How to Balance Your Relationship

Are you a good deal; too much of a good thing?

Do you feel loved for what you do for your partner rather than for who you are?

If this describes you, you might feel unloved and taken for granted in your relationship. Some of the possible reasons for this may be that:

  1. Many of the things you do are unappreciated by your partner.
  2. What you do for your partner far outweighs what you receive in return.
  3. You associate love with doing good things rather than being enjoyable and loveable as is.
  4. You are exhausted and resentful because you believe it’s better to give than to receive.
  5. Your identity is wrapped up in doing good things, so when you stop you feel bad.
  6. You outshine your partner when it comes to getting things done, making feel insecure.


If you grew up in a family where you were ignored, mistreated or relied upon to take care of your family while you were still very young, you might be what I refer to as a good deal.

When you constantly do good things for your partner your heart is naturally somewhat closed.

Continuously doing for your partner doesn’t take into account that love is always a two-way street. In order for love to flow and for you to feel loved you must receive love as often as you give it. This is an open-hearted stance, allowing love to flow out from you and in to you.

Let’s take a look at how to fix the 6 factors that often lead to you feeling taken for granted:

  1. To gain greater appreciation from your partner, do only those things that you desire to do and genuinely have the energy to give. This is called having a strong YES and a strong NO.
  2. You don’t want to play tit for tat in your relationship, but if you are doing far more than your partner is you are likely building resentment. To right the balance, start doing more for yourself. You should never do more than you are receiving as it will upset your relationship equilibrium. This is different than pulling back in anger.
  3. It’s hard to feel lovable when you do so much because you will naturally associate the reason you’re loved with what you do. Trust that you are lovable, desirable and important as is. It’s you personality, interests, sense of humor and perspective that make you attractive and worthy of love. Focus on building a life filled with self care and self love.
  4. Love is to be shared between you and your partner. If you give so much your partner won’t even try to compete with you. Allow your partner to give to you. Look for ways to appreciate even the smallest things your partner does for you. Perhaps your partner gives love differently than you do. Thank your partner for everything you receive and make it a rule to to say Yes every time your partner asks if they can help, even if it seems inconvenient or silly.
  5. If your identity is tied up in what you do you might be like the energizer bunny. You keep going and going. Allow yourself to relax, be creative and have fun. Who you are and the reason you are lovable is inside of you. Take some time to discover what your partner already sees about you that makes you so wonderful. This will be challenging as the hardest person to give to is yourself, but also the most important person. Self love isn’t selfish, it simply allows you to have more to give to those you love and count on you.
  6. If you’re a bit of a superhero, you might have high standards and a bit of perfectionism. Allow yourself to relax and see that you don’t have all the answers. We all need a little help. It is an act of courage and a true strength to be able to ask for help when you need it. Not in a desperate way, but in a humble and gracious way. This is an example of learning to be soft and vulnerable on the outside with a core of solid, inner strength.

Although your partner might like a good deal, what you and your partner didn’t bargain for was the partially closed heart that comes along with this way of being. Open your heart to receive more and start doing less and watch your relationship flourish.


Susan Blackburn

Susan Blackburn

About Susan Blackburn:

Susan Blackburn, M.A., C.Psych. is a Registered Psychologist, Psychotherapist, Counsellor & Therapist in Toronto at Yonge Eglinton, a Published Author and a guest Relationship Expert on radio and television.

Susan enjoys working with people to enhance the quality of their lives. Her collaborative psychotherapy and counselling approach offers clients effective tools and strategies to increase happiness, manage stress, find balance, improve confidence, embrace self care and focus on the positive so that they can relax and enjoy life.

Services are covered under most extended health benefits and workplace insurance plans requiring clients be seen by a Registered Psychologist through her registration with the College of Psychologists of Ontario.

Susan is the owner of Susan Blackburn Psychology a boutique therapy private practice located in midtown Toronto at Yonge and Eglinton.

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