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How To Stop Being Impulsive In Relationships (19 Vital Tips)

Everyone gets impulsive from time to time. But it doesn't take long until it becomes chronic impulsivity if you keep at it. However, don't worry if you always find yourself thinking or talking to your close friends about your difficulty in controlling your compulsive behaviors. It might not be your fault entirely.

Impulsivity is a social behavior with numerous causative factors, from genetic to brain injury. It can also lead to several consequences, both short-term and long-term. 

Impulsivity in relationships begins with negative emotions and actions we overlook in our daily life. These negative feelings have consequences, whether you're aware or not. And what's worse is not knowing how your impulsive behaviors affect your partner, children, or the entire family. Here are some tips on how to stop being impulsive in relationships.

19 Tips To Stop Being Impulsive In Relationships

1. See a therapist

How impulsive behavior begins is not as big a problem as to how your impulsive behavior continues. Let's say you yelled at your partner once on impulse. How did one impulsive decision-making turn into a lifetime habit weighing down your relationship? 

Negative thoughts and emotions grow. For instance, quarreling with him every day may lead to violent outbursts and eventually physical violence. And for anyone who behaves impulsively, developing self-control can be a daunting task. 

It takes time and great commitment to break a bad impulsive habit. So involving a therapist for diagnosis and treatment can be a great way to manage your impulsivity. 

2. Trace your impulse to its source

Every problem may have numerous causes besides the root cause. The first step you need to take as you deal with impulsive behaviors is to know what triggers them.

Some common triggers include stress, loneliness, anger, etc. If any of these triggers has been something you've lived with even before your relationship, you may have to do a quick self-check to determine if there are more issues behind the scenes.

3. Don't overreact

Overreactions can be another form in which impulsivity can manifest in your relationship. Most women tend to be more emotional and self-conscious. But there is a thin line between expressing your emotions and jumping at every chance to spill your impulsivity all over the place.

Why do most women overreact? Many blogs cite numerous reasons for women and their likelihood to overreact. However, there can't be any straightforward answer to this question. You need to be more critical of what you choose to react on and how you express your reactions. 

Sometimes, you may be valid with your overreaction. But bursting out loudly can set you on the wrong foot. The timing of your reaction is also crucial. Imagine letting the tension cool down before putting your point across. Mostly, the resilience to hold yourself when you're angry is the hardest part. 

 It's helpful to practice mindfulness in these tense situations that may lead you to act on your impulses. It involves controlling your impulsive urges until you're sure you can hold conversations with your partner on an even level. 

4. Limit expectations

We have expectations for ourselves and our partners. And it's painful to see your partner act in ways below your expectation, especially if you both started dating not for long. You may have rules for your new partner, like him making time for your calls or taking you to the beach. Anything other than your expectations would bring disappointment and cause you to overreact. That's where the problem of expectations arises.

When we expect too much from people, we become subjects to their efforts and may behave differently if those expectations don't actualize. Letting go of your expectations, even for a little, gives you more control in such tense situations and gives you room to rethink your actions when you are tempted to overreact. 

5. Be mindful of what you do to water down your impulse

In its very nature, impulsivity is a compulsive disorder to satisfy oneself at all costs. It can rear its head in so many forms, from impulse buying to a compulsive urge to follow through on an action, even when the action stems from negative feelings. 

Let's face it. You can free yourself from impulsivity, but it takes time and incremental efforts to break just like an addiction. Therefore, it's crucial to be mindful of how your impulse behavior episodes end when you're at your lowest. 

Remember, you struggle with self-control. Don't make things hard for yourself by associating with your impulsive behavior triggers. Some people resort to self-harm and torture to return to their normal selves. This can threaten your relationship and cause your partner to consider a lifetime with you

It's crucial to understand what calms your nerves if you struggle with impulse buying and other impulsive behaviors. 

6. Try a massage

As we talk about learning to calm yourself down at your lowest, it's vital to understand the full spectrum of what causes people to be impulsive. 

As we said earlier, finding it hard to control your impulses around your partner is not entirely your fault. Its more common among people with Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), bipolar and other mental health issues.

Apart from these natural causes, your lifestyle can usher you into impulsivity. For instance, stress can be a major enabler of your impulses. The more worked out you're, the lesser your ability to control yourself when you're tempted to activate an impulsive behavior around your partner. 

The spa can be a safe haven for you if you're someone like that. Massage reduces stress and increases relaxation, helping you act responsibly in impulsivity-triggering situations. 

7. Learn to meditate

Meditating can be another great way to calm yourself and let things go if you sense your impulsive behavior is about to explode. It signifies a strong mindset to manage your impulsive decisions rather.

Mediation sessions can be short or long, depending on your level of maturity in the art. Some people do not always need to be in the lotus flower position before meditating. It's a reality you can activate anytime. And you'll need that level of fluidity when you're hatching the plan to spend your home's feeding budget on new kitchenware. 

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8. Have a workout routine

have a workout routine

When you're in a committed relationship, it's beautiful to have you and your partner fight through all the good and the bad. Leaving one person to struggle with their problems is unhealthy and has led to many failed relationships in the past. 

How can you involve your partner in your battle with impulsivity? First, you need to be open. Being secretive and unserious about your impulsive decisions and how they affect your relationship can do more harm than good. 

If your partner knows and is willing to tango with you on this one, you're less likely to watch over your shoulder for the consequences. Your partner can also support you on your building-up journey through exercising.

According to the National Library of Medicine, working out can be a great way to control anxiety, ADHD, and impulsivity. A behavioral science study also reveals that exercising can improve 'delay discounting' in both male and female adults. Delay discounting is a decision-making method that reduces the present value of a reward with a delay to its receipt. 

The study showed that people of all different ages, incomes, and relationship statuses could significantly improve their delayed discounting through consistent exercising. 

9. Create a befitting diet plan

Impulsivity can be associated with diet intake, unhealthy snacking, and irresponsible eating decisions. The more impulsive and irresponsible you are about your food choices, the more you expose yourself to food-induced obesity, affecting your self-esteem and anxiety levels. 

Dieting can be another way to rope your partner into breaking free from your impulsivity journey. But creating a timetable to monitor your eating impulses is no easy joke, especially when you're doing it alone. You may be tempted to procrastinate milestones when the '11pm ice cream' urge hits, and there is no one to stop you from taking a scoop.

That's why you need your partner for this job. Create a befitting diet plan that brings you both together. That way, your partner can monitor your eating habits and assess you based on progress made. 

10. Seek to be independent

Data from the fourth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, more than ten percent of the general population have an impulse control order. People with chronic anxiety and other substance abuse disorders may be more prone to impulsive control than stress-resilient and dependent people. 

Dependency in most intimate relationships is a long shot. The mutual exchange grows with trust and improves as the relationship ages. Rather, moving the relationship with a half and a half mindset, many people gravitate more toward codependent relationships. 

Codependency can be an emotional and impulsive behavioral condition where one person loses their sense of independence, always attending to the other partner. It involves two people investing in each other so much that they can't function independently.

While this is a happy ending, many intimate relationship partners yer for, getting it is not that simple, especially for people struggling with impulsivity in intimate relationships. If you're someone like that, you might go overboard treating and spoiling your partner, wanting the same in return. You may feel unappreciated if you get less than what you bring to the table. 

Also, the habit of constantly prioritizing others' needs above yours is neither healthy nor sustainable in relationships. It can increase your vulnerability to anxiety and other critical mental health challenges. Ensure to have your own sense of independence, giving you some level of control in your relationship.

11. Have a work-life balance

Impulsive behavior can affect relationships beyond your home. It can be more frustrating if it reaches your workplace, affecting your performance in the long run. And once you have your income and career threatened, you may become even more impulsive with your emotions, overreacting to things with every second you get. 

The effects apply even if you're your own boss. Impulsive behaviors can reduce your ability to be responsible and hurt relationships with clients and partners. Business partners need a guarantee for their investments. They'll always want to know if they can count on you not to behave recklessly, tanking their efforts in the long run.

12. Resist the impulsive urge to start and end your relationships

Relationships start with a spark. From your first date to your last day, which sometimes never comes, depends on your ability to nurture the relationship. And that's the hard part. Nurturing a relationship demands you to have a thorough knowledge and understanding of each other. You will have to give second chances for errors you make, and you will need that same tolerance level. 

However, some impulsive behaviors can cloud your judgments and for you to constantly overreact. At times, when you're wrong, you may feel an unwillingness to convince your partner to forgive you. Your attitude can eventually create a false impression that you're always the right one leading to an urge to call it quits whenever is convenient. In times like these, you need to be self-critical, assessing your negative emotions and what fuels them. 

You may be valid and justified if your partner is the source of your woes. But most of the time, you'll realize your emotions have very little to do with him and everything to do with your impulsivity. 

13. Don't overromanticize him

Overromanticizing your partner fuels your expectations and can be dangerous. It causes partners in many intimate relationships to build relationships on destiny or fate, which may not be sustainable. For instance, believing your partner is your only soulmate can make you less attentive to their flaws. 

The more you romanticize the idea of staying with them forever, the more willing you are to do everything possible to keep the relationship going, even if you're not supposed to. That's a sure way to expose yourself to a toxic relationship. Apart from that, you will have to keep making impulsive decisions to match up to the eventuality created in your head. 

Relationship experts recommend partners conceptualize intimate relationships as a lifetime of service. If you both view your relationship as hard work, its future will depend on mutual efforts, not on your impulsive decisions. The best part about conceptualizing your relationship as a service is that it makes it easy to talk over issues, give feedback to each other and pull out or continue if the need be. 

14. Set your priorities

Organized and more efficient people are less likely to have their impulses lead the way in all the things they do. They take planning and budgeting seriously, affecting every part of their lives. Setting goals for your personal life or relationship can add this level of rigor to it. 

Your priorities become the imaginary figure you need to report to. And your priorities can guide you in all the things you do, from how you engage your partner in bizarre situations to what you spend money on. You tend to ask yourself critical questions like whether a new purchase helps you and your partner or it's just your impulse buying at its high. These indicators can be a great way to keep your impulses in check. 

15. Be firm with your decisions

impulsivity thrives on uncertainty and indecisiveness. For instance, you get to the mall purposely to shop for children's supplies entering the new semester, and you're attracted to an inexpensive bracelet. If you buy the bracelet, you may not complete all the supplies on your list. 

An indecisive person with an impulsive buying habit may gravitate toward the bracelet neglecting the priority. This scenario can repeat itself in numerous ways throughout your relationship. What's more important about making decisions is your mental strength to implement them through thick and thin.

16. Surround yourself with positive influences

surround yourself with positive influences

Your circle of influence can greatly impact your struggle with impulsivity. The impact goes both ways. If your friends are as impulsive as you're, your impulsivity can be harder to break. You may have to rethink your circle of influence if you need to break your impulsivity. Connect yourself to a helpful support system that will encourage you to double-check your plans before they become actions and a tad too late. 

17. Use your distractions to your advantage

Distractions are inevitable, and your efforts to avoid them might prove futile. Working through them can be a better approach. For instance, you can consider taking down notes during conversations if you know you have a habit of impulsively blurting your thoughts out. If you write your thoughts down clearly, you can express them with more control saving you from being overly aggressive in your submissions.

18. Be patient with yourself

As you bank your strategies and support system to gain more control over your impulsivity, remember results will not happen overnight. So be patient with yourself. Consider the situations in which you're more prone to be impulsive. You can devise strategies to avoid your impulses in those situations. But these strategies will fail sometimes. Rather than beating yourself, it's crucial to understand how they failed so you can beef up the strategy and become more resilient in the future. 

19. Set up tripwires

A tripwire can be an emotional regulation or rule that keeps your impulsiveness in check. Your tripwire acts as an extra barrier, holding you back from defaulting on your decision to keep a specific impulsive behavior at bay. Tripwires are helpful in the short term, but they can be overpowered by obsessiveness to experiment more with your impulses. Setting up tripwires can make it harder to act impulsively. 


How do you get rid of impulsive behavior?

Excessive impulsive behaviors are like negative behaviors that distract you from enjoying an ideal personal life or relationship. However, for some people, these behaviors are an escape from something more damning like anxiety or depression. Ultimately, you need a sustainable way out than a piecemeal approach to fighting your impulsive behaviors. The best option is to talk to an experienced therapist. Other options like joining a support group, exercising, journaling, etc., can also help a great deal.

Can an impulsive person change?

Impulsive behaviors are hard to deal with depending on how far advanced you are in practicing that impulsive habit. That notwithstanding, there are several success stories of people turning from their impulsive behaviors to an optimally controlled life. Therefore there is significant hope if any impulsive person wants to fight their impulsivity. 

What does it mean to be impulsive in a relationship?

Impulsive behavior can manifest in many forms in a romantic relationship. You can talk of acting quickly towards what your partner said without thinking of the consequences to him or your entire relationship. This habit mostly leads to failed relationships, and it's crucial to keep them in check by seeing a certified therapist.

What are 5 impulsive behaviors examples?

The underlying factor that determines an impulsive behavior is if the person does it without critically thinking about the outcome and will probably repeat the action regardless of the outcome. If so, frequent outbursts during interactions can be one main example. You can also talk of binge eating, self-hurt, gambling, and excessive drinking as examples of impulsive behaviors.

Does anxiety make you impulsive?

Yes. Experts believe that anxiety makes a person more likely to become impulsive in many ways. But the scenario is a mirror reflection, i.e., impulsivity can cause anxiety and vice versa. Anxiety as a mental health condition is characterized by overthinking and fear of specific realities. Impulsivity also thrives on the uncertainty caused by fear and overthinking, leading you to make decisions without thinking about the consequences. 

In Conclusion

Generally, impulsivity can be hard to catch and define. What you call impulsive behavior might feel okay to someone else. And even though I hope you find the tips in this article helpful, a certified therapist is the best person to see if you think your impulsivity is affecting your relationship. Luckily, several of them exist today, and a simple online booking can save you the stress of fixing appointments into your already busy schedule. 

Also, feel free to share your thoughts about this article, impulsivity experiences, and tips with the entire community and us, so we can all learn from each other. 

Utilize this tool to verify if he's truly who he claims to be
Whether you're married or just started dating someone, infidelity rates have risen by over 40% in the past 20 years, so your concerns are justified.

Do you want to find out if he's texting other women behind your back? Or if he has an active Tinder or dating profile? Or even worse, if he has a criminal record or is cheating on you?

This tool can help by uncovering hidden social media and dating profiles, photos, criminal records, and much more, potentially putting your doubts to rest.


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