Romantic relationships can be the most wonderful part about your life, but they can also be the worst. What are some things you can do in your relationship to move it towards the “wonderful” spectrum?.
1. Talk about your day.
In any relationship, sharing every day experiences can help both sides. The person sharing can get any frustrations or thoughts off of his/her chest and the listener gets to know more about the other person.
2. Play together.
One important thing you can do in your relationship is to have fun and be silly together. Find a sitcom you both enjoy or Google jokes to tell each other. We’ve all heard that the best medicine is laughter, right? You can also break out the board games and a bottle of wine for a night of playful competition.
3. Make food together.
Whether it’s cooking dinner or whipping up homemade chocolate chip cookies, food brings people together. You not only get to spend time together in the kitchen, but you also get to revel in the success of your dish and enjoy a meal together.
4. Define boundaries.
Whether you’ve been together five days, five weeks or five years, you might not be on the same page all of the time. You need to let the other person know what is and is not okay in regards to the relationship. This knowledge will allow you both to feel more relaxed, safe and comfortable.
5. Be honest.
Nothing hurts a relationship like a lie. It might not even be a huge deal, but the deception alone breaks trust that can be hard to recover. If you are feeling guilty about something, however small, it might be best to confess right away to ensure it doesn’t come up later.
6. Let go of the past
As a culprit for many potential arguments and the underlying issue for future ones, what happens in the past doesn’t always stay there. But it’s difficult to move forward in a relationship when you’re still thinking about past fights, problems, or issues that you’ve already resolved. If you find yourself continuing to dwell on the past, it might be a sign to take a step back and consider why.
Are you naturally less forgiving or is what happened something you can’t seem to forgive? By focusing on the reason for this recurring feeling, you’ll find more clarity within yourself and about what you want from the relationship with your partner.
7. Show your affection
From grabbing your partner’s hand at a restaurant to going to bed together at the end of the night, you know how you feel about your partner, but they should be able to feel it as well. Physical touch goes a long way in keeping romance and connection alive in long-term relationships.
Try to avoid physical touch routines, meaning the only physical touch in your daily life is a kiss goodbye or a hug hello (though these are also important gestures). In addition to your hellos and goodbyes, hug them unexpectedly, hold their hand in the car or while watching TV, or even just pat them on the arm to feel close. Physical closeness can translate to emotional closeness.
8. Learn your partner’s boundaries
Does your partner wish to be left alone when they’re upset? Do they mind that you want to text all day long, or do they prefer you call them when you’re apart at night? Is there a certain way they prefer to argue or certain topics they’re not comfortable discussing with you yet? These questions are simple, but the answers to them will help you understand your partner’s boundaries (and stop you from crossing them).
Overall, your partner’s needs are most likely different from yours, and knowing their boundaries is the best way to respect them. Have conversations to explain your boundaries to each other, but also pay attention and ask questions to understand them better.
9. Laugh together
Relationships are just friendships with exclusivity. Loving each other is crucial, and liking each other is important too. While the life-partner stuff (like dividing chores) or the romantic stuff (like holding hands) might be top priorities to improve your relationship, remember that the friendship stuff is just as important.
Laugh together at least once every day, whether it’s sharing a funny story that happened to you at the grocery store, bringing up an inside joke, or watching the show that makes you both laugh out loud. Laughing not only bonds us but also helps us remember that the point of being in a relationship is to enjoy the person we love.
10. Make time to focus on yourself
How we feel about ourselves is how we’ll act in a relationship. For example, if you lack confidence in yourself, you’ll look for assurance in your relationship, or if you don’t like to be alone with yourself, you’ll need to be around your significant other 24/7.
To prevent any toxic behaviors, it’s essential to have a strong sense of self: Invest in a new hobby, make plans with some friends, and take steps in discovering who you are as a person.
By falling in love with yourself, you’ll naturally become the best version of yourself for the person who is falling in love with you.