Your relationship with your partner is easily one of the most important relationships in your life. Your partner, whether you guys are married or not, is someone that you choose to spend your time with and you’ve picked to share your life with. Sometimes when you’re with someone, it can be hard to take time to work on your mental health. You’re juggling a job or school (and sometimes both), relationships with your family and friends, and even finding time to eat or clean your house can be overwhelming. Throw in the need to work on your mental health and it’s easy to see how things can fall to the wayside.
When we invite someone into our lives to share space with, it’s possible that the relationship makes us feel so great that we don’t feel the need to work on our mental health. Some people may feel that the relationship in all of its glory has fixed the problems that were there prior to the relationship starting. However, it’s important to remember to take time and focus on ourselves and our health. Getting lost in a relationship is not the answer to any mental health struggles you may be facing.
Putting yourself and your mental health first is not neglecting your relationship. Think of your relationship like a car. While it runs well most of the time, we still need to take time to get regular oil changes and engine tune ups and other things that seem pointless and expensive when we’re doing them. They’re not pointless, because without them the car doesn’t
run correctly. The same can be said for taking care of your mental health. Taking the time to go to therapy and practice your skills outside of the therapy hour is important for regular self maintenance.
Let’s go back to our car analogy. Imagine you don’t get regular oil changes or tune ups for a long time. Your car runs fine, so why bother? Then suddenly you’re stranded on the side of the highway because you’re 10,000 miles past the time for your oil change and you’ve destroyed your engine. In the long run, taking the time to get an oil change would have saved you a lot of money and time. Plus the stress of having to fix your car that you relied on.
Your mental health is just as important as the relationship in your life. Taking care of yourself even in the times that you feel happy and well-adjusted can save you a lot of stress and worry for moments when things don’t feel so great. If your relationship hits a bump in the road, are you prepared to fix that bump without it impacting your mental health?
If your car needs regular maintenance to run correctly, it’s okay if you do too. Our goal as therapists is to eventually see you graduate from therapy through gradual changes in frequency. This means that we might change your sessions from weekly to bi-weekly and eventually to monthly. Interestingly enough, we call this maintenance stage. Regular check-ins with your therapist are important to maintain a healthy mind and healthy relationship.
Looking for a therapist to help you navigate through issues when you’ve hit a bump in the road? The therapists at Mindsight are here to help! Regardless of what you’re going through, we have a therapist that will work with you to help get you to that maintenance stage.
Shelby Case is a new therapist at Mindsight Louisville! Shelby's favorite things include spending time with her animals and her spouse, watching television (currently they are watching Big Brother), and taking road trips. When she isn't providing therapy to clients, she can be found playing video games (her favorite is The Sims 4) or spending too much money at a thrift store. Shelby's favorite color is green and her guilty pleasure is reality TV shows.
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