Sandrine Rattan writes a weekly column for the Newsday called With Women In Mind.
It doesn’t matter how loyal you are to someone. You can’t change someone’s heart and bad habits unless they want to themselves – Unknown
Entering a relationship with an agenda to change the other party in the relationship has been identified as one of the biggest influences of failed relationships. Through counselling sessions conducted by the International Women’s Resource Network (IWRN), women are oriented to understand that change can only come from within, and chances of initiating change to your partner’s characteristics are virtually impossible.
When one enters a relationship, it is critical to start by understanding the psyche of your partner and if for some reason, there are elements of displeasure regarding a particular habit and/or behavioural pattern, it is advisable to begin the dialogue urgently.
Habits are sometimes likened to the foundation upon which a house is built, as for the most part, they were developed during the individual’s social orientation from early childhood, and therein lies the challenge. The crunch on the relationship occurs when the habit becomes chronic to the extent that the affected partner begins to experience undue stress which some women and also men have described as “unlivable.”
Creating and maintaining healthy relationships is only possible through openness coupled with a distinct ability to confront issues including untenable habits. If your sole agenda is focused on changing your partner, then more than likely your relationship is heading down an unwinding road.
Habits deemed to be negative can destroy your relationship, and so, both parties have due responsibility to continuously engage in dialogue aimed at improving not only your own well-being but by extension, sustaining the life of your relationship. There are some signs which denote that some urgent repairs are needed and are also qualified as bad habits, ongoing squabbles about the same issues is a recipe for feeling the wrath of stress which leads quite easily to lifestyle diseases.
Constantly disrespecting your partner through belittling utterances must be avoided at all costs as well as taking your partner for granted by treating him/her like an object as opposed to a human being. Maintaining a serious disposition throughout is another poor habit…relationships are tasteless without some sense of humour. And, not having meals together as a family is totally unacceptable. Spending too much time on your computer devices thereby reducing quality time needed for your relationship and family interaction should also be managed.
Whilst potentially bad habits may mean different things to different people, partners need to all times be sensitive and respectful towards each other particularly when it comes to “likes” and “dislikes.” Remember from the beginning, the hope was to work together towards futuristic developments.
Sandrine Rattan is a communications and branding consultant, author, empowerment builder and president of the International Women’s Resource Network (IWRN) Contact: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org, hotline: 283-0318