There are power dynamics at play in every type of relationship. So it should come as no surprise that there will be a power dynamic in your romantic relationship as well. In some partnerships there is an equal amount of power and respect, and in others, one partner holds most of the power. To make things even more complicated, the power can shift at different points in your relationship. Maybe in the beginning you two never thought of power and respect because it felt equally distributed. But then, as time went on, you noticed things shifting and you felt like your boyfriend or girlfriend somehow had more power. Wait a second, weren’t you the Beyonce of this couple?
It’s normal for the power dynamic to shift in a relationship. Many things could have made the partnership structure change. But once it has swayed into a new direction (one that you may not love), how do you get on equal footing? If your man has gotten a little too “Kanye West” on you, how do you gain more power and respect in the relationship? How do you turn this ship around and sail towards a more peaceful and happy sea?
Below are some ways you can gain more power and respect in your romantic relationship.
1. Speak up
One way to become more powerful is to use your voice. Be clear about your wants and needs. If you don’t speak up for yourself, who else will? Remember, your partner ain’t no Syliva Browne, he or she can’t read your mind. Therefore, you need to use your words and tell him/her what you want and need in your partnership.
2. Be more independent
Destiny’s Child wasn’t wrong when they told us to be independent. Being strong and independent doesn’t mean you don’t need your partner in any way, it just shows that you are capable of doing things on your own, as a powerful individual. Being able to be self-sufficient while in a relationship is crucial. Your partner will admire you for this autonomy, and so will you.
3. Have boundaries
Everyone has their own set of rules and boundaries that they are comfortable with. You will have boundaries in your relationship and it’s vital you keep them. There are some things that will cross the line for you and you need to be able to draw that line firmly.
4. The golden rule
Instead of following the yellow brick road, how about you follow the golden rule. An easy way of gaining respect is to treat your partner the way you would like to be treated. If you want respect and consideration you have to give it to your significant other as well.
5. Follow through on your word
Saying something and doing the opposite is one way to quickly lose respect. Actions speak louder than words — especially in relationships. So, if you tell your partner that there will be certain repercussions for something and you don’t follow through, he or she won’t take you seriously. Or even if you make a small promise to your lover, you must keep it. Say what you mean, and mean what you say.
6. Do not settle
There’s nothing more confident and attractive as somebody who knows what he or she deserves. If you’re in a relationship where your partner knows he or she can get away with anything, well then, your power and respect have already gone out the window. Stand up for yourself and don’t be afraid to walk away from a relationship that isn’t beneficial to you.
7. Respect yourself
If you don’t respect yourself, then who else will? It starts with yourself. You have to show how you want to be treated. This will come through with how you treat yourself. How do you talk about yourself? Do you give yourself any power? How do you view yourself? Take a moment to truly think about how you respect yourself. Remember, confidence is contagious.