THESCHOLARLYMIND.COM IS A PARTICIPANT IN THE AMAZON SERVICES LLC ASSOCIATES PROGRAM, AN AFFILIATE ADVERTISING PROGRAM DESIGNED TO PROVIDE A MEANS FOR SITES TO EARN A COMMISION BY ADVERTISING AND LINKING TO AMAZON.COM.
The importance of them
Throughout history, humans used relationships as a means of survival. It is believed that humans in Palaeolithic societies usually lived in small bands of around 25 people, which were essentially their life long companions.
Exclusion from the band meant that survival was quite harsh and excluded members became vulnerable, which allowed predators and the harshness of the land to have their way.
However, those that remained in these bands reaped significant benefits throughout their life until death. The most notable benefit at the time was a greater chance of survival, as more people meant that hunting and gathering; animals, fruit etc. were a lot more efficient, as each person within the band was given a specific task allowing for maximum productive efforts with as little energy expenditure as possible.
Not to say that every attempt at hunting had been successful but rather a greater number of people equate to a higher chance of achieving a kill and thus allowing these humans to eat and live for another day.
In relation to the less extreme modern-day, relationships still play an integral role in achieving a variety of other benefits beyond merely surviving.
Health benefits such as; decreased stress, decreased loneliness, improved memory and a potentially longer lifespan, as well as the fostering of creativity, as greater social interactions result in potentially greater experiences, which equates to a higher chance of discovering new found ideas through the act of constantly engaging in social intercourse are all significant benefits that occur as a bi-product of creating strong relationships.
A great bond
To many people, the fondness between two or more individuals is enough to imply a relationship without the need for a verbal contract. This is fine. However, what does it mean to have a bond? to love one another? to trust one another? or to be able to rely on someone independent from yourself?
It is all these things. All these qualities form a foundation for a strong bond and increase the longevity of a relationship. On the other hand, even though these qualities are needed for a strong bond, there is one that stands out above the rest and that is self-sacrifice.
Self-sacrifice can be portrayed in many ways, whether it is through sacrificing money for the other person within the relationship to gain benefit from or simply sacrifice ones time in order to aid the other person in an endeavour which may benefit them.
The only caveat to this type of relationship is trying to obtain these great qualities from the other person who is involved in the relationship you’re trying to strengthen.
These qualities aren’t promised to you, neither is the longevity of the relationship. What you can do, however, is build as much rapport as possible with the other person through common interests and goals in the hopes of cementing your relationship, be it a platonic or a romantic one.
A step forward with caution
One thing to remember is that you should not force yourself to be in a relationship. As a society, we have advanced to the point where it isn’t a necessity to have a romantic relationship per se, as the needs for companionship can be satisfied through the act of engaging with friends whom you are in a platonic relationship with, as well as spending more time with family. Often times we cling on to someone who we think we need and use them as an excuse to not be independent.
Remember, you are all that you need, allowing yourself to be dependant on someone else purely for the idea of satisfying constant bursts of desire isn’t a healthy way to live. It becomes almost consuming until it’s nothing but mere infatuation.
Friendly reminder, those relationships do not last. Instead, practice being single, learn how to enjoy being alone, as being alone will allow you to develop yourself as a person and eventually, through developing healthy habits and a passion for knowledge, you will reach a point at which you no longer need someone else, but rather you will have everything that you need.
What’s more is that you will be in a better position, not of need, as it is to say that you can not live without, but of want, as it means that you already have all that you need.
Therefore you are in a much better state both mentally and, hopefully, physically to choose from the vast amount of potential partners in this world and enjoy the privilege of being with someone.
However, it’s also important to remember that you shouldn’t constantly seek relationships to the point of exhaustion. To seek out a relationship is nothing bad but when it reaches the point of showing less desirable characteristics such as; desperation or even worse, your willingness to allow random people into your life without caution and wearing your heart on your sleeve, choosing to be vulnerable to anyone that cares to listen.
Don’t do this, instead allow yourself to be open to those who have a genuine interest in you, while also being aware of your naivety. As well as being cautious remind yourself not to try too hard or too much, as this will result in emotional fatigue, which can contribute to feeling jaded, unenthusiastic, towards the idea of love.
The beauty in repetition
Another thing to remember, whether or not you’re ready for a relationship, is that you are not entitled to a relationship no matter how much you have developed as a person.
A relationship is a privilege to have. It is also something to master. You may fail many times in your pursuit of love, but these failures will act as a learning opportunity, an opportunity you can choose; either to learn from or forget about.
After all, as much as we hate to admit it, and most of us will not realise it until we are with that special someone, failure is half of the satisfaction.
Once you’ve gone through the amount of non-compatible people in your life, to find that person who you know is thinking about you, has your back in any situation and your best interest at heart is extremely rewarding, all your efforts will seem to have paid off and hopefully, this time, it’ll stay like that.
Most of you could say “well if that’s the case I don’t need anyone because I have my parents” or “I have my friends” and as comforting as that thought is, it’s also important that you extend the pathways of whom you love; through a significant other and potentially children of your own if you desire them.
This will allow you to experience new, more profound ways to love, which may alter your idea of love and allow you to articulate that love in more meaningful ways, such as; the sacrifice of your own time in order to work for the benefit of your children. Something which many parents do.
What you can also do is allow yourself to love and give it as much effort as you hope to receive. Remember, a relationship works both ways, to receive you must give; love, time, effort etc.
Despite that, if they do not wish to reciprocate those things to you after you have brought up your concerns regarding the former, then it is in your best interest to leave that relationship, as it serves you no purpose but a means to waste valuable energy.
The only exception to this is children. As innocent as they are it was your conscious choice to bring them into this world and as a result, they owe you nothing and at the very least you owe it to them to love them regardless and in return, they may show gratitude and love towards you.
At the same time, you shouldn’t allow yourself to stress too much and you should permit yourself to find ease and comfort in another person, such as your partner, knowing that you’ve essentially chosen the best person for you out of other potential love interests.
Fulfilment in non-judgement
Whatever form of relationship, whatever you feel is important and an utmost necessity with regards to qualities a person should have within a relationship they may all be essential for growth. That is assuming that these qualities are all constructive and positively benefits those who are within a relationship.
To have the option to confide in someone, to be able to receive constructive criticism and learn from your mistakes without the fear of humiliation and rejection is an important support system, one which every individual should have in their lifetime.
However, always keep in mind that it may not be the best thing for you in the current moment and that later on in your life it may be a much better decision to be in a relationship.
It’s all really dependant on your circumstance, as a person you know your intentions better than anyone, most of the time. As humans, we aren’t perfect so it’s also important to obtain the view of someone very close but also very unbiased towards you.
If that person has a view which mirrors your own about yourself, in regards to a relationship and whether or not you’re ready, then do what you feel is right.
If both you and that person feel that you are ready then go for it, but even if one of you is unsure then take a step back and think about what you have to improve on, such as; improving your confidence or your communication skills.
Even something like perfecting your own craft, whether you’re a writer, artist, photographer etc, can add value to your life and make you a more confident person, slowly but surely, you’ll get there eventually.
A race for love
Now, you as a person have control over your choices. As empowering as that may be it is important to choose the right ones. It is also, if not, more important for women. This is because of one reason in particular and that is wanting children.
After puberty, until a woman’s late 20’s fertility is at its peak. This peak starts to decline after the age of 30 and decreases rapidly after the age of 35. That being said, it becomes increasingly harder for women to become pregnant, as they increase in age .
If you are a woman know this, you deserve to be loved no matter how old you are, just remember that if you do want children in the foreseeable future, try to plan for it.
If that means to work harder on yourself now so that you’re ready for a relationship later on which can aid in the upbringing of a child, then put more time into bettering yourself, you owe yourself, not just as a woman but as a person, to respect yourself through improvement and self-love.
If you are someone above the age of 35 that’s fine. Remember that there are alternatives such as; in-vitro fertilization (IVF), which may help you to conceive, but from one human being to another, the chances of success are very slim and costly. Personally, I would never wish that amount of hardship on anyone.
However, at the end of the day, if it is an option for you and you are willing to take the risk then try to discuss it with those close to you, as they care for your well-fare the most, and proceed from there. The final say will always be yours.
On the other hand, you may not even want children and if that’s the case go out and do the things that make you happy. Regardless, love will come once you learn to love yourself.
As always I hope that you’ve gained some guidance and something of value from this post. Feel free to email or message me on social media regarding any topics you may want me to discuss on my next blog post. Until next time, keep questioning, keep being contemplative and always stay conscious.