We all want to be in healthy relationships, but the majority of us haven’t been taught what it entails. Here are my top suggestions for how to establish a good, healthy relationship as a therapist with more than ten years of experience working with couples. Being proactive and open to communication is crucial.
1. Carry out actions you took during your first year of dating
We tend to slip into our metaphorical sweatpants and become complacent in our relationship as the months and years pass. We stop being patient, kind, kind, empathetic, and generally trying harder to be there for our partners. Write down everything you did for your lover during the first year of your relationship. Start executing them once more.
2. Make your request
Over time, we develop the belief that our partner understands us so well that we don’t need to express our needs. What results from this supposition? Expectations are raised and then promptly dashed. We can start to doubt the strength of our relationship and collaboration as a result of those unmet expectations. Remember that “asking for what you want” encompasses both emotional and sexual desires.
3. Gain expertise about your companion
Consider the true nature of your partner and the things that thrill them both physically and emotionally. Instead of tuning in to what genuinely resonates with people, we can become preoccupied with what we believe they want. Keep in mind that something doesn’t have to make sense to you if it’s significant to your partner. You simply have to act.
4. Don’t limit your questions to “How was your day?”
We frequently psychologically check out of our lives after a long day, which negatively affects our relationships. We use the common inquiry, “How was your day?” But because we hear that question so frequently, many of us will automatically just say, “Fine. How did yours go? “Because you’re losing the chance to occasionally connect in a little way, this does nothing to strengthen your relationship and may even make it worse.
5. Establish a habit of communicating with one another once a week
It can be brief or extensive, but it always starts with discussing what went well and poorly during the previous week and what might be done differently the following week. Additionally, take advantage of this chance to discuss your plans, set up a date night, and agree on what you want your relationship to look like over the next few days, weeks, and months. Unmet demands and resentment can grow without a planned meeting to take the temperature.
6. Keep it sexy, please
What would happen to your relationship if you and your partner made a commitment to upping the sexy behaviors you both find and reducing the ones you don’t? Consider this in its fullest sense. “Sexy” can obviously allude to sexual preferences such as trying new things and gadgets in the bedroom. Check for sexual toys here. But it can also refer to the aspects of our partner that excite us in daily life. Do you think it’s attractive if they assist with housework? Do you think it’s inappropriate when people use the restroom with the door ajar? Discuss the specifics of “keeping it hot” in your relationship. Be amazed, amused, and motivated.
7. Every day, go on a (mental) vacation
Distractions from life and work often take precedence in our thinking, leaving little time or energy for our relationship. Use the “Wearing the Relationship Hat” technique. This means that when we’re with our partners, we’re entirely present unless there are any emergencies or deadlines. We actually listen to what people are saying (as opposed to just pretending to), we put our phones down, and we don’t take them back up until it is time to go for the day.
Recognize your partner’s pain. A sincere apology from this position can make a big difference. Regardless of your point of view on what you did or did not do, you can always legitimately apologize when you love your spouse and harmed them (whether intentionally or not).