Perhaps, every person dreams of finding the very ideal partner who will intuitively guess our feelings, emotions, and needs and will naturally do things to satisfy them. However, it is almost impossible. Why? Because most of us don’t even have a clue about their needs in a relationship. Let alone, they know how to satisfy those emotional needs themselves. No wonder it gets so hard, close to impossible, to find a different person who will guess our emotional needs. That’s why, if you get on the road of mindful dating, one of the first things to do along with understanding your core values, is to acknowledge your emotional needs.
What Are Relationship Needs?
The range of human needs can be classified into several categories like physical, economic, emotional, and so forth. Nonetheless, a significant portion of relationship needs is rooted in the psychological sphere.
The key ones are as follows:
- Affection: This can be conveyed through romantic actions, declarations of love, and physical intimacy.
- Respect: This implies that your viewpoint is taken into account by your partner.
- Appreciation: This involves receiving recognition and commendation from your partner.
- Security: This refers to a sense of both physical and emotional well-being.
- Loyalty: This means that both parties in the relationship remain committed to each other.
- Trust: This involves complete openness in all life aspects.
These concepts can be organized in a hierarchy, allowing every person to decide which are essential and which ones possess more fluidity. Say, respect might be your priority and you expect your partner to adhere to these values in the first turn. Consequently, rude behavior or infidelity become non-negotiables for you.
It’s up to each individual to identify their personal needs and seek a partner who aligns with their core values.
How Can the Knowledge of Your Relationship Needs Help You?
Once you have identified your central relationship needs, you hold a key to your perfect dating and long-term relationships.
- First, understanding your needs helps to improve self-awareness. It allows you to understand what makes you happy and what does not. When you are clear about your needs, you can discern who you want to interact with, either consciously or subconsciously, by comparing your needs with the qualities and values of another person. Recognizing your needs in a relationship can help you assess compatibility early on. If your needs align well with your partner’s, the relationship will likely be more satisfying and fulfilling for both of you.
- Second, you can learn how to satisfy your relationship needs yourself, and consequently, you will become much happier and less dependent on your partner. Surprisingly, this fact will make your couple even stronger, because you will feel less needy, more energized, and less demanding to your partner.
- Third, once you know how to fulfill your emotional needs, you can help your partner show love to you. Most of the time we show love the way we want to receive it, having no idea of how our partners want to be loved. By knowing yourself better, you can get to know what to ask and, for sure, you will avoid groundless expectations and all related frustration. You can communicate your relationship needs effectively to your partner, which can lead to a healthier and more satisfying relationship.
- Fourth, it will become way easier for you to establish boundaries. You will know your non-negotiables and quickly identify them. For example, if your emotional need is loyalty, you will not tolerate dating a partner who dates several people at the same time.
So, just by being aware of your relationship needs, you get a solid foundation for mutual understanding, effective communication, emotional health, and personal growth, all of which contribute to a fulfilling and lasting relationship. It’s tempting, isn’t it?
Why Is It Hard to Acknowledge Your Emotional Needs in a Relationship?
Unfortunately, there are some common misconceptions that stop us from thinking about our emotional needs. Many people try to hide from them simply because of having relationship needs, accepting this fact makes them think that they are needy and weak. But in reality, this is exactly this behavior – running from your needs – that makes you look needy and dissatisfied. It is perfectly ok to have needs. We all have them, but it is not ok to have urgent unmet relationship needs and blame your partner for all the misfortunes related to it. Remember that our partners are there for love and happiness, they don’t come to satisfy all of our needs. So, the sooner you start working on your relationship needs, the faster your relationship becomes strong and healthy.
One more popular misconception is thinking that a simple act of asking your partner can make you look weak and needy. No, it can’t. Instead of thinking that you are opening up about your weaknesses, consider this as an act of sharing the ways to your heart. Most often, our partners really want to make us happy, they just don’t know how to do it. Or they do it the way they are used to doing it. We show love the way our parents did, we show love the way we want to get love, but not necessarily this is the way your partners want to get love.
In the end, having relationship needs and emotional needs is natural. And when you manage to identify them, learn to satisfy them, and even teach others how they can do it for you, you turn your needs into your best friends and the driver of your perfect relationships.
How to Understand Your Relationship Needs?
In the book The Secret Laws of Attraction, Talane Miedaner gives two simple ways to check your needs. Below we will give you one of them with some explanations. Ready to take your first step to stop being needy? Let’s go!
Check Out Yours from the Relationship Needs List
This method will perfectly suit people with good self-reflection. Be careful as it will require a lot of honesty from you. It may happen that you won’t like how some of the needs sound, but in reality, you can have them and you just need to be brave to accept it. Remember that it is absolutely normal to have emotional needs and, if you acknowledge them, you get closer to satisfying them and becoming less needy and more attractive. So if you are ready, take a pen and check the relationship needs list below and circle or underline the needs that resonate with you.
The List of Personal and Emotional Needs
- To Be Acknowledged: Recognized, Respected, Praised, Honored, Noticed, Cheered, Seen.
- To Be Responsible: Accountable, Promises, Obligations, Duty, Fairness, Justice, Commitments, Duty, Do the Right Thing, Justice, Have a Mission, Be Devoted, Obliged, Pledge.
- Control: Influence, Command, Power, Manage, Administer, Take the Reins, Lead, Rule, Strategize, Organize, Dominate, Guide, Supervise, Strength, Power.
- To Be Heard: Express Yourself, Talk Openly, Communicate, Stay Connected, Be Comprehended, Share and Exchange, Be understood.
- To Be Touched: Embraced, Connected, Hugged, Kissed, Massaged, Caressed.
- To be Helpful: Useful, Necessary, Essential, Needed, Care for, Give, Serve.
- To Be First: Lead, Triumph, Excel, Master, Defeat, Overcome, Persuade, Succeed.
- To Work: Be Occupied, Have a Profession, Act, Generate, Take Measures.
- Honesty: Truthfulness, Realness, Fidelity, Transparency, Authenticity, Factuality, Loyalty, Truthful.
- Order: Making Lists, Cleanliness, Discipline, Orderliness, Habits, Frameworks, Neatness, Schedules, Consistency, Perfection, Tidiness.
- Peace: Balance, Agreement, Solitude, Calm, Stillness, Harmony, Silence, Quiet.
- To Be Valued: Appreciated, Acknowledged, Noted, Recognised, Respected, Thanked, Honored, Praised, Worthy.
- Freedom: Independent, Self-Reliant, Self-Governing, Unconstrained, Free from Obligations, Self-Decided, Autonomous, Limitless.
- To Be Right: Correct, Comprehended, Not Mistaken.
- Security: Protection, Safety, Guarantee, Assurance, Steadiness, Stability, Commitments, Guarantees, Insurance.
- To Be Loved: Cherished, Adored, Esteemed, Desired, Enjoyed, Valued, Liked, Treasured.
- Comfort: Abundance, Luxury, Convenience, Wealth, Pleasure, Relaxed, Restorative, Ease.
- To Be Assisted: Supported, Embraced, Motivated, Nurtured, Given Gifts, Helped, Looked After, Provided For, Valued, Maintained, Greeted.
- To Be Accepted: Approved, Allowed, Permitted, Respected, Favored, Validated, Confirmed.
- To Fulfill: Achieve, Reach, Execute, Get results, Put into Action, Manifest.
- Accuracy: Clarity, Assurance, Certainty, Awareness, Confidence, Exactness.
For more ideas of needs, you can check the Talane Miedaner book.
Well, now that you have your relationship needs list, let’s make it shorter until it includes only 4-6 core needs. There are several approaches to how you can do it.
Pick those you like most
Choose those that are the most important for you. If you satisfy your key needs, you feel that all the rest are satisfied automatically. The bigger needs in your understanding can already include some smaller ones. Select those that feel closer to you, the needs without satisfying which you will feel unhappy. For sure, you can also add your own needs using the relationship needs list.
In the end, you can get something like this:
- To be loved (including to be supported, treasured, given gifts, taken care of, kissed).
- To have balance (to feel harmony, agreement, and safety).
- To be appreciated (to be acknowledged, thanked, admired).
- To be needed (to be helpful, to care for others).
Pick those you dislike most
Sometimes we dislike things because we try to hide from them as they make us feel vulnerable. Those are the needs we hide from others but desperately desire to fulfill. Review the list with this perspective one more time.
Be attentive to your bad moments
Unmet needs in a relationship and neediness make people irritated and unpleasant. Pay particular attention to the situations when you feel annoyed. Probably, this is the moment when your unmet need speaks for you.
Think about what you like to do for others
Quite often we show love the way we want to receive it. This is also true for needs. Think about what you usually do for others in a relationship. It is highly likely that you expect exactly the same thing in return and this is the clue to your needs. Pay particular attention to the things that you are sure “this is the way normal people show love”. Most likely this is the way you want to receive love and those are your needs. And it can happen that your partner wants to receive love in a slightly different way.
Ask someone who knows you well
Let’s say you are in doubt whether you really have some need or not. This method will be especially useful when you review the list of the needs you don’t like. Say, your need is to Be First. You can ask your partner about it. And perhaps you will really hear a reply that you are always trying to win even in table games and get offended if you don’t manage. Don’t take it too close to heart, it is just an indicator of your need. Now that you know about it, you can fulfill it and feel happier and more complete.
The Quiz method
If you find it hard to identify your needs just by looking at the list, you can try the Quiz Method suggested by Talane Miedaner. This quiz was developed by professional coaches and tested on many clients. The quiz consists of situations that encourage you to feel something. Then you are asked to pick the feelings that seem close to you. You can also ask your friend or someone who knows you well to make a better choice. Because the same rule about introspection applies to this method. You need to be very honest with yourself; otherwise, your results will not be very useful.
For example, one of the situations listed is:
You are always doing favors for other people, even at your own personal expense.
- Need to be accepted/ liked.
- Need to be appreciated.
- Need to be useful/needed.
Taking a quiz is easier than working with the relationship needs list, so we highly recommend you try it. You can check its full version either in the book The Secret Laws of Attraction or on the website emotionalindex.com.
The Secret Laws of Attraction by Talane Miedaner
This book can become your guide to a loving relationship through understanding your needs and values. It can help you find the answer to Why do you keep finding the wrong partners? And How to fix it? In this book, you will find good advice on how to identify your emotional needs and values and learn to fulfill them. All this will make you a way more attractive person, in the end, irresistible if you wish.
Now that you know your needs in a relationship, you can start your journey to satisfying them. Look at your needs list and think carefully which ones you can satisfy without involving your partner. Many of them, say, financial safety, emotional support, and comfort, you can give to yourself. Others, for example, being appreciated, are easier and more pleasurable to get from other people. However, you don’t have to get all these needs met by your partner. You can ask your mom to praise you more, or you can talk more openly with your best friend and ask her to listen to you. By making your partner the only person responsible for your emotional needs, you risk losing a good partner and ruining a relationship.
The next big thing to do is to tell people how they can help you fulfill your needs. Remember that it is useless to expect from people that they will guess what you need. Tell them and you will get it much faster. If you feel puzzled by how to satisfy your relationship needs, think about how you would support a person who has this need. For example, if your partner needed appreciation, perhaps, you would praise him or her more, avoid criticism, and highlight his or her best qualities. Ask other people to do this for you or do it yourself. Make up a list of what you are proud of. Remember your accomplishments rather than failures.
Bit by bit, you will teach yourself to satisfy your relationship needs and start feeling much happier.