Love is a war all on its own without all the external issues that plague modern relationships. With the rise in glamourizing infidelity, social media and the decline of open and honest communication relationships are becoming harder to maintain. Let’s go over 10 simple things you can do to strengthen your relationship.
1. Build mutual interests together.
Your relationship started with connection. Find a few things you really enjoy doing together, such as watching a show, a sport, hiking, photography, paint events, car meets or anything else you both enjoy doing. Make the time to do these things once or twice a week and discuss the activity afterwards to understand each others perspective on the activity.
2. Ask more questions.
Relationships take compromise and selfless actions. Ask your partner about their day, how they feel about things, what they would like to do and take their response into consideration. Remember that your partner deserves your consideration and compromise, and making decisions without their best interest at heart does not promote a healthy and balanced relationship.
3. Make time to be sensual with your partner.
Physical intimacy is important in a relationship, but sensuality is often over looked or lost over time. Couples become complacent and over time their intimate time becomes short and repetitive. Take the time to light some candles, throw on some sensual music and engage in massages, sweet trailing kisses and passionate love making. Each person varies in what they enjoy, so tailor it to your partner. Enjoy the build up of the tease and shower your partner in respect and affection.
4. Learn to work as individuals.
Working as a team is important, but working as individuals carries the same importance. Ensure that while you are respectful of each other, that you are capable and confident individuals as well. Being able to be in the same room doing completely different tasks without feeling compelled to speak constantly can be difficult, but it is a sign of capable independence from your partner. Each person has their own interests that should be able to be enjoyed alone.
5. Work together to achieve common goals.
Working as an individual on your own projects is great, but with shared goals take the time to work together to strengthen your abilities of working as a team. These can be things as simple as cleaning the house, getting the groceries or walking the dogs. Larger projects are good too, starting a company, building up investments or home renovations. The only requirement is working together, teaching each other and respecting your partner.
6. Don’t forget the little things.
Over time couples can become complacent with showing small gestures of love and respect. It may seem inconsequential, but “pet names”, inside jokes and kind words go a long way to keep a loving feeling to your relationship. Small gestures like knocking the snow off your partners car, cleaning up the dishes or even making a coffee for your partner go a long way in showing your partner how much you care for them.
7. Resolve your arguments.
The old saying “don’t go to bed angry” is a good one to go by. Resolves your arguments, talk through and find the compromise required in the situation. Though it may take time and tempers are likely rising, try to remember that this is your partner, someone you love and respect and even while upset you should treat them that way. Going to bed angry, or leaving your partner during a fight do not allow for resolution to your issues, it only lets them fester.
8. Breathe first.
In moments of stress, anger or anguish we often reply emotionally instead of rationally. Just remember, breathe first. Breathe deeply before replying or making commentary, as it gives you a moment to compose yourself and think about how your words may affect your partner and yourself.
9. Make an effort every day to communicate.
Making an effort to ensure your partner has support everyday is very important. This doesn’t mean talking hours every day, but simply checking in with your partner and giving them positive attention and support will strengthen your relationship. It also reminds your partner of your commitment and support for each other.
10. Speak honestly.
We all know lying and keeping information from your partner can be harmful. Ensure you speak honestly, but not hurtfully to your partner. State the things you enjoy, the things you don’t like and behaviour you do or do not appreciate. Having honest and open communication with your partner is the foundation of a healthy relationship, and keeping discontent quiet allows issues to fester without being discussed or resolved.
In the end, attention, love, respect and honesty are the requirements for strong relationships. They take work and commitment that can be trying, tiring and difficult. The struggles along the way will ultimately become the points in your relationship that will bring you closer together.
If you have any comments or other ways to strengthen relationships, please put them in the comments!