Are you wondering if you love someone else more than yourself?
It is possible for this to be the case…
…But it doesn’t have to stay like this!
Once you realize this is what you’re doing, you can change the way things are!
Here are the signs that you love someone more than you love yourself, why it is that we love people more than ourselves and what you can do about it.
1) You think about what they need first
When it comes to making a decision about something you want to do in life – be it getting a tattoo, taking a solo trip or even choosing a film – who do you think about first?
Be honest with yourself: do you think about what you really want, or do you find yourself thinking about what someone else wants?
If someone else comes to mind ahead of thinking about your wants and needs, it signals that you might love someone else more than yourself.
I’m currently struggling with this situation in my relationship.
Simply put, I’m finding myself concentrating on what my boyfriend needs rather than what I need.
Instead of being true to myself about what I want to do with my life, I’m finding myself thinking about what he wants more.
You see, I’m planning a solo travel trip and I have so many places on my bucket list that I want to spend time at.
Now, he’s not all that happy about me going away for an extended period and he doesn’t think it’s how a relationship should be.
He thinks we should plan things together and I get it… So because of these thoughts he’s expressed, I’ve started thinking about how I can shorten my trip so he’s happy with the arrangement.
But, if I’m honest with myself, this isn’t what I want to do!
Truth is, I want to explore and to see the world… And I’m not in a rush to come back.
I realize that it’s his needs that are driving this decision and it’s just not what I want. In this instance, I’m signaling that I care more about what he wants than what I want.
In other words, I’m signaling to the Universe that I love him more than I love me.
So what does this mean for you?
If you’re finding yourself thinking about what your partner or love interest wants before you’re being true to what you want, it is an indication that you’re giving more love to them…
…And not enough to yourself!
2) You think about them all the time
When you’re in love with someone, it’s very natural for them to consume your thoughts a lot of the time.
Don’t feel bad about how much they keep popping up in your mind… Especially in the early days of your relationship!
It’s literally a chemical reaction going on the brain that you have no control over.
But there is a difference between thinking about someone all of the time, and not thinking about yourself enough.
Just like I said earlier, your needs are important…
…And it’s essential that you’re checking in with where you’re at and what you need from yourself to keep your self-esteem high.
It might be that you need to take more time for self-care by going to a yoga studio or by going on a solo walk.
Or it might be that you need to get some of the basics in order, such as ensuring you’re sleeping enough and drinking enough water.
You see, if your mind is constantly fixed on thinking about where they’re at and what they need then you’ll be doing a disservice to yourself.
Simply put, you’ll be ignoring what you actually need!
For example, I can very easily find myself focusing on the fact my boyfriend hasn’t done the work he said he was going to do and that he’s getting close to his deadline…
…I can actually find myself worrying for him and it takes up so much of my mental energy.
This manifests as me ‘being on his case’ and seeing where he’s at with a particular thing.
But here’s the thing:
I have my own things to focus on and things going on in my personal life that need my attention.
What’s more, each time I deflect the focus from myself and I switch to thinking about where he’s at, I starve myself of what I need…
…Which includes the love I need to give myself.
Now, it might not only be mental energy that you burn on them.
Think about the last time you gave yourself a self-massage, compared to the last time you gave them a massage?
You see, we can so easily find ourselves giving others the love that we actually crave for ourselves.
Change this by making a conscious effort to give yourself little gestures of love.
3) You spend more on them than you spend on yourself
We all have different love languages…
…Some of us love gift-giving as a way to communicate our love.
If this is you, there’s nothing wrong with that at all!
Gift-giving is heartwarming and a lovely way to show someone how much they mean to you.
But gift-giving shouldn’t be reserved for just those around you that you love… You should also gift yourself things that you want in your life!
Ask yourself: when did I last buy myself something I wanted?
If the answer was ‘I don’t know’ and you’re finding yourself giving your love interest more things than you’re actually giving yourself, it signals that you’re directing too much love their way and not enough in your direction.
You see, it’s not to say that you totally shouldn’t buy them anything… But you shouldn’t neglect yourself because you’re more focused on them.
What’s more, if you’re finding that you’re out of money because you’ve overspent on them, this is a big indication that you need to shift things!
As if that’s not enough, it’s important that you don’t find yourself saying ‘yes’ to doing things with them that are costing you more money than you’ve budgeted…
…You see, these things might end up putting you in a compromised position!
Going back to needs, you need to put yourself first and be aware of what it is that you need to put your money towards.
I used to find myself saying ‘yes’ to everything my boyfriend suggested, but now I’ve learnt that it’s necessary for me to take a second to pause and let him know that I’ll get back to him once I’ve had a think.
For example, he invited me on a trip recently with his friends that sounded like great fun…
But I realized that it would have put me back a few hundred pounds and it would’ve been an irresponsible decision as I’m currently saving.
I ended up saying ‘no’ and prioritizing myself and my needs, which signaled that I was being honest about where I’m at.
I won’t lie, it was a process to get to this point. But it’s possible if you’re conscious about your needs!
4) You talk about them constantly
Talking about someone constantly to your friends and family signals that you’re focusing more on them than you should be.
Again, it’s pretty natural to fall into this trap if you’re in the early part of a relationship…
…But try to be conscious about how much of your time with people you care about is dominated by talking about this person.
For example, do you tell people about what this person is up to and the things going on in their lives more than you talk about what you’re actually doing?
I’ll be honest: I’ve been there.
If you’re finding it’s actually a disproportionate amount, it’s up to you to do something about this!
You see, by filling so many of your conversations with thoughts about this person and their needs, you’re dismissing where you’re at and what’s on your mind.
If and when you find yourself allowing them to take up space in the conversation, just consciously catch the thought and let it go!
As in, when something comes to mind about them, you don’t have to speak it out loud… You can just watch the thought come and go.
What’s more, by doing this, you’ll be practicing the art of mindfulness!
Can you fully love someone without loving yourself?
In a medium article, one writer expressed that it’s bulls**t in their opinion that you need to love yourself before you can love someone else.
So what did they actually have to say on the matter?
“Yes, if you hate yourself and you’re living a reckless life, you probably should work on you a little (life coping tools) before investing in someone else. But the idea that you have to fully love yourself before loving someone else is not true. It’s a banner hung by people who have read too many self help books. It can be a wall we hide behind because we’re afraid to love.”
In other words, they’re saying that many people can hide behind the idea of not being able to love someone else because of their self-love issues… When really they’re afraid to let themselves love!
It’s a complex thought to sit with.
They add that:
“Like any relationship, your relationship with yourself goes up and down and sideways and requires a daily feed. It changes as you change, your circumstances change, and the people around you change. So no matter how much work you’ve done on yourself, or how far you’ve come in life, there are days you’re not going to love yourself. Because of so many other factors.
“You may be kinder to yourself. You may no longer hate yourself. But we all snap back at times. We all live with our demons to a certain extent. Because we all have our stories. And our stories have caused imprints and false beliefs. Because none of us enter adulthood unscarred.”
It’s a thought-provoking passage.
It made me really think about the idea of self-love being something that’s very influx and ever changing. As in, it’s not fixed!
You see, we live in a culture where we’re told that happiness and results can be achieved by following set formulas…
…But, the truth is, we don’t eventually reach a specific point where we’re suddenly able to love ourselves and that’s that!
Instead, it’s a constant work in progress.
Some days we might feel better about ourselves; other days, we might not feel so happy about things.
What does this mean for you?
It takes constant energy and reminders to remember to love yourself… And it’s something that you should be top of mind each and every day.
Why do we love someone more than ourselves?
Now, there might actually be an evolutionary reason behind why we love someone more than we love ourselves.
In an article about the topic, it’s said:
“We are wired for interdependence. We instinctively want to be with someone and take care of someone. We are made to love and to be loved! And despite what many say, human beings are built and designed to perform and to feel at the highest level when they are committed to love one person exclusively.”
That’s to say that we are literally designed this way: to love someone else.
So, if you are finding that your attention feels like it’s disproportionately on someone else, just remember that it likely felt the same for your ancestors!
There’s not much we can do about the way we’re hard-wired…
However, as I’ve outlined, there are ways to redirect the focus back to yourself when you feel as though all of your love and energy is focused on the other person and you’re depriving yourself.
Simply put, when it comes to love: there needs to be a balance of loving yourself and others.
Part of being human is loving others, but that shouldn’t come at the price of not loving yourself!
Can a relationship coach help you too?
If you want specific advice on your situation, it can be very helpful to speak to a relationship coach.
I know this from personal experience…
A few months ago, I reached out to Relationship Hero when I was going through a tough patch in my relationship. After being lost in my thoughts for so long, they gave me a unique insight into the dynamics of my relationship and how to get it back on track.
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