If you ask people what the most important thing is in a relationship, you’ll get a myriad of answers — big ones being trust, communication, respect, etc. — but all of the answers really tie back to one singular factor.
And it’s: Emotional stability and emotional self-sufficiency.
Without it, there effectively is no relationship. With it, everything else will naturally follow.
I’ve written about this before — in fact, “emotional stability” is number one on my own list, and one of only three things I absolutely need in a partner. Emotional stability is the sexiest thing you can do.
And I’m not alone in saying this — many people agree on this being the number one most important thing.
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Mark Manson calls it “people who manage their insecurities well” or “the ability to see one’s own flaws and be accountable for them.”
Karen Salmansohn called it “good character values” — i.e., “not a psychopath” (and then includes a list of “psychopath” characteristics — thanks, Karen.)
Leo Babauta of Zen Habits uses the term “emotionally self-reliant,” saying, “We look for happiness from others, but this is an unreliable source of happiness… And here’s the thing: it’s not their job to fill our emotional needs.”
Zaid Dahhaj describes emotional self-sufficiency as “your relationship with yourself,” which is the same thing.
He goes on to say, “If you do not love yourself entirely and actively ensure your own needs are met, you will find it difficult to do the same for others.”
And when we talk about “actively ensuring your own needs are met,” we do not mean “actively asking others to meet them.” We mean “actively working to meet them yourself.”