You Have to Make an Effort
I’m not going to lie: building a better relationship takes effort. And if your relationship is starting to feel stale, you are going to have to work on making it better. The good news is that you don’t have to make grand gestures or spend a ton of money or time to rekindle the connection you once had.
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It’s all about the little things. Little things can make a huge impact. Here are my top three little habits that build a better relationship.
- Back Up Your Words
As a writer I can tell you that even if you are gifted at putting pen to paper, you won’t be able to make your partner swoon if you don’t put any heart behind the sentiment. Loving words are nice to hear, but small meaningful gestures go a lot further, so back up your loving words with actions. This will maintain and sustain your relationship past initial infatuation. And if you are no Shakespeare when it comes to words, know that a good hug, a lingering kiss or a romantic night for two will mean a lot to them.
- Remember That Some Things Never Get Old
There is a misconception that love must always stay fresh and feel new to maintain its spark. That simply isn’t true. Look at it this way: Don’t you have a favorite dessert or meal that hits the right spot and satisfies your cravings every time? How would you feel if someone changed that recipe? You’d probably be more than a little annoyed. That’s because you love what’s reliable and familiar. Love can be that way too. Whether it’s that midday text just to say “hi,” holding hands while walking, or cuddling in bed as you drift off to sleep, it’s important not to discount the familiar behaviors that make love amazing. Some things never get old, including the old familiar ways we love and are loved.
- Don’t Be So Quick to React
Even couples who are deeply in love fight, and fight hard. When we feel attacked, we have the urge to defend ourselves right away. But there’s a better way. Use silence to your advantage instead. When arguing with your partner, don’t respond to their heated words right away. Take a few seconds of silence. This accomplishes a few things:
A. It gives your partner a chance to think about what they’ve just said. They may apologize or further explain.
B. It shows that you are listening to what they say and not just waiting to react. Your partner will feel heard.
C. It gives you time to think about what you want to say. Carefully construct your words.
D. It will keep you both on topic, rather than let emotions wildly spin you off topic.
Remember, it’s the Little Things
Remember the little things if you want to build a better relationship. So cancel the 12 dozen roses, the hour-long carriage ride or the serenade from their favorite pop star. Just be loving, consistent and demonstrative in little, familiar ways.