Here’s one relationship truth that I’ve learned after my first failed, long relationship:
“The relationship is a journey where you both come to give and contribute.”
It took 5 years for me to learn this.
But this is easier said than done. Living in a fast-paced environment or context we forgot that our relationship comes first.
So today, we’re here to discuss the 10 habits that can help us make and keep our relationship strong.
10: Consistent Check Up on Each Other
Yes! But not in a possessive “where are you and what are you doing now?” type of checkup.
No. This is more like “All good today babe?” type of checkup. Or “How does that make you feel” type of checkup. The root of this is to stay present and connected to what is happening in our loved one’s life. Professionally or personally.
Asking the question and just listening helps a lot.
Additionally, you can follow up with “I’m here if you need help” or assurance that you believe in him/her.
NB: This is not a call for directly helping or solving a problem. Nope. Just a checkup and communicating (indirectly) that you are there, present.
9: Laugh together
This is pretty much simple but, again, work work work and bills bills bills can result with thinking and discussing only the boring part of life.
This is why you need to be proactive and schedule a time during the week where you will watch a funny movie, play or hang out with a funny and positive friend.
“A smile is a curve that sets everything straight.” says Phyllis Diller. And I agree 100%.
Plus, sending a gif or a meme or a funny youtube video can really bring some joy and laughter in the life of your loved one during the day
8: Open up
There was a lyric from a song “everybody needs someone to lean on”… have you heard it? I think this describes my point perfectly. Leaning on means trust. And to trust someone we need to know that someone. Knowing someone means opening up to that person so that person can open up to us.
Also, we need to feel understood. But to get this, we need to share and seek our loved one to listen. The bond with the ones we love becomes stronger when we know and feel that they know us and they can walk a mile in our shoes.
7: Learn to Listen
With all this technology in our hands, on our wrists and in our ers it gets harder and harder to actively listen or be heard.
Here’s a video that explains my point on how the technology is changing us
Now, why we should actively listen to our partner?
Because this is the first step to indirectly communicate: “you matter to me”.
Two more tips:
A. Put the phone in your pocket or in a drawer when you’re trying to have a conversation
B. Ask questions to immerse yourself in the story you are being told.
6: Be honest
Here’s something that me and my partner decided to nurture: Radical honesty.
We’ve decided that we’re going to always find a way to tell the truth no matter how hard it is going to be for both of us.
We even decided to be conscious about it and use a “presell” sentence like “Babe you know that I love you and [enter other honest words of appreciation] but this this and this is not OK”.
From the little things to the big ones, we always keep it 100.
Why does this work?
Because you want a relationship where you feel free to share what you feel. Even if that can change the next day. Just share how you feel today and always be transparent what does that mean.
5: Memorize the important stuff
You need to show him/her that you took notes on what he/she likes and doesn’t’ like. It is the same feeling when you visit your favorite restaurant or bar and the staff there knows you and say the magical words: “the usual right?”
Knowing what our partner needs, wants and dreams above and occasionally satisfying those needs in forms of surprise, appreciation or celebration is a great relationship and emotional booster.
4: Stay playful
Do you remember how was when we were young and have a crush on someone? Or at the beginning of the relationship where we were teasing our girlfriend/boyfriend?
Well, don’t lose that. Find a way to tease and joke with your partner.
3: Be spontaneous
And this is hard. I mean…let’s be honest about it.
So, what can we do?
Well, here’s a trick that requires a little bit of work. Evaluate your “relationship” every month. Just look back every first of the month and ask yourself what happend which was out of the ordinary and you can label it as spontanious.
If nothing happened and it was “same ol’, same ol’, than ask the second question: What I want to happen this month?
2: Show Your Appreciation
Yes. Don’t just tell her how much you appreciate her achievements/traits/behavior etc. Show her that you appreciate it.
How do you show her?
Simple is better. Taking care of the dinner for that evening or buying her a 30 min massage is something that will make her eyes shine.
1: Learn to manage your emotions
Often we are projecting our daily frustrations at work to our partner when we come home. Or maybe we have something else stressing us and small issues with our partner turn into meaningless conflicts that lead to more stress. We should use the principle uner #8 above and openly discuss what are we feeling so the other side can be aware when and why we are on edge.