Written by Heather Hans, Published byYourTango on December 19, 2017

Trying to control others isn't cute (or healthy).

Life is a school to grow your soul. The way you grow your soul is through relationships with yourself and others, by finding and giving joy. The greater your capacity to love yourself, the more you are able to love others and the further advanced your soul.

Love is the highest frequency, which means it is superior to other states, particularly with respect to health and power. Love heals; love creates; love is the most powerful force of all.

To develop unconditional love for yourself is to master the school of life. When you unconditionally love yourself, you uplift the world and everyone in your path. 

Throughout my work, I have found that when parents, teachers, or others try to control a child, even if it is well intended, it backfires. It puts the child in greater distress and causes both parties to spiral out of control. The reason is that trying to control others — even children — is a sign that you feel out of control.

It’s not fair or healthy to try to get your needs met by attempting to control others.

Doing so is the ultimate symptom of insecurity. Instead, by being true to yourself and focusing on your own growth and well-being, others respond to you in kind. You teach others how to treat you by the way you treat yourself.

We shall never strive to control others, but rather to control ourselves. Controlling oneself is the essence of personal mastery.

The greatest public figures in all disciplines and walks of life, such as Bruce Lee, Nelson Mandela, and Rosa Parks, mastered the art of self-control. It was their self-mastery that allowed them to influence others.

Assess each relationship in your life and decide its overall purpose. Do you seek a mate? A close friend? Someone who will support you in big life events? One person cannot meet all of your needs, nor is it healthy to be cloistered and forgo a variety of relationships in your life.

The closer a person is to your inner circle, the greater your needs in that relationship. You have more frequent and intimate interactions with one another, so you make a greater impact in each other’s lives. It’s important to be selective of your closest relationships.

Yet, no one will meet all your needs or please you all the time.

Needs also change over time. Young women often feel the need to have a child, while older women need a companion who has emotional depth gained from life experience.

You create your life experience. If you choose to be in a relationship with someone, it’s up to you to get what you need. Even if a relationship is a short-term experience that taught you to set better boundaries, see it as that, rather than viewing yourself as a victim. Every relationship helps you move closer to a better one.

If you want to seek a satisfying long-term relationship and how to get what you need in a relationship, follow these 10 steps:

1. Know what you need.

Similar to a designated destination on a map, knowing your endpoint is how you get there. Knowledge of your needs can take time and experience, especially in intimate relationships.

One of the ways we discover what we need is by the absence of it in our past relationships.

2. Make sure that the person with whom you choose to be in a relationship has the ability and desire to meet your needs.

If you seek a romantic relationship, determine your top five needs and only accept a person who meets these needs, to begin with. If not, you’re setting yourself up for insanity!

3. Be clear about the purpose of the relationship.

The overall purpose of every relationship is to increase your capacity to love. Beyond that, make sure you can articulate the main reasons you’d like the relationship in your life.

4. Find something outside of the relationship that means a lot to both of you and focus on it together.

This shared focus is something greater than you, individually. It could be your child, your religion, a sport or activity, a charity, etc.

5. Say a prayer of gratitude every time the other person meets your needs.

Doing so lifts your spirit and attracts more of the same.

6. Pick your top three favorite qualities of the other person and seek them out regularly.

Rather than focusing on their frustrating habits, milk them for their wonderful qualities!

For example, if one of their best qualities is their sense of humor, get them talking about a funny topic.

7. Notice your good fortune when the other person goes above and beyond meeting your needs.

Doing so expands your limited beliefs about them, as well as increases your ability to receive love. The more love you allow yourself to receive, the more love the universe can deliver.

8. Focus on yourself.

When you find yourself obsessing or trying to control the other person, bring the focus back to yourself, your goals, and making yourself happy.

9. Set personal boundaries to avoid being triggered by the other person.

Avoid placing yourself in situations with that person that you know upset you. All humans have quirks and personality deficiencies. Create a safe place for yourself and don’t take their behavior personally.

10. Focus on your weaknesses too.

If you focus on the other person’s shortcomings, make sure you spend an equal amount of energy focused on your own weaknesses. This step brings you out of ego and into unity.

It also helps you to stop focusing on others to distract you from your own pain and issues.

Heather Hans, LCSW, MBA is a Public Speaker, Licensed Psychotherapist, Intuitive Coach, Holistic Healer and author of The Heart of Self-Love. To inquire about booking Heather for a private session or to speak at your event, visit her website.