20 ways to stop being pushy in a relationship

Think about a time in your life when you were pushed to do something.

It didn’t feel so good, did it?

If you were pushed—no matter how well-intentioned the push—it felt like a poke in the eye or an elbow to the stomach.

Now imagine doing this to the most important person in your life—to your significant other.

It doesn’t feel good and it doesn’t help anyone be happy. I know you know this, that’s why you’re here.

The good news is that you can still make things better for you and your SO.

In this article, I will give you 20 surefire ways to stop being pushy in your relationship.

The need to control others

The most common reason for pushiness and the need to control is anxiety.

People with anxiety disorders are often pushy because they want everything to turn out great—not just for them but for the other person. In other words, you can even be considered a hero…except that, the way you do it is damaging to the people around you.

You have a hard time accepting that sometimes things just won’t turn out great, no matter how hard you try.

So, in an attempt to control the outcome, you force your partner to do what you think is best for them.

You have to kick this habit before it damages your relationship.

20 ways to stop being pushy in your relationship

1) Take a “time out” whenever you have the urge to control

Pushiness is a trait that has been ingrained in some of us, especially if we grew up in a home with very strict parents.

We say things like “I’m just being honest”, or “I’m not being a child” without thinking about the consequences, because that’s what we consider as normal.

When you feel like pushing your partner in any way, stop. Take a deep breath and ask yourself if you’re actually trying to help them, or you’re trying to force them to do things so they’ll pass your standards.

Try to break from your pattern by getting out of the situation, distracting yourself (like counting to 10), or even sleeping it off.

Doing anything that can break your usual habit of pushing your partner would have a huge effect in your relationship.

2) See your partner as an equal, not a child

When you push your partner, you are treating them like a child who needs to be told what to do.

But we’re adults and we already know what’s best for ourselves.

When you push your partner, they have no say in the matter.

They are unable to voice their opinion or reason with you because when one person pushes another, it is a sign of dominance and superiority.

You may not be aware that this action will cause your significant other to feel like there is nothing more for them than being pushed around by someone else’s desires and commands without any input into what decisions get made about themselves—in essence treating them as if they were an immature child who needs direction from others instead of deciding for themselves.

3) Acknowledge the unhealthy power dynamics in your relationship and fix it

Most of the time, a relationship becomes toxic when there’s an unhealthy power dynamic at play. It’s all about the level of control one person has over the other.

In healthy relationships, both people have more or less equal amounts of power.  In unhealthy relationships, that’s not really the case.

That imbalance is what causes a lot of problems in the relationship.

While the tips in this article will help you deal with being pushy in a relationship, it can be helpful to speak to a relationship coach about your situation.

With a professional relationship coach, you can get advice tailored to the specific issues you’re facing in your love life.

Relationship Hero is a site where highly trained relationship coaches help people navigate complex and difficult love situations, like the need for one partner to control the other. They’re popular because they genuinely help people solve problems.

Why do I recommend them?

Well, after going through difficulties in my own love life, I reached out to them a few months ago. After feeling helpless for so long, they gave me a unique insight into the dynamics of my relationship, including practical advice on how to overcome the issues I was facing.

I was blown away by how genuine, understanding and professional they were.

In just a few minutes you can connect with a certified relationship coach and get tailor-made advice specific to your situation.

Click here to get started.

4) Take a look at how you are talking to your partner and stop if you see pushiness coming out of your mouth

Is it about what you want? What do you think will make them happy? Is it about what they should be doing? Is it about how they should be feeling?

If so, then stop and look in the mirror and see if there is an underlying reason for your words that has nothing to do with love or happiness.

Words are not just words.

Words can have a lot of power, and when you say something to your partner, it has the power to make them feel uncomfortable and make them feel insignificant.

This is often the case when you say things like “you need to do this” or “you need to stop doing that”.

Your partner will feel like they are not in control of their own life or their own choices, but instead that they are being told what to do by someone else.

When we feel like we’re not in control of our own lives, it makes us lose our sense of happiness and security.

If your partner is upset by something you’ve said or done, then there is a good chance that it was because of a pushiness issue.

5) Think twice before making a decision or asking for a response from your partner

When your partner says no, it means no.

You gotta respect that.

If they don’t want to join in on whatever activity you are doing, then they don’t have to join in just to please you. If they don’t feel like being with you right now, then that’s their choice and not yours!

Don’t ask them again until they feel more comfortable with the situation. Don’t push them into having to make a decision that isn’t theirs to make. They aren’t responsible for what makes YOU happy!

You have to decide what makes YOU happy!!! You aren’t responsible for anyone else’s happiness but YOUR own!!! Maybe taking some time alone together would help both of you find some peace…or

6) Ask yourself, “Is this really necessary?”

Sometimes, you gotta let things slide to keep the peace. Choose your battles.

If you don’t want to put yourself through the stress of an argument, then maybe this isn’t a good time to be with your partner. Maybe they really do have something they need to do and you are only making it harder on both of you by pushing them into doing something they don’t want to do anyway.

What is the point of fighting over it? Why can’t you just get along?

Maybe if you would stop pushing your partner, they would feel more comfortable being with you for a while. You might be surprised at how much better things can get!

7) Don’t speak negatively about your partner or their family members

When you talk negatively about your partner or their family members, you are telling them that YOU are the problem and not them.

How they are is not really your business and you might as well focus all your energy yourself.

Negative feedback is never a good idea for any relationship.

It can be very frustrating having to deal with someone who constantly talks negatively about you or your family members.

Be sure that everyone in the couple knows this, otherwise it will make them feel insecure and resentful towards one another which only leads to more negativity in the relationship––a vicious cycle!

8) Don’t expect your partner to make you happy all the time

No one else can make you happy or sad—they have a life of their own that is separate from yours, and they don’t owe you anything!

They aren’t responsible for making YOU happy! If YOU want something different, then change it yourself. You aren’t responsible for anyone else’s happiness but your own.

Don’t instruct them how to live their lives just so you can ensure your happiness.

9) “Fix” yourself instead of fixing others

You might wonder why your relationships so often start out great, only to become a nightmare?

And what’s the solution to feeling discontent in a relationship?

The answer is contained in the relationship you have with yourself.

pexels los muertos crew 8836426 scaled 20 ways to stop being pushy in a relationship

I learnt about this from the renowned shaman Rudá Iandê. He taught me to see through the lies we tell ourselves about love, and become truly empowered.

As Rudá explains in this mind blowing free video, love is not what many of us think it is. In fact, many of us are actually self-sabotaging our love lives without realizing it!

We need to face the facts about our need to control the people we love:

Far too often we chase an idealized image of someone and build up expectations that are guaranteed to be let down.

Far too often we try to “fix” our partner, only to end up miserable.

Far too often, we are on shaky ground with our own selves and this carries over into toxic relationships that become hell on earth.

Rudá’s teachings showed me a whole new perspective.

While watching, I felt like someone understood my struggles to maintain a healthy relationship- and finally offered an actual, practical solution to it.

If you’re done with sabotaging your relationships because of your high expectations and strong urge to control, then this is a message you need to hear.

Click here to watch the free video.

10) Don’t expect your partner to do things that don’t make them happy

If you want them to do things that don’t make them happy, then tell them! Don’t expect them to do things that don’t make themselves happy.

If your partner doesn’t want to act in a way that makes you feel good about yourself, then they aren’t doing anything wrong. They aren’t responsible for how you feel towards them.

Sure, they should go with you to some family dinners, but  if they want to spend their time doing something else, don’t feel like you’re the victim of their selfishness.

11) Stop making everything about you

Be sure to remember that your partner is their own person. They are not you!

Most of the things they do aren’t connected to you or your relationship.

If they are feeling a bit blue, it’s not because of you or how they feel about you. Don’t shake them out of their melancholia just so you won’t feel bad about your relationship.

If they don’t want to be around you, don’t take it personally.

It’s not all about you and your relationship. In other words, your SO has a life that’s separate from yours.

12) Don’t expect your partner to live up to your expectations of them

You’re not their parent and they’re not a child. You are a separate person and they are an independent adult who is responsible for their own happiness and self-fulfillment.

Again: You are not their parent and they’re not a child.

They are independent adults who are responsible for themselves and their own happiness, so don’t try to mother them or take care of them when you know that’s what they need to do on their own.

You have enough going on in your life without worrying about another person—you can barely help yourself sometimes.

13) Stop upgrading your relationship

Don’t upgrade your relationship.

If you’re unhappy, then by all means change something about it. But don’t try to make it better just so that you can feel happy!

If you want your partner to be a certain way in order to make yourself happy, then adjust your expectations of them.

Don’t expect them to be a certain way just so you can become happier or else they’d start to get burned out and give up on your relationship.

14) Stop blaming your partner for things they didn’t do

If you’re unhappy with something, then that’s on you—not on them. Stop blaming them for things that aren’t their fault.

If you want to change something about your relationship, then change it. But don’t blame them for things that are on you—not on them!

It’s not their responsibility. You’re the one who is responsible for your own happiness, and you need to stop blaming them if things aren’t working out well in your relationship!

The only person you can change is yourself—so make it happen if that’s what needs to be done. But don’t blame them because they have nothing to do with the situation at all.

15) Find other sources of joy aside from your relationship

If you’re unhappy with your relationship, then find other sources of joy aside from it. You need to stop trying to find happiness in your relationship.

Go out with friends, start a project, find something to geek about.

People with Type A personalities have a tendency to have very high expectations of themselves and everyone around them. Instead of trying to “fix” your SO, try to get busy obsessing about other things instead.

16) Look for the good in your partner

No matter how challenging it may be for you, look for the positive.

It’s impossible not to find any.

Even when you’re unhappy in a relationship, look for the good. Try to look at all of the good things that are going on in it instead of focusing on what’s wrong with it.

If you really can’t find anything to appreciate with your SO, then it’s better to break up than to fix the other person to meet your needs.

17) Stop comparing your partner to others

Stop trying to be better than your partner or be more perfect than your partner. You’re not them and you can’t be them—you need to stop comparing yourself to other people and learning from them!

It’s important to respect yourself and your partner. Never try to change someone else or make them into something they are not, because you will be miserable in the process. Instead, focus on what makes them unique so that others can love everything about who you are!

18) Acknowledge the fact that you’re also full of flaws

It’s inevitable that you have flaws. No one is perfect.

If you’re having a hard time in your relationship, try to acknowledge the fact that you’re also full of flaws. It’s okay to be imperfect—as long as you are honest about it and try to improve yourself so that you can become more than what you were before.

Be aware of your weaknesses and your flaws and work on them to become a better person. Don’t look down at yourself because of your imperfections—it’s not about being perfect but about being true to yourself!

19) Think about how your behavior would affect your future children if you won’t change it

Think about the kind of person that you want them to become and how they will be affected by the way you are now.

Be aware of how your actions affect not only your SO but the people close to you and your future children.

Being pushy is a trait and you’ll likely get pushy with anyone who allows you to push them around.

Stop it now, and start with your SO.

20) Think of the impression you’ll leave on people

Think of those people who can light up a room just by their presence. You can be that, too. Or at least, you can try not to be a source of darkness.

It’s okay to be moody sometimes, but try to be a ray of sunshine when you can.

Not everyone wants to be around a person who is always happy and up, but it’s important to remember that there are also people who prefer an atmosphere of brightness.

If you think about it, we’re all going to die one day. Do you really want to be remembered as someone grumpy who ruins everyone’s day?


So there you have it, the 20 things you should do if you want your relationship to last.

If you’re not happy in your relationship, it’s okay to try to fix it.

If your partner isn’t willing to work on things with you, then maybe it’s time for both of you to move on.

But hopefully, by now you’ve got a better idea on how to become less pushy.

It’s time to stop fixing your relationship with a hammer. Let it flourish with unlimited amounts of love instead.

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Picture of Tina Fey

Tina Fey

I've ridden the rails, gone off track and lost my train of thought. I'm writing for Ideapod to try and find it again. Hope you enjoy the journey with me.

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