Compromise Isn't Always Relationship Happiness

In a relationship. In life.

Hi fellow beings!

It’s another Friday. Another end to the week (or start to the weekend?).

I’m off to Seattle today. Or rather, tomorrow, since I will be on an airplane when this email sends out. I’m currently typing this out on a Thursday. Oh, the concept of time.

I’ll be heading up to the Emerald City (why is it called that?) for my boyfriend’s uncle’s birthday. We’ve been spending a lot of time with his family. And seeing as we are in a fledgling relationship, I took to letting him know things wouldn’t always be this way— my family matters too. Of course, he laughed and said, “I know they are. They’re just a little harder to get to.” Spoiler: my parents live in Ecuador. Yes, the one found in South America.

But I got to thinking about how easy it came for me to stand up for myself about this topic. And how not so easy it’s been for me in the past.

I got to thinking about compromise in life, but specifically, in relationships.

In my current relationship, things just work. We have the same end goals in life, we communicate well. But that’s a far cry from my past relationships. I compromised everything from seeing my friends to my values. I even once agreed to a casual relationship, even though that was far from what I was comfortable with.

I realized that flexibility is essential in a relationship, but only to a certain extent. When you start to compromise on things that make you who you are, that’s when the relationship becomes unhealthy.

For a happy, healthy relationship, make sure never to compromise on these things:

Your Friends And Family

A great partner is going to be accepting of your friends, even if they’re not jumping at every chance to hang out with them.

Those friends that we all know, the ones that become non-existent in relationships, aren’t doing themselves any favors. Maintaining your friendships and seeing your family is part of any healthy relationship, and your partner should be encouraging that.

Anyone that asks you to cut ties with those closest to you is trying to control your life. My advice: run.

Big Life Decisions

These include things like marriage and kids.

If you want children one day and your partner doesn’t, there’s never going to be a compromise that works. You’ll either miss out on a huge part of life, or your partner will have something forced upon them that they don’t want (and if that’s a kid, I can’t imagine that scenario ever ending well).

So don’t settle for a relationship where your views differ on big life decisions. There’s someone out there that’s going to align with you on these choices.

Your Hobbies/Passions

Do not stop doing the things you love just because your partner isn’t into them. That’s even more of a reason to do them because it fosters your sense of identity outside the relationship.

If you and your partner have different interests, that’s perfectly ok. Both of you are entitled to alone time and doing what makes you happy. You’re going to be better off if you both stick to this.

Your Physical And Mental Health

Your partner should care about both your physical and mental health.

This includes any sexual endeavors you both partake in. You should never feel pressured to do anything that you don’t want to.

This also includes your mental sanity. If your partner is manipulative or constantly toying with your emotions, then you’re compromising your mental health.

No relationship is worth compromising either of these.

Your Culture

I come from an upbringing that’s pretty void of any culture. But that’s something I always felt I missed out on. If your family has a rich cultural background and traditions, by all means, you should continue them.

Your sense of identity is vital in the relationship. Continuing to do things that make you feel like yourself is important. Your partner should also love all the things that make you unique, your culture included.

Make sure to keep your family’s traditions thriving in your relationship; you’ll have a more interesting and unique one as a result.

Your Goals

Whether they be personal or professional. Your goals are important to maintain; they give you something to work towards.

A relationship is all about supporting one another in whatever our goals may be. If you’ve dreamed of starting a business or writing a book, these are important to keep pursuing.

Whatever your life goals are, know that they aren’t up for compromise in your relationship.

Your Idea Of Fun

Sometimes, you’ll spend a night doing what your partner loves. The other nights, you should spend doing what you love.

Just because you and your partner might not see eye-to-eye on your ideas of fun, doesn’t mean either of you should give up what you love to do.

What you do for fun is part of who you are; make sure not to lose that in your relationship.

Your Self-Love

If your partner makes you question your worth, then they’re not the right person for you.

Self-love is key to a thriving relationship. How can you show love for others when you can’t even show it to yourself?

A loving partner will adore your unique quirks. They’ll make you feel comfortable being your authentic self with them. You won’t have to feel like you need to put on a show.


I know finding a partner can seem daunting, and being alone is scary. But don’t let these fears allow you to compromise what really matters.

Your compromise will eventually turn to resent, towards your partner and yourself.

Wait until you’re in a relationship where things come easy, and you don’t have to compromise on the big things. A healthy relationship is one where you can enjoy being you.

Until next week, my lovely readers.

All the love,

Kirstie


Articles I Wrote This Week:

Why Believing You Have A “Type” Could Be Keeping You From Finding Love

A Guide To Dating Without Dating Apps

Articles I Loved This Week:

I Don’t Know How To Feel My Desire - Ask Polly

I Deleted All My Dating Apps A Year Ago

What ‘Harry Potter’ Teaches Us About Mental Illness and Empathy

The Great Ghosting Of 1985


Want personalized advice?

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Finding The Extraordinary In The Ordinary

Happy Friday Fellow Humans!

This week has been.. interesting, to say the least. Did we almost go to war? Arguably yes. Did a truly saddening and horrific plane crash happen? Unfortunately, yes. Was I called a “zoomer” by someone who may or may not be a Russian bot? Yes.

But with all of this chaos going on in the world, it’s more important now than ever to really begin enjoying what we do have now. People are so focused on what’s going to happen in the future when in reality, all we are promised is what we have now.

I’m about to step into the period of my life known as my “late twenties.”

Arriving at this point prompted me to reflect on how the rest of my twenties went, and think about what I learned. The most surprising — and by far, most impactful — is that sustainable happiness isn’t found in the nights out at clubs or exotic trips.

I understand the appeal; those experiences are thrilling and out of the ordinary. But I spent my early twenties being continually disappointed by trying to ride their peaks. I was deeply unhappy, and I thought I could resolve that pain by leaving everything behind in favor of adventure.

In my early twenties, during my freshman year in college, I struggled with anorexia and a live-in, emotionally abusive boyfriend. Both tore me down, and I was a mere shell of the person I once was by the time I started studying for finals.

But then I saw an out in the form of graduation. Free of the constraints of attending classes, I sold almost everything I owned and moved to Chengdu, China. My worries were gone and responsibilities minimal; I partied with people from all over the world and reinvented my new normal.

But a familiar cycle began creeping up again. When things started to become ordinary, and my depression crept back up, I dropped everything and fled to another country. Flight by flight, soul-sucking job after soul-sucking job, I found myself back in the same state: depressed and dissatisfied.

I lived for the highs. I couldn’t handle the lows or even the middles.

After years of this vicious cycle and experiencing my worst bout of depression, I realized things needed to change; my current way of living clearly wasn’t working.

I decided I’d stop. I took the time to slow down and really enjoy what I had. And to my surprise, I found happiness in the places I least expected it.

It was in that first sip of coffee each morning. Walking in my neighborhood, for some fresh air. Taking the time to play fetch with my roommate’s dog. Doing work that made me feel proud and ending the day binging Schitt’s Creek, again.

All of it. Day after day. The mundane, but the surprisingly enlivening.

I found joy in the ordinary, the rather unspectacular parts of the day that I always overlooked. These were the moments I most often experienced, yet I never enjoyed because I was always focused on the future.

Life will always become inevitably mundane. No one is living vacation to vacation, party to party. We all wake up in the morning and brush our teeth. We eventually come home, decide whether or not to fold that pile of laundry finally, and spend an hour or so doing whatever it is we most likely do every evening.

This can either be a personal hell or your very own paradise.

Your mindset is the differentiating factor

We’re so often caught up in what we don’t have.

We don’t have the latest iPhone, expensive clothes, or lives worthy of an influencer’s Instagram feed.

Yet if you’re reading this article, that’s an indicator you have a lot more than you probably think you do. And if you don’t stop to really appreciate what you already have, you’ll live a life where you feel like you never have enough.

Your present can seem like a struggle, but it can also be bountiful. You can change your perspective to viewing what you have right now as enough. Because what you have right now is all you have. You never know when it will be the end of you having anything.

But to experience this paradise, you need to be present for it.

How are you going to witness the extraordinary happening in the ordinary if you’re not present for it? Worrying about the future or over-thinking your past robs you of your present.

I created a false illusion for myself that I had control over my future if I just worried enough. Most of the time, I caught myself anguish over imagined scenarios that never came to be.

I look back on what should’ve been the best years of my life — living abroad — and feel disheartened that I didn’t appreciate that time more. That I didn’t go to more rugby games with my friends. That I didn’t say yes to more trips, I was offered to tag along on.

Had I lived in the present, I could’ve enjoyed the moments of dancing with my friends in our favorite bar blasting underground German House music. Or maybe savoring a bit more tea in the afternoons when I didn’t work. The smile of the women that sold fruits outside of my apartment. Those little things I’ll never experience again.

Embracing the mundane means that life never really becomes ordinary.

You see the colors of the trees around you as little brighter. Chores that you usually put off become a bit more bearable. Flavors become richer. The smallest of moments fill you with so much happiness, you fear you might burst.

We all eventually fall into a routine, but that doesn’t mean life has become boring. We’re all gifted with many reasons to be happy. But our minds, worries, anxieties, and fears keep us from really enjoying them in the present.


Like anything, seeing the ordinary as extraordinary takes a bit of time. Sometimes you’ll fall back to living in the past or future. But life isn’t about being perfect; it’s about moving forward. In any way, you know possible.

Life is an indefinite journey. If you don’t stop to enjoy the wind on your cheeks or smell of fresh dew in the morning, you’ll miss out on life’s greatest moments.

Until next week my favorite humans.

All the love,

Kirstie


Articles I Wrote This Week:

A Guide To Changing Your Dating Patterns So You Can Finally Experience Love You Deserve

Questions You Have Every Right To Ask When Dating

Your “Needing Approval” Habit Could Be Pushing Your Partner Away

Articles I Loved This Week:

How 'The 5 Love Languages' Became the Language of Love We All Know (and Love)

‘My Life Is Pathetic!’ - Ask Polly

‘I Believe in Love’: Elizabeth Wurtzel’s Final Year, In Her Own Words

When Women Leave Good Men


Want personalized advice?

Part of this newsletter that isn’t utilized enough is the advice column portion.

Write in with something you want personalized advice on.

I’m here, just shoot me a reply to this email!


If you like this newsletter, please share it!

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New Year, New Relationships

Happy New Year Fellow Humans,

The roaring ’20s are upon us once more. I signed a petition to bring back flapper dresses and long cigarette holders (for my sage bundles, duh). But I’ve yet to hear back. Fingers crossed.

In the meantime, this week’s newsletter is going to be about a very important aspect of our lives. One that people either unhealthily obsess over or let fall to the wayside.

I’m talking about relationships. Romantic and platonic.

Take a couple of minutes and think about the last time you read a book focused on bettering your friendships. Maybe all you need are a few seconds because chances are, you’ve read a whopping zero.

Relationships are what make life worth living. What’s the point of working endlessly until we wither away if we don’t have people in our lives to enjoy the fruit of our labor with?

Spoiler: there isn’t.

The feeling of belonging and love is literally the third thing we as humans need, given we’re not starving and worried about being eaten alive by a tiger.

Personally, I place great importance on my relationships. And that means coming to terms with the fact that they’re not going to maintain themselves.

Romantic or platonic, there are a few pieces of advice that I learned over the past decade (mostly through my therapist) that help people form stronger relationships.

Learn How To Show Appreciation In Different Ways

If it comes as a shocker to you that not everyone gives and receives appreciation in the same way, then I’d suggest you get familiar with the concept of Love Languages.

While this theory is trendy in the world of dating, it’s also applicable to platonic bonds. You may think telling your friend or partner that you care for them is enough. But to them, they feel cared for by spending quality time with you.

Just like a person’s interests, everyone has different ways of feeling appreciated. Understanding those ways for the people closest to you will help form an even deeper bond.

Give Both You And The Person Time To Be Alone

Learning how to love time being alone is the best thing you can do for your relationships.

If you’re trying to define yourself through those around you, your sense of identity will feel scattered and unstable. Instead, focus on becoming comfortable with yourself. Take the time you need to feel fulfilled and do the hobbies you love.

It’s equally important to extend that space to the people in your life as well. Nothing is more draining than a person clinging to the relationship in hopes of lapping up every love-filled drop they can.

Don’t Compare Your Relationships To Those On Social Media 

And I mean never.

Comparison is the ultimate thief of joy, especially when it involves your life and a stranger’s highlight reel. People use social media to showcase the best parts of their life. Hell, influencers use it to showcase perfectly filtered, unrealistic parts of their life.

Spare your relationships from the unnecessary expectations and don’t compare your life to that of people on social media.

Become Aware Of How You Project Your Insecurities 

When I was younger, I picked apart every action I had with my friends and boyfriends. Their stray glance down my body meant they were taking note of my muffin top. Their comments on what I was eating were actually comments on how much I ate. I read everyone’s minds and knew they were solely focused on how I looked.

But in reality, I was projecting my body-image insecurities onto those around me. No one cared how I looked, yet I let my issues warp how I saw every interaction.

If you feel like you’re in the same boat, start by taking note of what bothers you in other people. Consider whether there is truth behind why you think they act a certain way or if you might be letting your insecurities get the best of you.

Accept People As Who They Are, Not Ideas

It’s a weird phenomenon for us humans that we form ideas of people and strongly cling to them.

But people aren’t ideas, they’re multi-faceted, ever-changing beings that are going to surprise you in both good and bad ways. That’s part of being human. A relationship is allowing the person to falter and being there to support them when they do.

Think of getting to know a person as a journey. Allow those in your life space to be an imperfect person.

Step-In To Help Without Expecting Anything

Possibly the worst networking advice on the planet is forming connections based on what the other person can do for you.

That’s a sure-fire way to make fragile bonds and look like an asshole.

Relationships with people aren’t a give and take. A real bond with someone, and being a genuine human being, comes from offering your help when there’s nothing in it for you.

Shift Your Mind-Set To Long Term

Seeing relationships as long term means there’s no room for acting like someone else based on who you’re with. There’s no room for deception. No time for selfishness.

Relationships that last a life-time are those formed on honesty and being genuine. If you’re genuinely looking for stronger relationships in this new decade, shift your mindset to aiming for long term relationships; the change in your behaviors will follow.


Hitting the gym and grinding it out to finally get a promotion is great, but that’s not what matters most in life. You’re going to be a lonely person if you get to the top of the corporate ladder with your bulging biceps and realize no one is up there, cheering you on.

Just like the fickle succulent on your kitchen shelf, a relationship with any person needs some tending to. Use this new year as a chance to invest your energy into building stronger relationships.

Because they’re what makes life worth living.

Until next week my lovelies.

All the love,

Kirstie


Articles I Loved This Week:

How Understanding Love Languages Can Strengthen Your Friendships

Make Yourself Unstoppable By Doing One Simple Thing

I Gave Up Meditating

I’ve Been In Four Relationships With The Same Person


Want personalized advice?

Part of this newsletter that isn’t utilized enough is the advice column portion.

Write in with something you want personalized advice on.

I’m here, just shoot me a reply to this email!


If you like this newsletter, please share it!

It would mean the world to me if you sent my newsletter to just two of your friends. Just that simple act helps spread the word about my writing.

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A Crazy Idea About New Year's Resolutions

You don't need a gym or diet *gasp*

Good Friday, fellow humans!

We are in the last few days of this DECADE. Wow, say that one again.

While this ain’t no Y2K— I’m not wearing jelly sandals and dancing to Crazy by Britney while my parents worry all technology will cease to exist— this new decade is still something we can get excited about.

With a new year comes an age-old tradition: new year’s resolutions.

And while I’m not a fan of resolutions, I’m sure most of you are. So I want to be the one that says something that desperately needs to be said:

New Year’s resolutions focused solely on losing weight are antiquated and uncreative.

Unless you medically need to improve your health, these resolutions are too focused on what’s on the outside. And that’s probably why people never keep them. The motivation is a bit surface level. 

So let’s dig a little deeper. 

If you’re going to partake in the tradition of resolutions, maybe consider setting your sights inward instead of externally. Why not use this chance to work on becoming a happier, more self-aware version of yourself?

If you’re interested in becoming a better person, consider these resolutions for 2020:

Stop saying “sorry” all the time

Some people struggle with admitting when they’ve done wrong. That’s a whole issue in itself. 

But other people are on the other side of the spectrum: they over-apologize.

If you’re one of these people who habitually say sorry, you know what I mean by this. 

When someone bumps into you at the store, you apologize. When you speak your opinion, it’s immediately followed by a “sorry.”

There’s no need to say sorry for existing, things that are out of your control, or anything that doesn’t warrant an apology. Saying sorry harms your psyche and those around you. You’ll start to feel and look guilty when you shouldn’t. It can even come across as annoying or weak.

Replace “sorry” with a term like “thank you” or “excuse me.” You’ll see a drastic difference fairly quick. 

Start seeing a therapist

Everyone could stand to see a therapist. Not a single person in this world is free of trauma or worries.

So why is it that therapy isn’t more popular? Emotional well-being should be as much of a priority to people as going to the gym; the world would be a much better place if so.

Take the leap and go see a therapist. Schedule appointments with a few people; find out who you like. Then talk to them about whatever it is that is bothering you about your life or self.

You’d be surprised what they can help you uncover.

Learn to communicate with your partner better

Communication in a relationship is key, but people are pretty horrible at it.

Some people feel like they’re not good at it. But you know what would fix that? Practice.

Others feel like they don’t have the words. In this case, there are plenty of books out there that can help with that (or, therapy — reference above).

Maybe you need to dive into a bit of psychology. Understanding your partner’s love language will get you far.

Strengthen your relationships by learning how to communicate better; you’ll see a difference in many aspects of your life. 

Keep your promises

If you’re the kind of person that likes to flaunt or makes promises they never keep, you’re doing yourself a huge disfavor.

There’s nothing more annoying than people that don’t follow through. Especially in this age of everyone living on the internet, people are faker than ever.

Genuinity is a rare characteristic nowadays. Aim to have your word mean something, rather than throwing around empty promises.

Cultivate self-love

Self-love is a lot harder to cultivate than it seems.

Our view of ourselves started when we were mere children. How our parents treated us and themselves shaped our self-esteem from a young age.

Then there’s the added, complicated layer of social media — making us feeling inadequate and comparing our lives to everyone else’s.

Opt for 2020 to be the year you finally love yourself. Replace the negative thoughts in your head with positive ones. Pursue goes that make you, and only you, proud. Treat yourself to things you love.

Do one little thing, day by day, and you’ll see a massive improvement by the end of the year.

Be humble

There are too many people in the world today thinking they’re hot shit.

But if there’s one piece of advice I could give them, it’s this: sit down, be humble (thank you, Kendrick).

No one is perfect. No one is above everyone else. No one knows everything.

You’re inhibiting yourself from a lot of growth when you lack humility and grace. There’s so much we can learn from one another, but being overly egotistical is going to keep you from that growth.


Let’s forget the gyms and diets, just for a year. Instead, let’s focus on becoming a better person internally.

With 2020 rolling in, shift your focus to alternative milestones that will make you feel and be a happier, more authentic version of you.

Until next week my amazing readers.

All the love,

Kirstie


Articles I Wrote This Week:

8 Ways To Fall Even More In Love With Your Partner

The Most Important Question To Ask Your Partner For A Stronger Relationship

Articles I Loved This Week:

I Planned On Dying Alone

Why You Keep Experiencing The Same Emotions On Repeat

Just Do Something


Want personalized advice?

Part of this newsletter that isn’t utilized enough is the advice column portion.

Write in with something you want personalized advice on.

I’m here, just shoot me a reply to this email!


If you like this newsletter, please share it!

It would mean the world to me if you sent my newsletter to just two of your friends. Just that simple act helps spread the word about my writing.

There’s a button below to share my newsletter easily!

Only Toxic By Britney in 2020

This week has been a helluva a week. The holidays are amongst us, and our president is now the third in US history to be impeached.

I’m not sure which should cause more joy.

Anywho, politics aside because they’re not my jam, let’s talk about the new year that’s rolling in.

A whole new decade is approaching. This means the time of resolutions is upon us, a time to make some significant changes or at least sign up for a gym membership you’ll never use.

While goals of getting in shape and eating healthier are great, finally letting go of toxic habits is something a lot of us could stand to do. More specifically, we need to let go of dating habits that are rude, selfish, or holding us back from finding love.

We got away with a lot when we were teenagers and in our early twenties. But many of these behaviors are a result of our insecurities, lack of respect for people’s feelings, and unawareness.

So it’s time to let them go, as Elsa would say.

It’s great to take your time to find an amazing partner, and it doesn’t need to be stressful. But these dating habits aren’t doing you or anyone else any good:

Read More


“No more toxic friendships, relationships, thoughts, vibes.. only toxic by Britney Spears.”


Here are some more resources I love all about letting go of toxic aspects of your life:

Cutting out a toxic friend

It’s not easy to end a friendship, especially if you’ve been friends for a while. There are a few tips in this article that make the process easier and help you decide if your friendship is more draining than filling.

Getting out of negative thought spirals

“Stop thinking about it,” seems to be the worse advice when you’re obsessing over an event or worrying. In this article, written by yours truly, I suggest getting out into the world. Replace your thinking with more doing.

Deciding if you should end your relationship

Break-ups suck. I would know, I avoided far too many where the relationship ran its course. But in this article, I try to help make things a bit clearer if a break-up is inevitable or necessary.

Habits to let go of to feel happy and successful

Unless you’re incredibly self-aware or seeing a therapist, most of us have toxic habits/beliefs that hold us back from being the best version of ourselves. This article helps pinpoint those habits for you.


With 2020 running in, use the chance of a New Years’ resolution as one to change not only your diet and exercise routine but your overall happiness.

It’s not always easy, but taking the first step is still the hardest. I hope this email helps you take that first step.

Until next week, my amazing readers.

All the love,

Kirstie


Articles I Wrote This Week:

How To Tell If Someone Has A Secure Attachment Style

My Boyfriend Isn’t My Soulmate

Articles I Loved This Week:

You’re Not Weird if Taking Care of Yourself Is Hard

You Should Never Have to “Fight” for a Relationship

Why You’re Still Friends With People You Hate


Want personalized advice?

Part of this newsletter that isn’t utilized enough is the advice column portion.

Write in with something you want personalized advice on.

I’m here, just shoot me a reply to this email!


If you like this newsletter, please share it!

It would mean the world to me if you sent my newsletter to just two of your friends. Just that simple act helps spread the word about my writing.

There’s a button below to share my newsletter easily!

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