How to be an Independent Woman in a Relationship

independent woman standing in her office

Figuring out how to be an independent woman in a relationship can be challenging. You want to prioritize your relationship but you don’t want it to take over your life. It’s a real balancing act.

Maybe you’ve been dating someone and your lives have begun to blend a little so you’re afraid about what that means? Or do you avoid getting into anything serious because you don’t want to lose your independence? 

Whatever your situation, juggling independence and love is possible. You just have to know how to do it. 

Here’s our advice on how to be an independent woman in a relationship.

How to be an Independent Woman in a Relationship: 6 Pointers

Spend time with your friends

Spending time with friends is important, no matter your age or relationship status. When we’re single, we concentrate a lot on our platonic connections because we don’t have a significant other. 

That’s why when you’re figuring out how to be an independent woman in a relationship, whether your friendships will fall to the wayside can be a major concern, but it doesn’t have to be. 

Sure, nurturing a romantic relationship may cause your priorities to shift a little, but that doesn’t mean they have to totally change. It just means you’ll need to manage your time differently. 

Set aside time each week where you see or call your friends. Better yet? Spend this time alone with them, without your partner. That way you can give them your full attention. 

Remember, you’re in control of who gets your time, so manage it accordingly!

Have regular alone time

Self-reflection is key to understanding who your independent self is.

We all need alone time to pause, reflect, and just be with ourselves in stillness. That doesn’t change when we gain an S.O.

We advise having at least one night a week to yourself where you enjoy your own company. When you live alone, achieving this is easier because you can simply avoid having your partner sleepover every night.

If you live with your partner, then make the most of when your partner is out and prioritize going out by yourself too.

Keep up your hobbies

Having passions independent of your partner is key to a successful relationship. Better yet? Studies show it’s attractive too! So, whether you’re a sports fan or you love music, make sure to dedicate time to tend to your hobbies each week. 

Why not plan a trip away for one? Book yourself into a spa or explore a new city. Solo trips can be liberating.

Practicing your hobbies is a great way to nurture your sense of self, so don’t let go of them simply because you have a partner. 

Pay for certain things yourself

If you pride yourself on managing your finances, then you may be worried about how being in a relationship will affect your self-sufficiency. 

Even though costs should technically be split in relationships, this isn’t always the case. Many people use their financial capability as a means of expressing their love. This is a particularly common love language among men when they’re dating an independent woman.

The downside of this expression is that it can make the receiver feel like they’ve been stripped of their independence. 

Sure, purchasing gifts or flowers is a nice gesture, but if your partner is covering your expenses without asking you first, it can make you feel useless, not flattered.

Our advice? Speak to them. Communication is key to a happy relationship. Work out a system between you, one that’s split fairly.

Explain how you appreciate their generosity but that you don’t want them to have complete financial control. Tell them that you also want to contribute to the relationship. 

Make decisions together

Is your partner a control freak? Do they like to make all the decisions regarding your plans or to always have the last say? If so, you could be in a controlling relationship.

Having a partner who insists on taking the reins on every decision can make you feel powerless, but it isn’t normal. Avoiding this dangerous relationship dynamic is possible.

When you’re dating, be honest from the get-go that you expect equal control in the relationship, and if you’re currently in a relationship that isn’t 50/50, be honest about it with your partner. 

Set aside time to discuss what changes you’d like to make, what you’re comfortable compromising, and what you’d like to have control over.

Remember (and stick to) your values

One of our top tips to those working on how to be an independent woman in a relationship is to stick to your values. 

Everyone has their own belief system. You don’t have to lose sight of yours because you’re part of a couple. 

Sure, successful relationships require compromise, but there’s a difference between making small changes and forfeiting your beliefs. 

If you feel like your partner is constantly trying to change your belief system, then this could be a relationship red flag. 

Our advice? Take some time to think about what your values are before you date. What qualities do you admire? What behavior will you not tolerate?

The better you know who you are and what you need, the easier it is to find someone who is a good match for you. Searching for someone whose values align with yours will lead to less conflict and more harmony. 

When you’re understanding how to be an independent woman in a relationship, that’s a game-changer. 

Just because you’ve found love doesn’t mean you’re forfeiting the old you, it just means you have to figure out how to be an independent woman in a relationship as opposed to one on her own. 

And guess what? That’s ok. The right partner won’t try to take away from your independence, they’ll love you for it!

About the author: Shani Jay

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