of the partners likes to attach and feel cared for can really help teach women and men how to find a healthy emotional balance in their relationship. Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy (EFT) and Internal Family Systems Therapy (IFS) are two approaches that create changes in the bonding process and help couples find a healthier connection with each other.
As a woman, here are some things you can explore to help you find what is a healthy emotional balance for you:
1) What is your attachment style, or the way that you attach or connect to others?
2) Do you connect easily in relationships or do you tend to distrust others or feel afraid of connecting with others or fearful of others caring for you?
3) Have you experienced loss and trauma in relationships? Anyone who has divorced or left a relationship has this. What have you done to help you move through this trauma and learn your part in it and the suffering you felt as a result.
4) What are the patterns of attachment in your past relationships? Is this a similar pattern to your relationship with your parent? Is it working for you?
5) What do you crave in a relationship? What behaviors make you feel loved and cared for?
6) What are you doing to care and nurture yourself on a daily basis? This will help you to see what feels nurturing and caring so you can look for it more in your relationships.