Red Flags in a Relationship 

Red Flags in a Relationship Relationship Breakthrough Coach

How To Recognise and Understand the Impact of Value Differences in Relationships

Red flags in a relationship don't need to be dealbreakers but they can often highlight important areas you might want to pay attention to. This page will help you recognise and understand the impact of value differences in relationships. 

Are you experiencing a crisis in your relationship? You may be experiencing frustration, confusion, or uncertainty.It's unnerving. It's demoralising. But if you flip the coin it might just be an opportunity for a relationship breakthrough!

There is a lot of information to cover in this page so use the quick links if you want to dive in to the specific sections:

Quick links: Red Flags in a Relationship

The Impact of Red Flags in a Relationship 

The Most Common Red Flags in a Relationship

Living Parallel But Independent Lives

Abuse In a Relationship

Playing the “Blame Game”

Unresolved Conflict in Relationships

Cheating in a Relationship

Lack of Intimacy in a Relationship

Other Red Flags in A Relationship

The Impact of Red Flags in a Relationship

Sometimes, what is not obvious to you is obvious to everyone around you. You know something doesn't seem right but cant quite put your finger on it. An outsider looking in can spot the red flags in a relationship a mile off. Here you can discover the most common red flags in a relationship that can lead to a break up or relationship breakdown.


The point is not to get into a blame and shame mindset but to disassociate from the emotional impact just enough for you to focus your attention where it needs to be. In life coaching, I believe that a problem well stated is a problem half solved, but if you cant see the problem in the first place we need to start there. Awareness is key.


Before you read the rest of this page I need you to be clear on something. My clients often want to know if life coaching sessions will mean they will keep the relationship together. The brutal truth is that I have no idea what a relationship breakthrough will mean to you. 


When you transform yourself, you also transform your relationship in very deep and profound ways. A mind once stretched can never shrink back to its previous limitations. 


That can mean one of two things: 

a) overcoming the obstacles to take your relationship to the next level

b) your relationship was never meant for you and when your relationship ends you will be confident to take whatever action is right for you.


I can promise you that awareness of the red flags in a relationship will also reveal value differences between you and your partner. Once revealed you can work to resolve them to achieve even stronger connections and alignment. Working through values differences is really a fun way to achieve a breakthrough and can be enlightening for anyone willing to do the work in their relationships. 


Finally, any red flags in a relationship may just be the tip of an iceberg. You might refer to these as the presenting problem. Once you begin unlocking your thinking around the problem there may be deeper factors that need to be addressed. 


Life coaching with NLP can help to uncover deeper level factors that once brought to surface can lead to even more profound breakthrough's which means the presenting problem dissolves completely as an issue in your life.

The Most Common Red Flags in a Relationship

Red Flags in a Relationship Relationship Breakthrough Coach

There are common themes, or patterns that people see as red flags in a relationship. Each of the red flags mentioned below have been subject of life coaching interventions with clients who have achieved incredible personal breakthroughs. 


You may have already experienced them in your own previous relationships. They may also be present in your relationship now. People get caught up in a spiral that can quickly get out of control and they ask themselves "Why does this always happen to me?"


The point is to have an awareness of what they mean to you on a personal level. This is where you can be your own life coach. Shine the spotlight on the stage as you look at from a different perspective. 


Ask yourself these life coaching questions:

"What does this mean to me?"

"How do I really feel about it?"

"What can I learn from this?"

"What is the outcome I want to achieve now?"

"What is my most preferred response?"


Some may be obvious whilst others less so.

Living parallel but independent lives

Living parallel but independent lives is a red flag in a relationship because you have become room-mates rather than a loving couple. 


This happens far more frequently than you may imagine. You share a house, you may share a bed, but little else. You might eat separately, watch television separately. If that’s raising some questions for you, read on. 


Instead of actually living as a loving couple, you both do your own thing. For a while it may be great to focus on your own activities, hobbies, and friends. Your relationship is basically surviving rather than thriving. 


If you ask yourself, you know this already, and so does everyone around you.


This could be a great opportunity to recreate some of the spice in your relationship. Time to reconnect with your partner and your relationship goals. Keep the fire burning. Spend some quality time together. Make special date nights. Make special effort to be with your partner at certain points.  


Or it could be a symptom of other issues just beneath the surface. Where has your attention been? Where has your partners attention been? Are you really meeting each others needs in your relationship?

Abuse In a Relationship

Caution Tape Abuse in Relationships Relationship Breakthrough Coach

Any kind of relationship abuse should be a major red flag in a relationship. In my view, this is the exception because this red flag should be a dealbreaker. Cross this line once and once only.

Toxic relationships are not just about physical violence. Emotional, physical, financial and sexual abuse are major red flags for relationship abuse that are far more prevalent than you might believe. 

Nobody needs to accept any kind of narcissistic abuse. if this is a red flag for you, you need to take action to remove yourself from harms way.

Men and women often deny, dismiss, or rationalise the mistreatment if their significant other is hitting them or else physically harming them. They are a victim and blame themselves for the abuse. Sometimes the fear of leaving the person outweighs the fear of staying with them.

There are also patterns that perpetrators of abuse follow. This is commonly referred to as a cycle of abuse. What this means is even though you might be fooled into thinking the abusive behaviour has been addressed, and forgiven its only a matter of time before it shows up again.  

If any form of physical violence exists get some support. Speak to someone who knows what you are experiencing on an emotional level.  You are not alone. It's your call.

Playing the “blame game”

Playing a blame game is a red flag in a relationship because it demonstrates a lack of responsibility. It also shows that your relationship goals have been thrown out with the bath water. 


You are either the cause or at the effect of the results you are experiencing in your relationship. 


You may want to just re-read that and let it sink in. In fact, if you have been playing with the disempowering "Why me?" spiral this might address that. 


If you have clearly defined relationship goals, and you know the outcome is important, you wouldn't entertain blaming and shaming. You would take responsibility to put things right and achieve the desired outcome. Don't wish your relationships were easier, that could be futile, wish you were a stronger person for your partner.


Part of being an adult entails taking responsibility for your situation. That means through sickness and in health, for richer and for poorer, through the good times and the rough remember?


No one is flawless and relationship problems are by no means one-sided. Blame can be harmful. Blame simply reinforces that size nine boot you just used to trample over your partners values.


Blaming your partner for what is going wrong in your relationship is  picking up a red hot coal to throw at them! You are the one who ends up being burnt. 


Can you see how this red flag shines the light on your value differences? It can highlight a lack of understanding, lack of communication and lack of team work.


If you are achieving nothing, you can guarantee nothing will get resolved until the blame game stops, and you step up to your own responsibility.


Nothing is your fault. Everything is your responsibility.

Unresolved Conflict in relationships

Unresolved Conflict in relationships is a red flag because they are like meatballs simmering in the pot. They will be fine as long as the heat is low but as soon as the heat rises they could quickly dry out and burn. No one enjoys cleaning out a burnt pan. 


One of the top ways to keep a relationship healthy and prevent these red flags is to keep communication channels open and work to resolve conflicts speedily. Never go to bed angry! (No, you should not stay up and plot your revenge!) 


Regrettably, some couples allow relationship conflicts to go unresolved for days, weeks, months, and even years. Then they have an argument where all that conflict suddenly flashes upon the forefront of their mind. They wield it like a shield, or a sword, never letting either of you forgive and move forward. Have you ever experienced that? 


It doesn't help does it? 


It is an effective strategy to trigger a relationship breakdown, or worse a break up. On the other hand if you are willing to work through these and identify the value differences in your relationship you can achieve a relationship breakthrough. Especially if you found yourself repeatedly experiencing the same conflict over and over again throughout different relationships. 


Sadly, unresolved conflicts in relationships don't go away on their own.  It isn't always true that time is a great healer because these scabs can be pulled off at any stage. They can gradually tear your relationship apart. One or both of you will regularly feel aggrieved or infuriated, plus those pent up emotions always emerge one way or another. 


Remember that irreconcilable differences are often cited in divorce applications. If you have unresolved conflict you should address it head on and work through it with your partner, otherwise one of you may be filing papers to the court.

Cheating in a Relationship

Perhaps one of the most obvious red flags in a relationship is cheating. When there is infidelity in a relationship it will always impact the relationship in some way, even if the "non-offending" (not intended as judgemental) partner is totally ignorant of the affair. People who are truly happy, will hardly ever cheat on their partners.


Cheating in a relationship highlights significant values differences. It goes beyond relationship values and impacts on fundamental human needs. People engage in affairs to have needs met (whether emotional or sexual) that are not being met within the relationship. 


Perhaps the concept of cheating wouldn't apply in an open relationship. Even so, multiple partners can lead to multiple red flags. If you are not sure about how you feel about this concept, my guess would be that you are opposed but trying to convince yourself otherwise. Maybe even subject to controlling and coercive behaviour? (see abuse in relationships)


The meaning that you attribute to this behaviour will massively dictate what your response will be.


If it happened, face it, choose to resolve it, and move forward. It will all come down to your own values and how you perceive this red flag in your relationship.


Adultery in marriage is a cause for many divorces. For more about the impact of divorce, follow the link.

Lack of intimacy in a relationship

Intimacy in a relationship is what sets apart friends and lovers. Therefore lack of intimacy could signify red flags in a relationship. Are you just good friends or you really in a loving relationship?


For women, intimacy can often driven by emotion and will induce positive feelings of being loved and desired. A woman will open to the partner with whom she is free to fully experience herself. Sexual intimacy for men is more a physical and often a primary way to communicate his love and desire for his companion.


When intimacy in a relationship is absent or lacking, it can be a clear sign of a major relationship breakdown. If there are no medical reasons or other natural barriers to intimacy it could also b indicative of deeper routed problems.   


Intimacy in a relationship is a basic human need and if you're not getting any there could be some thoughts of rejection, or self doubt present. If left unchecked, this could even lead to resentment, or humiliation if this has persisted over time. You both have needs and if they are not being met, chances are you will look elsewhere to meet them.


Remember that you go into a relationship to give, rather than receive. Do you meet your partners love language when it comes to intimacy? Do they know yours? Are there any value differences being highlighted in your relationship?


This is another area for profound personal breakthroughs. Life coaching for men, women or couples can help you work through your values differences. When you understand each others needs you must to commit to meeting them. Red flags in a relationship can disappear but it must be win-win or no deal.

Other Red Flags in A Relationship

"What does this mean to me?"

"How do I really feel about it?"

"What can I learn from this?"

"What is the outcome I want to achieve now?"

"What is my most preferred response?"

Of course there are other red flags in relationships. And there will be red flags that are unique to you or unique to your partner. After all red flags highlight value differences in relationships or areas where your needs are not being met. 


Having unrealistic expectations in your relationships will be a like banging your head against a wall to ease a headache. You don't need to make things out to be any worse or any better than they actually are, but you really must realise what the gaps mean for you. Be realistic with yourself and your partner. Sometimes, cooling off just a little can be hot! 


For me it almost goes without saying that trust in relationships is high priority value. Trust is much more than mere cheating in a relationship. Trust encompasses everything you do. If there is a lack of trust of your partner it will impact your social life, your family life, your finances, your emotional well being. Either way, resolve it quickly or move along swiftly otherwise, watch out for many of the other red flags in a relationship to follow close behind.

 

You probably already realise that compromise in relationships is essential. You do this instead of that. You spend time seeing person A instead of person B. If the compromise is a concern for you, or if you feel that you are always having to compromise check your level of commitment. If the relationship is strong, you probably wouldn't even use the word "compromise"


Communication in relationships is the life blood for your happiness. If your communication goes sour beware of unresolved conflict. This will also lead to lack of trust and broken expectations in a relationship. If you have boundaries, communicate them, otherwise how can you be annoyed if your partner oversteps them? You might have thought these were red flags in a relationship, but it boils down t communication. Likewise, discuss your partners boundaries too. Use the love languages guide to lead to a positive outcome for your communication in relationships.


Most of the time communication, it isn't just what you say, but how you say it. Moreover, if you say one thing and then do something else don't expect to be trusted for much longer. Lack of integrity can also be interpreted to indicate a lack of respect and lack of thought. 

Red Flags and Relationship Breakthrough's 

Raising awareness of red flags in a relationship and the meaning that you ascribe them can be a major step towards a relationship breakthrough. 

Keep your desired outcomes at the forefront of your mind.

Know your ultimate relationship goals.

Be realistic about achieving them. 

Teamwork helps make the dream work.

What do you want to know next?

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Hope you found your visit to the Relationship Breakthrough Coach of value today. Did you find what you are looking for?

I am adding new content all the time but if you have any idea's or topics you would really love to see here, get in touch and let me know.

In the meantime here are more great pages dedicated to transforming your relationship breakdown or break up into a breakthrough. 

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  • Save a Relationship

    How do you save a relationship when the storm is brewing all around you? Life coaching questions for overcoming the obstacles of a relationship breakdown.

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