Bettering Yourself

How to be with a Highly Independent Person

Relationship or not, these 3 steps contain valuable insights ANYONE can take away to be a self-reliant person. I had a friend awhile back who inspired this piece (that I actually wrote in 2020 on my Contena page) because the majority of our conversations seemed to revolve around relationships and after a while I had to challenge that. Maybe your partner doesn’t have to be your everything…This is how to be with a highly independent person.

couple holding hands on beach
Photo by Asad Photo Maldives

Being with an Independent Person

I thought I was independent until I met my current partner. He grew up learning on his own, keeping to himself and his interests. He was involved in some team sports, but I’ve noticed the majority of his adult activities are single focused like surfing, snowboarding, and writing guitar solos. So, what I learned very quickly is that he’s okay on his own; he doesn’t need me.

And that’s fine, I thought, no big deal I don’t need him either. But the bigger component I realized (and tried to avoid realizing) is that I am not his number one priority. Maybe not even his second. That hurt at first.

Someone with big dreams won’t let the love of their life get in the way of those. Say what?!

I had never encountered this idea before. My friends and I would always talk about boys and relationships because that’s what was most exciting at the time. And maybe for some people it is, but I realized as I grew older, my focus transitioned to topics like career, building a business, investments, goals, cars, travel, experiences, etc.

So, what followed the introduction of this idea? The first out of three steps to being with a highly independent person.

1. Acceptance

Throw your hands in the air and say, “I accept that you don’t need me!” By giving up control of what you think someone needs allows them to be who they are. You would want the same for yourself, right? I can’t dictate his life because then I would take away his desire for me. One of the monumental things to understand in the process of acceptance is although they don’t need you, they’re with you because they want you. This is something to find comfort in.

girl throwing her hands in the air
Photo by Garon Piceli

After you’ve accepted the situation, you can move on to the second step.

2. Date Yourself

Self-love at its finest! Dating yourself is the best way to get in touch with how you like to be treated and learn how to be a better version of yourself. No one knows you better so take yourself out to fancy restaurants and treat yourself to healthy habits or even get a professional makeover (all within financial means, of course).

By recognizing you’re amazing all by your lonesome, you turn yourself into your number one priority. This is most crucial because you’re comfortable being somewhat alone and you’re getting to a place where guess what? You don’t need anyone but you.

One thing to note is you can 100% do this in a relationship. In your free time, date yourself with what you love to do, but not with anyone else. Afterwards, make sure to audit what you did and how you felt because reflecting on positive solitary emotions is good for your mental health.

Also note that although you can love yourself while in a relationship, you may find your goals become different than your partner’s. This is okay! If you can manage expectations in relationships (read this next), then you can still support each other independently. If you find your partner doesn’t support you and your dreams, it’s time to become your own highly independent person without them holding you back. Just imagine if you stayed in that relationship and weren’t able to fulfill your dreams…what would that limited life look like?

independent person on hill
Photo by Suliman Sallehi

Finally, step three.

3. Connect with Your Partner

Once you’ve learned to love yourself first and understand who you are, then you can talk freely with your lover! Talk about the gestures you want them to do more based on dating yourself and ask the same about them. Talk about your days and nights and enjoy their company in a new light. Becoming self-aware about how you feel now versus then is an amazing approach to happiness.

Another cool factor in this process, no matter how long it takes, is that you’ve separated any dependence you had in the relationship. Now, you will begin to realize the other person is there as an addition to your life, a sweetness to the life you’re already enjoying.

All in all, enjoy the “extra” your person gives you. Whether that’s laughing till you pee, their attractive smolder face, the intelligent conversations you have, or the good times in bed. It all adds to your own happiness. And no matter what happens, you have this underlying confidence in yourself where you know you’ll be okay.

couple at a picnic
Photo by Viktoria Slowikowska

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Claudia Grimm
Writer and nature lover, I'm a curious gal wanting to share what I've learned in personal and environmental growth. What have I realized the most? Small steps make big impacts!

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