When is the last time you really felt loved? What did that look like? How did that make you feel?
Emotional needs are tightly woven with the feelings that are attached to being loved by the most significant people in our lives. These special bonds that we hold with others can either make us, or break us. California State University Fullerton shares that “there is an important difference between “I love you because I need you,” and “I need you because I love you.” Love based on neediness doesn’t usually come from a healthy place within us and will eventually smother the relationship.” Though more research is needed on determining the quality of a relationship as perceived by each person, generally speaking, individuals who work hard together to achieve a happy and healthy relationship often experience a sense of calm that can boast individual self-esteem and establish a quality connection.
However, it is important to keep in mind that not all emotional relationships are fully exclusive to romantic connections. Rather, they can include relationships with close friends, family members and our children. More specifically, to be emotionally fulfilled is to be acknowledged and accepted by others in the form of affirmation.
Let’s take a closer look at how to successfully maintain a healthy emotional connection.
Acknowledgement is the acceptance of one’s existence and contribution to a relationship in actioned or verbalized gratitude.
Example scenario: Your spouse takes out the trash after you had a long day at work though it is normally your household chore.
Example response: “Thank you SPOUSE for taking out the trash, I appreciate your help after such a long day at work.”
Acceptance is the action of being welcomed and received as enough as is.
Example scenario: Your daughter shares with you that she feels fat compared to the other kids at school.
Example response: “Sweetheart, everybody is so different. I love your _____ and for me that is enough.”
Affirmation is positive emotional support.
Example Scenario: Your friend tells you that he does not feel like an adequate father to his children.
Example response: “FRIEND, I have noticed you practicing ball with your son after a long day at work. I see your actions and I am certain that time means the world to your son.”
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– CASEY EDMONDS, CHC
Health Advisor | Email Casey