15 ways to stop being needy and desperate in a relationship

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No one wants to be in a relationship with a needy, desperate person. 

It takes up too much of your partner’s time and energy. It leaves them feeling drained rather than fulfilled. 

And all the while, you’re making it harder for them to grow in a relationship with someone else.

If this sounds like you, then think about these 15 ways to stop being needy and desperate in a relationship.

1) You should not be the one to initiate contact

Have you ever found yourself so eager to hear from your partner that you start a text message or email while they’re still in the same room?

As soon as they’re out the door, you finish it off and send it.

This is needy and desperate. It implies that you need them to talk to you in order to feel okay in the world.

Create space between your communications so that asking for another one isn’t a big deal. 

If they don’t respond this time, then quietly wait until they come back around again next week or month.

I know that this is easier said than done. It can take a lot of practice to stop initiating contact, but the payoff is worth it.

2) Try not to spring into action when they’re freaking out over something

One of the ways to stop being needy and desperate in a relationship is by being understanding and patient. 

You can have your partner take a break to figure out what’s going on with them. Or you can try to help them sift through their emotions, coming up with a plan of action. 

But stepping in when they’re freaking out almost always ends up triggering that needy and desperate part of you. 

When you do this, it comes across as though it’s all about you, not their feelings or situation.

Key point:

When they’re freaking out, wait until they are calmer before expressing any concerns.

3) Don’t lower yourself by doing what you know is wrong just to get some attention from them

You’ve probably been in a situation where your partner seems to be pulling away from you. 

They’re not as affectionate or responsive and you end up doing something stupid to try to get them to notice you again. 

And when your neediness is on full display, it only makes them more distant. 

It’s easy to become frustrated and even feel helpless. You may even be tempted to throw in the towel and give up on love. 

I want to suggest doing something different. 

It’s something I learned from the world-renowned shaman Rudá Iandê. He taught me that the way to find love and intimacy is not what we have been culturally conditioned to believe. 

In fact, many of us self-sabotage and trick ourselves for years, getting in the way of meeting a partner who can truly fulfill us. 

As Rudá explains in this mind blowing free video, many of us chase love in a toxic way that ends up stabbing us in the back. 

We get stuck in awful relationships or empty encounters, never really finding what we’re looking for and continuing to feel horrible about things like being needy and desperate in a relationship.

We fall in love with an ideal version of someone instead of the real person. 

We try to “fix” our partners and end up destroying relationships. 

We try to find someone who “completes” us, only to fall apart with them next to us and feel twice as bad. 

Rudá’s teachings showed me a whole new perspective. 

While watching, I felt like someone understood my struggles to find and nurture the love for the first time – and finally offered an actual, practical solution to stop being needy and desperate in a relationship.

If you’re done with unsatisfying dating, empty hookups, frustrating relationships, and having your hopes dashed over and over, then this is a message you need to hear. 

I guarantee you will not be disappointed. 

Click here to watch the free video.

4) Don’t act jealous at the thought of your partner spending time with other people

Needy and desperate people feel terrible when their partners are out with others. 

They’ll do everything they can to find out what their partner is up to. 

They’ll get jealous if they learn that their partner was looking at other women or men when they were supposed to be together. 

But trust is the foundation of an intimate, fulfilling relationship. 

And if you’re not able to trust your partner, then you’re pretty much doomed from the start. 

What’s more, jealousy and possessiveness come across as being needy and desperate

You’ll probably hurt your partner by making them feel uncomfortable or insecure. And they’ll feel obligated to do whatever you want to get rid of that feeling. 


Try to have faith and confidence in the relationship. If you can do that, then you won’t feel jealous at the thought of your partner spending time with other people.

5) Build up your own self-worth 

If you don’t feel confident in your own self, then you’re much more likely to be needy and desperate. 

You’re afraid that if your partner leaves, you won’t be able to survive on your own. You’ll always want them back. 

As a result, you try to grasp onto them and make sure they stay with you forever. And it will only make things worse for everyone involved.

So how to overcome being needy and desperate in a relationship? 

The answer is to take charge of your own self-worth. 

You can do this by setting goals and having plans for how you want to improve yourself. Or you could create some projects that give you goals and milestones. 

For example, you could release a single track on your favorite music channel. Or go back to school and get your teaching credential. 

These are things that you can count on yourself to achieve. 

You’ll put in the work to make yourself better, which gives you the self-worth you need to not feel needy and desperate in your relationship.

6) Establish clear boundaries for your partner

Here’s the truth: 

Being needy and desperate in a relationship will naturally happen. 

It comes with feeling like you’re worth so much. And feeling unappreciated for all of your hard work, as well as your thoughts and feelings. 

So it’s important that you establish clear boundaries for your partner. 

Once you have these set, then it will be easier to relax and not feel needy and desperate in a relationship. 

You’ll also know exactly how much effort you need to invest in your relationship without driving yourself crazy. 

Here are some of the boundaries you could try: 

  • Don’t continually check your phone or constantly feel like you need to be in contact with them unless it’s an emergency. 
  • Don’t have a hard time saying “no” to your partner. 
  • Let them know they aren’t allowed to guilt you into something that you don’t want to do, or into doing something you don’t want to do.

7) Refrain from any romantic gestures or “lovey-dovey” things they aren’t interested in

Some people feel needy and desperate in relationships because they always end up doing things for their partners. 

They’ll do anything to make their partners happy. 

They’ll also try really hard to make their partners want them back, even when it’s clear that the partner isn’t interested in being with them anymore. 

Let’s dig a little deeper: 

The more you try to make someone else happy, the more you end up suffering. 

And this will only make you feel worse about yourself and you will end up being more needy and desperate. 

Instead, learn to be more self-sufficient and confident. Know your boundaries for what you’re willing to do for your partner.

8) Remember that every relationship is two-sided 

There is a role for both parties in a relationship

You could even say that you need your partner more than they need you. 

However, it doesn’t mean that their needs and wants are less important than yours. 

This is what makes relationships work! It’s not a one-sided thing where one person is on the verge of going crazy and the other person keeps things normal for them. 

No, relationships work when both people in the relationship give and take. 

If you’re not used to being in a two-sided relationship with your partner, then it’s time to get used to it. 

Make sure that you are giving as much as your partner is giving. Be proactive about keeping the relationship alive and healthy.

9) Put yourself first sometimes and spend some quality alone time

Let’s go back to the example of the controlling and needy partner. 

One of their main problems is that they think they are nothing without their partner. And that is not healthy, no matter what stage the relationship is in. 

But what if you could avoid being needy and desperate in a relationship?

You see, so much of what we believe to be reality is just a construction. We can actually reshape that to create fulfilling lives that are in line with what matters most to us.

The truth is:

Once we remove the social conditioning and unrealistic expectations our family, education system, even religion has put onto us, the limits to what we can achieve is endless.

I learned this (and much more) from the world-renowned shaman Rudá Iandé. In this excellent free video, Rudá explains how you can lift the mental chains and get back to the core of your being. 

A word of warning, Rudá isn’t your typical shaman. 

He’s not going to reveal pretty words of wisdom that offer false comfort. 

Instead, he’s going to force you to look at yourself in a way you have never before. It’s a powerful approach, but one that works. 

So if you’re ready to take this first step and align your dreams with your reality, there’s no better place to start than with Rudá’s unique method.

Here’s a link to the free video again.

10) Don’t allow them to dictate what you do or where you go

Sometimes people feel needy and desperate in relationships because they feel like their partner is always the one who sets the rules and dictates what they should do.

You see, it’s okay for your partner to have expectations of you, but when those are not reasonable, then you should let them know that. 

Try to find out what those expectations are. Then talk about it with your partner and see if you can compromise.

Trust me, it’s better to make plans and discuss your differences before the relationship wears you down.

Here’s the step-by-step process to help you prevent them from dictating your behavior:

  • Identify your needs, wants, and boundaries
  • Set your priorities
  • Communicate openly, honestly, and authentically
  • Go somewhere quiet that is free from distractions so you can both be fully present in the conversation
  • Don’t be afraid to speak up, express your opinion, and make decisions

11) Try not to overanalyze what they’re doing 

When you’re in a needy state of mind, you think too much. You think you have to analyze everything that your partner is doing or saying. 

And by overanalyzing, you’re going to spend all of your time thinking about what they are saying instead of enjoying them.

Probably, you’re also in a never-ending battle: 

“She’s not calling me enough.”

“He hasn’t said anything about the relationship.”

It’s never-ending. 

But if you can’t stop thinking about it, then you might end up sabotaging things. And maybe even have a breakdown because of it. 

So try not to overanalyze what your partner is doing. Instead, focus on making you feel better about yourself or spending time with friends and loved ones.

12) Embrace the positive aspects of being needy

Negative feelings are like fire: 

They burn you, but they also keep you warm. 

You see, if you don’t have any negative feelings, then you’re not going to have any positive feelings. 

So by making an effort to be less needy in your relationships, don’t expect to feel all rainbows and butterflies. You’re not going to like the feeling of being needy less.

Instead of trying to suppress the negative feelings, embrace them. 

When they appear (and they will), don’t try to fight them. Instead, let yourself feel them. That way, at least you can get some value out of your negative emotions.

Here is Justin’s confession video of 7 positive aspects of being needy and why he embraced them

13) Let them know that you’re capable of doing things on your own

I know that this sounds like a contradiction, but let me explain. If you’re needy, then it’s hard for your partner to trust you. 

So to let them know that you are capable of handling your life on your own, you have to make it happen. 

You do not have to do everything on your own, but you have to at least acknowledge it. More importantly, they will trust you more.

But here is the key: 

When you let them know that you can handle things on your own, then it’s their turn to change their behavior and stop trying to control you. 

Or better yet, they might want to create a space where you can do things on your own.

14) Keep yourself busy with work, hobbies, or other interests

Relationships are tough.

It’s really hard to stay together, especially if you’re in a long-term relationship. 

And when you’re needy, it can make everything worse. You might feel desperate and start doing things that you’re going to regret later on. 

So keep yourself busy with work and hobbies to keep your mind off of the negative energy that accompanies being needy in a relationship. 

This will allow you to have something productive and positive going on for yourself.

You can try joining a club that you’re interested in. Or take up a hobby like playing an instrument or working out.

Another option is to do things that are specifically for you. 

For example, if you like to write, then why not start writing articles? Write something positive that is focused on helping the world or something that you’re particularly interested in.

So take the next step:

Stop being so needy, get out there, and start enjoying life.

15) Don’t wait for their response before doing something

You see, waiting for their response has to do with being needy and afraid.

You’re afraid that if you do something without explicitly asking them, then they might not like it. And you’ll end up doing something wrong and feel bad about yourself. 

So to avoid a negative feeling, you might want to wait before doing something. 

But wait too long and the feeling of wanting to ask arises again. So eventually, you end up doing nothing at all – which only makes things worse in the long run.

Here’s the situation:

You might be afraid that they’re going to say no, so you wait until they reply to your text or engage in conversation before doing something. 

But by doing that, you are looking for their approval and validation. 

Instead of looking for their permission, express yourself and do the things that you want to do.

You will feel better about yourself and don’t have to depend on your partner for your own sense of self-worth.

Final thoughts

We’ve covered 15 ways that you can start to stop being so needy.

Because in the end, if you want to have a happy and healthy relationship, then it’s going to depend on you. 

In fact, just by being less needy, I bet that things will get better between you and your partner. And also embrace the positive aspects of being needy. 

Can a relationship coach help you too?

If you want specific advice on your situation, it can be very helpful to speak to a relationship coach.

I know this from personal experience…

A few months ago, I reached out to Relationship Hero when I was going through a tough patch in my relationship. After being lost in my thoughts for so long, they gave me a unique insight into the dynamics of my relationship and how to get it back on track.

If you haven’t heard of Relationship Hero before, it’s a site where highly trained relationship coaches help people through complicated and difficult love situations.

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

I was blown away by how kind, empathetic, and genuinely helpful my coach was.

Click here to get started.