We all have insecurities — all of us. There is at least one thing that we feel insecure about in our lives. It may be a relationship; it may be our self-image; it may be our intelligence or capability in a certain skill. We may even have more than one insecurity.
But today, we’re going to focus on insecurities in a relationship. These insecurities can stem from previous negative experiences, social anxiety, fear of rejection, or neglect or mistreatment in other relationships. Typically, however, these insecurities are based on a lack of self-confidence.
Here, we’ll dive into some common signs of insecurity in relationships and how you can constructively cope with these insecurities — rather than sabotaging your relationship by constantly alienating yourself or your partner from it.
Signs of Insecurity
Realistically, insecurity can present itself in a variety of ways. But, in a relationship, there are a few behaviors that you can typically expect to appear if one (or multiple) of the people in the relationship are feeling insecure. These are listed below.
The first telltale sign of insecurity in a relationship is jealousy. Now, a little bit of jealousy is a common emotion for all of us. Whether someone has a cooler computer, car, or house than us, or we see someone living their best life being themselves in a way we wish we could. But, when that jealousy is constantly present in your relationship — when you are jealous of all of the other people in your partner’s life and hate them simply because they have your partner’s attention when you do not — well, that’s a bad sign.
You may constantly question your partner’s actions or find yourself unable to take them at their word. As a result, you may begin worrying about whether or not your partner will leave you for someone else and begin spying or checking up on them. The simple truth is that jealousy damages any type of relationship — whether romantic, platonic, or even familial.
This next behavior goes hand and hand with jealousy. When we feel jealous (especially of someone else “stealing” our partner’s attention away from us), we may try to get that attention back. Unfortunately, sometimes the way that we go about capturing this attention is in all the wrong ways. We may start fishing for compliments, reading too much into our partner’s every action, trying to do everything together, or picking fights just to get attention.
Don’t get us wrong, all couples argue sometimes. You’re never going to agree on everything, and there may be times when one or both of you lose your temper and get into it. But, if you and your partner are always arguing, you’re not communicating healthily. Healthy communication can include arguing, as most of us tend to raise our voices when we feel unheard or even if we have strong feelings about something.
But unhealthy arguments are those that come up when you are not interested in solving the issue. These arguments typically stem from insecurity in your relationship and may come from a place of fear that your partner may leave if you do actually communicate with them and explain what you are feeling.
Lack of Trust
Behaviors like checking up on your partner, verifying things multiple times rather than simply believing them the first time, or even spying on their private conversations all display a lack of trust. This lack of trust usually stems from a feeling of insecurity in your relationship. You may feel that your partner is cheating on you, lying to you, or even going to leave you. This type of insecurity can be extremely challenging to deal with and overcome, but not trusting your partner is not the answer.
Below we’ll talk about some ways you can cope with your insecurities in a healthy and productive way — rather than introducing further stress and conflict into your relationship by reading their text messages when they go to sleep.
How to Cope with Insecurity in Your Relationship
Now, without further ado, here are some things you can do to handle your insecurities more productively.
As we mentioned earlier, the cause for most insecurities is a lack of self-confidence or self-love. So, if you want to overcome these insecurities, you need to show yourself the love you want. One way to improve your self-image and lessen insecurities is to change how you talk to yourself. Many of us have a very negative inner voice that constantly remarks on the things that we do wrong in a situation.
So, try flipping this little inner critic on its head. When you notice that you are thinking negatively about yourself, catch the thought, and respond to it by listing two things that you are doing that are positive right at that moment.
For example, if your inner critic is saying ‘you failed to make that Pinterest salmon recipe that says “super easy” because you’re a terrible cook’ you can recognize this thought and respond by reminding yourself that you tried something new that was outside of your normal comfort zone and you learned something new about cooking that you didn’t already know — like that you should actually heat the pan before putting the fish into so it actually gets that Instagram-worthy sear on the outside before it overcooks.
Knowing the particular situations that bring up your insecurities can be a great way to start working on them. Sometimes we get blindsided by feelings of insecurity when we don’t expect it, but if we can recognize when these feelings are coming up, we can better prepare ourselves for when these feelings arise. This can help you to discover which areas you need to work on and where you can focus your attention.
Keeping a journal can be a good way to recognize these feelings of insecurity and find patterns of what causes them.
Check-in with Your Needs (and Your Partner’s Needs)
A lot of times, feelings of insecurity rise when we are not getting what we need from our relationship. So, take some time to discuss your needs with your partner, and make sure to listen to their needs as well! If you notice that there are things that you and your partner can work on together to ensure that both of you are getting what you need, then that is something that you can both work on together.
More often than not, this can help you become closer to your partner because it helps you better understand each other and your individual needs and desires.
We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again. Good communication is key to a healthy relationship. We know it can feel awkward to sit down and talk about what you aren’t getting from your partner, but this can be a crucial part of addressing the root cause of your insecurities and helping you and your partner to get closer.
Consider Talking to a Therapist
When we are insecure in a relationship, we can fall into a negative spiral of undervaluing ourselves and continually creating an imbalance in our relationships because we are constantly focused on what our partner is not giving us or what we can give to our partner to convince them that we are “good enough” for them to stay with us.
This can be a rough cycle to break, and sometimes you need an extra hand to get out of it. If you think that you’d benefit from an outside perspective to help you overcome your insecurities, you may benefit from speaking to a therapist. Therapists are trained professionals who can help you find the best ways to cope with and overcome your insecurities.
So, if you are looking for additional guidance on overcoming your insecurities, please do not hesitate to reach out to us at Love Heal Grow.