Autonomy Seeking Relationship Style: What Does It Mean For You?

Is your relationship style autonomy seeking? 

If your relationship style is autonomy seeking, you value your personal space and appreciate time spent alone.  Having an autonomy-seeking style means you want the freedom to be yourself within the relationship. It’s important that your partner makes you feel valued and gives you space.  

Your hidden desires

There are 3 hidden desires for the autonomy-seeking partner. It may be one that is true for you, or you may resonate with all 3. The three hidden desires for the autonomy relationship style are:

1. Appreciation: You want to be able to trust that what you do in the relationship matters. You want and need to feel valued by your partner. 

2. Space: Alone time is important to you. Therefore, you desire time and space to do things independently. 

3. Ability to be your authentic self: You crave the ability to speak your mind and come as you are. You don’t want to feel stifled or held back in any way. 

Phrases that fulfill you:

Statements that make you feel most loved:

  •  “I appreciate who you are and everything you bring to the relationship.”
  • “I want to support you in being the best version of yourself.”
  • “Take all the time you need. I’ll be here when you need me.”

 When you’re frustrated or hurt in your relationship it’s usually because those words aren’t ringing true. You end up questioning those very statements. And when you’re not seeing eye to eye with your partner you might wonder “do they really value and appreciate everything I do for us?” You might feel like you’re always doing something wrong. You may eventually begin to question whether it’s possible to satisfy them.  

The challenge with the autonomy seeking relationship style 

The autonomy seeker desires a lot of independence. This can make your partner feel alone and unwanted. You tend to be focused on your own hobbies or work. You may not be investing enough time in your relationship. And your partner may be taking the backseat to other things in your life. 

Autonomy seekers have a tendency to avoid difficult situations. You may be opting out of the conversations that are uncomfortable. But those are the conversations that bring you closer in the end. 

Develop connection

Too much of one thing is never great. And when you desire autonomy so strongly, you don’t make room for the opposite desire, connection. There are so many ways to improve your connection with your partner while still keeping the autonomy that you require. One way to grow your connection is to let your partner in more. Invite them to join you in a hobby you usually enjoy alone or discover a new one that you both like. Ask them about their day, and tell them about yours. Whether it’s a kiss, rubbing their back, or taking their hand - touching your partner throughout the day reminds them you care. Let your partner know that you’re prioritizing them by planning time together just the two of you.  

How to love a partner with an autonomy seeking relationship style? 

Here are 4 tips for loving a partner with an autonomous style:

1. Accept and support some separation: Be okay with your partner’s need for time and/or space to do their own thing. Try not to take it personal, and remember that it’s not because they don’t care for you.

2. Respect their goals and pursuits: Show interest in their activities, their work, etc. and support them. Be their cheerleader!

3. Express appreciation: Acknowledge what they do in the relationship and tell them how grateful you are. 

4. Be together and apart: Make time for being together in the same room but engaged in separate activities. A win-win!  

Taking the next step...

Most people have both a primary and secondary desire. Find out yours by taking this quiz. Your results will be emailed to you.  Make sure your partner also takes the quiz and you discuss the results together. You don’t have to settle for a relationship that’s just “okay”. Together you can uncover how to get the type of love you want and need. 

If you’re ready to fill in the gaps and have the connection you so desire, join one of our workshops. Our workshop will equip you with the tools you need to take your relationship to the next level.  Love can be simple. Your desires can be met! 

You can learn about other relationship styles below:

Adventure Seeking

Connection Seeking

Security Seeking



50% Complete

Two Step

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.