The Biggest Mistake People Make In Relationships

People rarely want to ruin their relationships, but unfortunately, it happens.

couple arguing Alex Green / Pexels

We've all stumbled through our fair share of relationship mishaps, but there's one mistake that stands out as a fast track to relationship ruin.

What is the biggest mistake people make in relationships?

According to speaker and performance coach Sabastian Enges, dimming our partner's light is the greatest mistake we can make.

But how do we dim our partner's light, and most importantly, how can we avoid it?




RELATED: The Absolute Worst Kind Of Betrayal, According To A Couples Therapist

Why do we dim our partner’s light?

Dimming your partner's light can come from a place of insecurity. According to Enges, we mute our partner because we're terrified of other people. We're scared that other people will recognize and appreciate our partner's bright characteristics.


Does this sound familiar? When you first meet your partner you are impressed with how dedicated they are. They're constantly exercising and working hard daily.

But as your relationship progresses you begin to criticize them for the characteristics you once loved.

"Stop going to the gym," you complain, "You're always busy and you never make time for me."

Nine times out of ten people who engage in this behavior are filled with insecurity. They're terrified their partner will leave because they're so bright.

This intense fear can stem from your fear of abandonment. Fear of abandonment stems from childhood trauma, says certified trauma and relationship specialist Annie Tanasugarn.


She writes, “This fear is often learned and conditioned from invalidating, negligent, or abusive environments that wrongly teach a child that they are expendable or that they do not matter.”

And even though it's tough, we shouldn't let our trauma and insecurities ruin an otherwise healthy relationship. But how do we know if we're insecure?

Relationship coach Kelly Gonsalves says common signs of insecurity include:

  • Seeking constant reassurance.
  • Looking for signs of rejection.
  • Constantly appeasing your partner.
  • Trust issues.
  • Controlling behavior.
  • Always taking things personally.

RELATED: The One Thing You Do Every Single Day That Will Destroy Your Relationship


How To Let Your Partner Shine Bright

Healing our insecurity issues begins with addressing our abandonment trauma. And addressing abandonment trauma starts with taking some accountability.

Have others hurt you? Yes, but are they responsible for your healing? Absolutely not! Only you have the power to take the steps to heal yourself; no one else can do it for you.

Focus on the present moment and use your hurt toward something exciting. Join a sports club or sign up for an art class. Put your energy into something constructive.

Next, engage in deep breathing exercises when you feel overwhelmed.

When that yucky feeling of self-doubt comes to the surface, take deep breaths to bring yourself back down to earth. When you've calmed down, ask yourself what you need. Do you need time alone or company?


When it comes to addressing insecurity, communication is key. According to licensed counselor Minkyung Chung, "You must show compassion and openness with your partner."



Be honest with how you're feeling and come up with a resolution together. It's crucial to see this conversation as a path toward a healthier, more rounded relationship founded on trust and honesty.

If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed during this conversation, take a break.


Take twenty minutes to yourself to decompress and gather your thoughts. When you're calmer, re-approach the conversation ready to both talk and listen.

Finally, don't over-analyze your doubts. As Chung writes, "The only power your doubts have over you is whatever you allow them to have.”

Take control of your doubts and stop labeling yourself as an insecure person. Remember what we think can make or break us.

If we want a secure relationship we should believe that we can become a secure person.

RELATED: 8 Subtle Relationship Problems That Can Ruin Your Marriage

Marielisa Reyes is a writer with a bachelor's degree in psychology who covers self-help, relationships, career, and family topics.