I have decided to make Tuesdays a day for “Ask me Anything” on my social media, therefore last Tuesday I have received a question from a dear lady who asked “How to make your partner to do anything for you?”, at first I wasn’t sure if she was joking, or if she was serious. Understanding the fact that most of our jokes hold some sort of truth in them, I’ve decided to take it seriously and answer it properly.
As a woman I understand that we want our partners to be careful and attentive to our needs therefore to our requests. I’d first like to highlight that it’s extremely important for me personally whether my partner, my friends, my family, or even my valuable community to have the freedom to be able to say NO to the things that are not aligned with their wants, otherwise I believe I’ll be creating nothing but some ticking bombs around me.
Therefore I have twisted that question into “How can I communicate my needs, therefore my requests with anyone around, especially my partner?” decorating it with ownership and responsibility.
This is how I’d coach it:
1-UNDERSTAND YOUR OWN NEED:
All our emotions are connected to our met and unmet needs, therefore if we are expecting something from someone, it is because we have hidden need such as connection, love, support, space and so on.. Often times we fail to have our needs fulfilled, simply because we communicate instead that what we don’t need or want, and end up feeling disappointed. A great example of that would be telling my husband “I’m tired”, at this point he and I both have no idea what I want, what I could be needing are many, such as a shower, some time alone, sleep, etc.. but what often happens is that I expect my partner to know what I most probably haven’t figured out myself, and I’m sure you can guess what happens next.. In this case it would be much fulfilling for both parties, if I communicate with him instead saying “I feel very tired, therefore I’d like an hour alone with myself, do you think you can support me with that?” making sure I respect whether his answer is a “Yes” or a “No”.
I’ve read somewhere that “A man is already halfway in love with any woman who listens to him.” by Brendan Francis, I’m confident that this quote applies to both men and women equally. This doesn’t need much explanation because it’s clear that it’s very hard to not fulfill someone’s needs when this person is fully attentive and caring towards us.
I love receiving gifts, and it happened that gifts don’t mean much to my husband, at the beginning I was bothered, when I dived deeper to understand what is my need by expecting gifts, I’ve discovered it was because I wanted to feel loved and appreciated, bringing me to realize that he was giving me that exact same love and appreciation in a different way, such as spending quality time with me, taking me out for lunch and so on, as if he was communicating it in a different language that I didn’t pay attention to. The other even bigger realization would be that the most person who can satisfy my need is ME (now I buy myself gifts once in a while).
I don’t know about you, but I’m at a point in my life where I like transparent communication first with myself, therefore with others, it’s not about telling the person what to do, but it’s more about communicating feelings, needs and therefore making requests, paying attention that a YES has no meaning, unless the person is capable to say NO.
This above is partially what I coach, if you’re having challenging communication with your own self and others, and all you need is some tools, do reach out.