Whether you’re in a long-term relationship or have been dating one person for some time now, it’s normal to want to look for ways to make the relationship better.
Unlike what is normally portrayed in movies, maintaining a relationship takes a lot of hard work and commitment. Recent studies show that 70% of couples are more likely to break up within the first year of a relationship.
So, why is it so difficult for relationships to last? Truthfully, maintaining your relationship shouldn’t be a difficult task. But it can get challenging, especially when juggling other aspects of your daily life.
And, in some events, it can be difficult to prioritize your relationship and your partner. Nonetheless, it would be best if you always made an effort. Fortunately, these tips will help deepen your bond, strengthen your relationship, and keep you going for the long haul.
#1 Learn to spend time apart
This might be confusing. After all, doesn’t it seem counterintuitive, especially when it’s good to spend quality time with your partner?
While it’s good to want to be together, everyone involved needs to have their own space where they can be alone. It’s perfectly okay to have some breathing room. Many dating and marriage experts advocate for this tip because you need to make time for your personal growth and development.
You must also be independent and have a life outside of your relationship. It could be anything, whether going for a walk, hanging out with a friend, or catching up on your hobbies.
Another benefit is that it leaves you feeling refreshed and more patient with your partner. You can have conversations better, and it can help you appreciate the time you spend with your special ones when you miss them. Plus, it’s always fun when you share your experiences while you are away with your partner.
#2 Embrace vulnerability
Many struggle with being vulnerable in relationships, mainly out of fear of being rejected or mocked. But failing to open up to your partner can cause your relationship to deteriorate, as they would feel undervalued or assume you don’t believe in their ability to hear you out and help.
There are different ways to show vulnerability in your relationships. Simply asking for help is one sign. When you admit to your partner that you need help or a pillar of support when you are struggling, it can create an avenue for you to grow closer and truly know one another.
You must also be willing to express your feelings and thoughts, whether you are sad, happy, or upset. It shows that you are in touch with yourself and not afraid to share who you are with your significant other.
Although being vulnerable can cause a lot of anxiety and some uncertainty, it can also help in deepening your bond and intimacy. Whether you or your partner struggles with opening, you must understand that it’s not an easy thing to do and requires patience.
#3 Designate regular dates
Dates are a great way to head out and enjoy time with your partner outside your usual activities. It is also a great way to keep your relationship lively and engaging, especially when you’ve been in one for many years.
Also, you and your partner get to spend enough time bonding. The best thing about having regular dates is that it can be a fun way to unwind. You don’t have to spend much money to achieve that. Instead, you can mix it up with other fun activities, from taking a refreshing walk or heading to a concert together.
You can use your dates to also talk to each other. Communication is very important, especially if you want your relationship to thrive. They allow you to focus on each other, and you might fall in love with your partner all over again.
It can be difficult to have regular dates, especially when you have a busy schedule filled with work, kids, and many other activities. To make this easier for you and your partner, you must agree on the best time, weekly or monthly. Alternatively, you can plan something that revolves around your busy schedules.
It could be as simple as having lunch together during your lunch breaks. Fortunately, there are many ideas, so you will never run short of suggestions. Don’t look at regular dates as a chore, but instead as a chance to catch up with your partner and do the things you love together.
#4 Give gifts
Giving gifts is crucial in all successful relationships, and you probably always do it on special occasions. Giving or receiving gifts doesn’t mean you or your partner are worldly, vain or materialistic. Instead, it is the best way to express yourself when words cannot. Sometimes, you don’t have to wait until an anniversary, birthday, or even an apology to show how much your partner means to you.
If they love to write, you can pick up a new journal or notebook if you’ve noticed they’re running out of pages in their old one.
Or it could be a simple jewelry piece you’ve seen them eying. Jewelry like silver rings, earrings, necklaces, and bracelets are all lovely gifts to show your partner that you care for them. Giving your partner a gift is also a great way of creating beautiful memories they will cherish forever. And it is a sign that you listen to each other. Your gifts don’t always have to be expensive. It’s the thought that always counts.
#5 Accept that disagreements and fights happen
As much as you wouldn’t want to fight with your partner, the earlier you accept that fights and disagreements occur, the better. Conflict is not an inherently bad thing. It can create some beautiful resolutions.
So, fights will happen, but how you go about and resolve them for the growth and stability of your relationship is more important. What can you do when you fight with your partner? The first thing you must remember is that it’s not always about what you say but how you say it. A fight or disagreement doesn’t mean you have to be rude or mean.
Instead, be polite when expressing your views and speak as gently as possible. Try as much as possible to think before you speak, especially because words hurt, and even if you apologize later, the damage has already been done.
#6 Be affectionate with each other
It might seem small and inconsequential, but showing affection toward your partner can make your relationship more successful.
The beauty of showing your love and affection is that it doesn’t require any grand gestures. Instead, it’s those little affirmations that keep your relationship thriving. There are various ways to show your affection for your lover.
You can lend a listening ear even when they want to talk about something trivial, like how much they hated their lunch. Or it could be for something big or sensitive, a personal struggle or issue they might be dealing with.
You must also show kindness, whether giving them foot rubs after a long day or cooking their favorite dinner randomly. These small gestures show that you love them and that they are always at the forefront of your mind. Physical touch is also essential, so try to incorporate that into your daily activities, whether a quick kiss on the lips or holding hands while walking around town.
#7 Don’t hold on to the past
Sometimes, it can get difficult to let go of the past, especially a fight or argument or anything that hurt you deeply.
It sometimes presents a problem after the matter or issue has been resolved. If you find yourself dwelling on the past, it’s usually a good sign to reflect on why that particular event still bothers you. It could be due to several reasons.
Perhaps you’re not as forgiving as you are, or you aren’t completely satisfied with how the issue was resolved. If this happens more frequently, it might be time to think about your relationship or have an honest discussion with your partner to close that chapter.
If there are ways your partner could make it up to you to gain your forgiveness, it will be great to let them know or work on finding a solution together.
#8 Ask your partner new questions
It’s natural for things to get stale in a long-term relationship, including your communication. But communication is one of the crucial determinants of a successful relationship. Sure, it’s nice to ask mundane, everyday questions like wanting to know how their day went.
But that’s when you should listen to what they say and branch into other deeper topics and conversations. You can also start new discussions altogether. It could be on current events or updates on something you or your partner enjoy doing.
Relationships need a lot of work to survive. Hopefully, you can pick up a few tips on keeping things alive and having a high-quality relationship. Good luck with your relationship.