Self-Worth, Relationships and Sex

Have you ever felt caught in a mode of hustling or negotiating for your self-worth? Do you ever feel like no matter how much you give to others, especially your partner, it’s never enough?

Over the last two decades, Licensed Clinical Psychologist Dr. Alexandra H. Solomon has become one of today’s most trusted voices in the world of relationships and her work on Relational Self-Awareness has reached millions of people around the world. 

What is Relational Self-Awareness? Relational self-awareness is the idea that the healthiest foundation for intimate partnership is an ongoing, curious, and passionate relationship with the self.

Shame and blame can be detrimental to any kind of relationship, especially romantic relationships…

Shame might show up as something like: “I’m too broken… My trauma is too big… I’m not enough…”

Blame might show up as something like: “If you didn’t have that characteristic or issue, we wouldn’t be having this problem.”

But there’s no one to blame and there is no use in shaming yourself. 

When you start to take note of the patterns and the unique dance between you and your partner, or as Dr. Alexandra calls it, the Golden Equation of Love (“my stuff + your stuff = our stuff”), your relationship will grow to be much healthier, passionate, stable, and loving. 

Through relational self-awareness, Dr. Alexandra is inviting people just like you into that perspective and providing tools for how to return to that perspective when you lose hold of it.

What if my partner and I get into an argument or disagreement? Dr. Alexandra recommends this strategy for resolving conflict: Next time you’re having a conflict with your partner, stop and walk away from each other, sit down, and write down the story of the conflict from the perspective of a neutral third party who loves you both very much.

This practice forces the mind and heart into a more compassionate, relational stance, thus improving relationship satisfaction.

Behind every complaint or irritating frustration is an unmet need. 

When you have a healthy relationship with yourself and you know how to self-soothe and be there for yourself, it’s much easier to have your needs met. When your needs aren’t met, try doing some self-reflection, identify your needs, and lovingly communicate them to yourself and your partner. Trust me, mountains will be moved when this becomes a habitual practice!

Remember, you don’t need a relationship or a ring to affirm you or to prove your self-worth.

The self-worth journey is all about learning a different way of being with yourself. It’s not something you check off your to-do list, it’s a continual journey of navigating your life. 

To have a healthy relationship with yourself means that when you encounter challenging situations, you don’t expect perfection from yourself. Instead, you give yourself grace and figure out how to prepare or gather your resources so you can support yourself through this difficult time. We’re humans. Humans have difficulties sometimes and we have the power to accommodate for that.

It’s time to take your sexy back, ladies!

The significance of self-worth gets multiplied when we start talking about sex and sexuality. Dr. Alexandra emphasizes the importance of establishing boundaries, becoming aware of your needs, and identifying whether or not you feel safe and satisfied during sexual interactions. If you know what makes you feel good and can communicate that, the rewards are profound. That may sound obvious to you, but our culture has done a great job of making women feel like they should be passive during sex and shouldn’t explore and talk about their sexual desires. 

Have you explored your body and your worthiness lately? What might be blocking your pleasure? 

If we are hustling for worthiness during sexual intimacy, we’re focused on performing. When we’re performing, we’re not able to focus on the pleasure and connection between ourselves and our partner.

Through mindfulness, exploration of the self, and stepping out into your self-worth journey, I know you can reach the most mind-blowing, life-altering, self-affirming bliss you’ve ever experienced in a romantic relationship. Just remember, it all starts with the self.

About Dr. Alexandra H. Solomon:

Over the last two decades, Dr. Alexandra H. Solomon has become one of today’s most trusted voices in the world of relationships, and her work on Relational Self-Awareness has reached millions of people around the world. Dr. Solomon is a licensed clinical psychologist at The Family Institute at Northwestern University, and she is on faculty in the School of Education and Social Policy at Northwestern University where she teaches the internationally renowned course, Building Loving and Lasting Relationships: Marriage 101. In addition to writing articles and chapters for leading academic journals and books in the field of marriage and family, she is the author of two bestselling books, Loving Bravely and Taking Sexy Back. Dr. Solomon regularly presents to diverse groups that include the United States Military Academy at West Point and Microsoft, and she is frequently asked to talk about relationships with media outlets like The Today Show, O Magazine, The Atlantic, Vogue, and Scientific American.

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