Our Top Tips to Strengthen Any Relationship
Let’s be honest; relationships aren’t always easy. In fact, they can be minefields to navigate as you attempt to manage your own happiness as well as the happiness of your partner. At the start of a relationship, you will probably find yourself infatuated with each other. Eventually, however, the initial attraction itself can eventually wear off as you become accustomed to the additional person in your life. This may have resulted in your relationship becoming stale, and perhaps you have started to drift apart. When this happens, you and/or your partner could begin to feel isolated, unloved and unhappy. If you have joint commitments such as work, children or friendship circles, it can leave you both with very little time to connect with each other. Before you know it, you may feel like you don’t know each other anymore. This is a critical point for relationships, as you or your partner may seek comfort or companionship elsewhere.
If this happens, you may find it extremely difficult to forgive and move on. However, I have helped a lot of couples through couples’ therapy who want to go back to being happy, whether that’s for their children or just because underneath it all they still love each other. If you have been hurt, or you are worried that your partner is drifting away, I’ve created this list of things to go to try to protect your relationship.
One of the most common reasons for a failing relationship is communication. Without the ability to talk openly with each other, you will find it very difficult to maintain a healthy relationship. Both parties need to respect each other and take time to understand struggles, issues and concerns. Men can especially find open communication difficult. This is likely due to the perceived image of masculinity, and as a result, they struggle to open up and articulate their feelings. Remember to be open and supportive, even when it’s difficult to do so. If you want to kickstart your relationship, your partner needs to be able to talk to you without fear of conflict.
Communication also requires focus and concentration. In today’s technological age that can be easier said than done, with many of us glued to our phones or other electronic devices. You need to make sure you talk to each other without these distractions. One suggestion would be to choose a dedicated night or day of the week where you and your partner spend time talking or perhaps even going out. This gives you both the chance to rediscover each other once again, whilst also giving you the opportunity to discuss and work through any issues that have been building up. A person will feel more loved if you pay attention to their life rather than ignore it. You can do this through your body language as well. If your partner is talking to you, don’t look at your phone, pay attention to them and look them in the eyes. If you are looking elsewhere, they may feel like you don’t care about what they have to say.
Therapy can also be used to open up communication between two people. If you can’t find yourself talking without screaming at each other, then therapy may be the option for you. Couples therapy can provide an outsider’s perspective on your situation and give you a space place to talk openly with each other. Therapists are unlikely to place judgement or bias and have usually gone through similar situations with hundreds of other couples. This means that they can provide experienced advice, that is still tried and tested and proven to improve relationships, or help you both to accept it is best to part ways.
Prioritise the Relationship
Life can be busy. You have work, social life and maybe even kids who take up your time. You probably even need to schedule some time for you to relax and de-stress. So where can you find the time to fix your relationship? Constantly choosing other things, or people, over your partner, can make it much worse, leaving them to feel discarded and unloved. Your partner maythink that you no longer want them. You need to organise your life better and make sure you don’t push your partner away.
To fix this problem try to do the things that you enjoyed at the start of your relationship. Show each other appreciation, compliments, and contact each other throughout the day. Showing interest in each other lets the other person know you want this relationship, even if you can’t see them as much as you would like. Plan date nights for each other. Even if you have to let your friends down now and then it may be what’s needed to show your partner that you are prioritising the relationship. Schedule it in the calendar just as you would with any other significant event in your life.
Plan some time to concentrate on being together. By being together, I mean more than just sitting in the same room. Physical contact is very important in a relationship. Over time you may find that you don’t cuddle at night or hold hands when walking like you used to. Make time to kiss each other goodnight and do the little things that show affection. If your partner seems to be unreceptive consider the reasons why – Are they tired? Has work been stressful? Is there something you may have said that upset them? By asking yourself these questions, you can plan a better path to move forward. For example, if your partner always seems irritable when they get home from work try cooking the evening meal for them and asking about their day. Sometimes all they need is an opportunity to rant.
A healthy and regular sex life is also important for a happy and faithful relationship. Whether it is because you have little time or are too tired at the end of the day, it can sometimes make your partner feel unattractive. Try to make an extra effort with your partner as it can help to bring you closer.
Therapy can also help to make your relationship more intimate. A therapist will understand your busy lifestyle and provide advice to help you prioritise your relationship and bring back the closeness. They will know how hard and stressful it may be, but also your desire to make the relationship work. With open honesty and a willingness to change, both you and your partner can make the changes necessary to make time for each other.
Making sure your partner knows that you love and appreciate them is the first big step in preventing a cheating partner. Remember that you cannot control what your partner does but you can try to keep the relationship healthy. Scheduling time to see each other and always giving them the attention they need in a relationship shows them you care. And by doing this you are setting a standard for them too. If you think you could benefit from relationship therapy, then contact me today.