How To Fix Power Dynamics In Your Relationship
A healthy long-lasting relationship has balanced power dynamics.
If your power dynamics are out of whack for too long, the relationship will fall apart. Or even worse, you’ll stay trapped in a toxic relationship.
You may not have heard the term, but you can be sure that power dynamics play a crucial role in keeping you and your partner happy.
In this guide, you’ll learn what power dynamics are, how to identify if your power dynamics are healthy and how to fix a relationship with mismatched power dynamics.
‘Power dynamics’ is essentially a fancy term to describe the power within any personal relationship.
When there is a decision to make involving both people in the relationship, the person with more power will tend to get their way.
In a relationship with balanced power dynamics, couples will make decisions based on what’s best for the relationship to thrive. Naturally, that means both parties will get their way from time to time.
In unbalanced relationships, decisions are made based on what makes the more powerful person happy.
In extreme cases of a power imbalance, one person will agree to things that make them miserable in order to please their partner.
You might think you’d prefer to be the more powerful person in an unbalanced relationship, but most emotionally healthy women will quickly grow to resent you. Conflict will arise more often, leaving both of you miserable in the relationship, until one of you breaks it off.
A power imbalance is most likely to occur from one person being more afraid of the relationship ending.
That person becomes more likely to concede ground in disagreements, even at the expense of their own happiness.
For a power imbalance to cause a problem, it requires the more powerful person to take advantage of their partner’s weakness. This is a toxic thing to do, plus it’ll lead to the end of the relationship if it goes on long enough.
How can I spot a power imbalance in a relationship?
In a truly toxic couple, the more powerful person will gaslight their partner into believing it’s a balanced relationship.
The more powerful partner may rationalise this behaviour to themselves – and be convinced that nothing is wrong when their other half is secretly building more inner resentment towards them.
Ask yourself these questions to determine whether you’re in a balanced relationship or not.
If you answered ‘No’ to any of these questions, that’s a clear sign of unbalanced power dynamics within your relationship – and it should become clear who has more power too.
The 2-step strategy to avoid becoming the weak half of a couple is: be prepared to speak up if your partner oversteps one of your boundaries – and willing to walk away if she doesn’t fix the problem.
Yes, it’s reasonable to give her a warning and a second chance if she suggests or does something unacceptable.
But a lot of guys aren’t even willing to do that – and even more won’t follow through if she does overstep the boundary again.
The men who struggle with this tend to have a scarcity-based mindset when it comes to dating. They hate the thought of being single – and fear that they’ll never find a partner as good as the one they managed to lock down. So, they stay in a relationship where the woman wears the pants.
Ironically, in relationships where women hold the power, they tend to lose all respect and attraction for the man. So, she’ll most likely walk away or cheat on him even if he provides everything she could possibly want.
That’s why it’s recommended for men to learn how to be attractive to women in general, before settling into a monogamous relationship. The knowledge that you could replace your partner with someone equally good will naturally make it easier to stand up for yourself within the relationship.
If it’s your girlfriend or wife who has less power, this is much easier to fix. Simply take a few moments to consider her feelings when making decisions. Encourage her to speak up for herself. Help her to build her self-confidence. Make it clear you respect her opinions.
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About Joe Elvin Joe Elvin travels the world working remotely as a lifestyle writer and confidence coach. Throughout 2017, he filmed his entire dating life as part of a national television documentary in the UK. His new book 'The Camera Never Lies' details the brutal truths about dating and relationships learned from this experience. You can learn more about the book and download the first chapter for free by clicking here >>