10 easy ways to respect yourself in a relationship

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Whether you believe in love at first sight or taking a closer look, whether you’re in a long term relationship or something that is days old, there has to be respect involved. Yes, it’s true that being in a relationship calls for mutual respect and understanding, but at the core of it all, you must respect yourself.

I’ve heard horror tales of women letting their partners step all over them because they’re afraid of ending up alone. Hello, girlfriend! Wake up! There’s a whole world of men out there and if you think that the loser who’s pushing you around is your best option, then maybe you really deserve to be with him. It all boils down to taking a look at yourself and evaluating your self worth.

1. Let your voice be heard

Don’t let your man dictate the terms of your relationship. You’re not an animal to be strung along. Sure, relationships are all about compromise, but be sure that there is a balance and that it’s not just you doing all the compromising.

2. Spend time with your friends

Set aside several days a month for your friends. Whether it’s a one-on-one brunch with your bestie or cocktails on ladies night, be sure to respect yourself enough to nurture relationships other than the one that you share with your man.

3. Spend time alone

Besides spending time with your friends, you also have to carve out time to spend alone. Sometimes, all you need is a little space to clear your head and center yourself. Don’t let anyone intrude on your private time. If you can’t disappear for a day, commandeer the living room for several hours and do your own thing. Don’t let him venture in until you’re ready.

4. Be independent

Respect yourself enough to make your own money and decisions. Set personal goals, have your own circle of friends and take the liberty to be an independent woman. You’ll find that the more independent you are, the more power you’ll have in the relationship.

5. Make time for your hobbies

A problem that most women face when they enter into a relationship is that they don’t have enough time to do things for themselves. Whether it’s sitting at a café alone to people watch or spending the afternoon getting your nails and eyebrows done, don’t neglect the things you enjoy doing just because you have a man to ‘look after.’

6. Don’t do something you don’t want to

Whether it’s indulging in S&M, anal sex or lying for him, don’t do anything you’re not comfortable doing. Of course, with that being said, don’t restrict yourself to your bubble and be sure to try new things that he wants to introduce you to.

7. Set down rules

Another way to respect yourself in a relationship is to set down some ground rules. Of course, there’s no need to set anything in stone but be sure that both parties are aware of the dos and don’ts. For example, be clear about the consequences of infidelity and highlight how important it is to practice mutual respect for one another.

8. Look good

Another way to respect yourself in a relationship is to never let yourself go. Take pride in looking good not just for your man but for yourself. Exercise, eat right and don’t neglect hygiene. No harm ever came to anyone who overindulged in yoga and made it for her monthly wax appointments.

9. Stop comparing your relationship

I know someone who got dumped soon after she made the move to Finland to be with a man she only knew for 5 months. Her Facebook updates were all rainbows and butterflies but I knew she was dying inside. The thing is, she displayed a deliriously happy image of herself and her relationship to the whole world that anyone who didn’t know the real story would undoubtedly be jealous.

10. Accept who you are

No matter what, don’t let your man try to change you, unless of course, it’s to become a better person. If you truly believe in something, don’t let love sway you. If you love doing something, don’t let him stop you.

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