Telehealth sessions in Maryland and DC
410.949.1238

Embracing the Unknown: Navigating Uncertainty in Relationships

Fairy tale concepts like “love at first sight” and “happily ever after” are very seductive. However, they usually ignore the hard work that goes into maintaining a healthy relationship. We’re sent on a wild goose chase for our “soul mate” but don’t get the help we need on how to remain compatible. This can lead to feelings of uncertainty that can poison any connection.

If uncertainty arises and remains unchecked, partners don’t know where they stand with each other. They question each other’s commitment and sometimes get distant. Rather than opening our hearts, we get caught up in building walls around it. Fortunately, all of this can be addressed and prevented.

What Can Cause Uncertainty in Relationships?

Woman And Man Sitting on Brown Wooden Bench
It’s normal to feel uncertain about anything from time to time. When it becomes your default setting, that is a major red flag. Every relationship is unique, but some common causes can be identified, such as:

  • A fear of being open and vulnerable
  • Lack of trust
  • Unhealthy communication styles
  • Different lifestyle needs and choices
  • Not having shared goals
  • Comparing your relationship with other couples you know

A giant step toward resolving uncertainty is seeing it as a golden opportunity to grow and evolve — individually and as a couple.

6 Ways to Navigate Uncertainty in Relationships

1. Prioritize Your Communication Skills

This is a process without a finish line. Commit together to the journey, and you will reap the rewards of open, healthy communication. Uncertainty cannot thrive when two people interact in a direct, honest, and respectful manner. In that state, they feel comfortable sharing their fears and concerns before negative energy can infiltrate their trust.

2. Choose Appreciation Over Criticism

You won’t be left wondering how you feel about each other if you both express appreciation and gratitude regularly. Give to each other without looking for what you’ll get in return. Learn about your partner, talk about their dreams and goals, and be generous with your compliments. Don’t assume they know how you feel. Say it — often.

3. Do Things Together While Maintaining Independence

Keep the passion and excitement alive by developing interests together. Also, of huge importance, you must make plans together. Set goals and work as a team to attain them. On a parallel track, give each other room to have lives outside of the relationship. It’s healthy to have different social contacts, interests, and goals.

4. Build Trust

If and when you sense the presence of uncertainty, explore it from a place of trust. It doesn’t have to mean something bad is happening. Trust your partner. Have enough faith in them to put your improving communication skills to good use. In moments of frustration, avoid leading with criticism or passive-aggression reactions. If your partner seems distant, approach them with compassion.

5. Be a Role Model

As mentioned above, some level of uncertainty is inevitable and normal. These are the times to consciously treat your partner as you wish to be treated. Lead by example through your actions, words, choices, and reactions.

6. Be Kind to Yourself

Of course, you expect your partner to support you but it’s not healthy to depend on them solely for this kind of help. Be the source of your own happiness. Practice daily self-care rather than expecting your problems to be “solved” simply because you’re in a relationship.

Uncertainty Can Sneak Up On You

By the time you identify uncertainty’s presence, it may have already become a challenging problem. Keep in mind that you can manage such situations by connecting with us for couples therapy. Your weekly sessions can feel like safe workshops where both partners can explore their emotions while seeking new approaches.