7 Ways to Make the MOST of the Relationship You’ve Got
Happiness is having what you want, and wanting what you have ~ Josh Bullings
When you first meet someone you really like and this time the feeling is mutual – it can be a bit of a whirlwind. It’s easy to see all the things you like about them. It’s easy to spend time with them and for it be exciting, surprising, and fun. And, once things start to transition over to something a little more serious – sometimes the relationship can lose it’s original sheen. You have your first argument. You start doing the things that you were doing before you got caught up in the romance. Things start to settle down a bit. So, what can you do to keep that relationship alive, happy, and still exciting? How can you really make the MOST of the relationship that you’ve got? Here are a few key tips (7 actually) that will help keep you on the right track.
Ok, so it sounds so cliché BUT it’s really important, so I’m going to remind you anyways. Remember to stay true to yourself and your values. I could also say it like this: “You have a freak flag – so let it fly”. Don’t try to be something that you are not. Don’t try and mould yourself into some fantasy version of a man that your girlfriend wants. You may think, “If can change this one thing – then she will be happy”. But the problem with that is – you make one change and then she will want to change something else. And, then at the end of the day you won’t know who you are and she won’t know who you are either. Make sure that if you want to make more positive changes about yourself or in your life that you are in alignment with what you really value and not just because you “think” it will make the relationship better. When you stay true to yourself and what’s important to you – you have more to offer the relationship. Have the courage to stand up for what you believe in and when the opportunity arises choose the option that feels best for you and most true for you.
2.The most important relationship is with yourself.
**Newsflash** You make up one half of the relationship. Therefore, if you neglect yourself then you are also neglecting your relationship. In other words, it’s hard to fill up another bucket when your own bucket is empty. Make sure to clear time for you to recharge and feel good. Spend time playing that sport that you enjoy. Spend time with friends that you really enjoy the company of. Spend time pursuing the things in your life that are really important to you. Block out time for just chilling and relaxing from the stress of your everyday life. All of these things help you fill up your own bucket which can then overflow into your relationship.
3.More isn’t always better.
Some people think that in order to have a great relationship you have to dedicate a large proportion of your life to it. And, while it’s true that in order to have a great relationship you need to make it a higher priority in your life it doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to spend every waking moment with this person. What actually helps create more of a fulfilling relationship is dedicated quality time with your partner. When interacting with that person in meaningful ways is the sole focus of that minute, hour, or night – the rewards are very enriching. It could involve a special date night every week. Or it could even be those 15 minutes of dedicated couple time before the two of you get ready for work. It’s important to prioritize this time in your relationship otherwise it’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of everyday life and miss out on these magical and meaningful moments with your partner.
Don’t let fear take hold when insecurities or past hurts come up. At times when you want to hold back or use emotional weapon instead breathe, take a step back, and don’t let the fear get the best of you. Do your best to be present and respond to the situation in front of you and not the one in your head. Do your best to use this relationship as an opportunity to conquer your fears and heal past hurts. Every relationship you have gives you an opportunity to learn, grow, and especially heal.
5.Communicate with openness.
Any form of communication is interpreted through the filter of your partner’s perception. You might say something really harmless, but because it touches on insecurity or a touchy subject – it could lead to an overreaction. Each partner should take the time to communicate as openly as possible. Truly listen. Give each other room to say what the other person needs to say without interjecting, defending, or accusing. Most things can be worked out via proper open communication. But the most important thing is to keep those lines open!
6. Be selective about what your focus on.
You want to do your best to focus on the things that please you rather than displease you about your partner and the relationship. When you first meet someone it’s easy to see all their positive aspects. Call it the honeymoon phase. But once you have transitioned past this stage – little things can really annoy you about your partner. During this time – it’s important to consciously put effort into the things that you appreciate about your partner. Or at least don’t make such a big deal out of the things that do bother you and focus on things that make you feel good about them. As you focus on the things that you like about your partner the more things you will have to appreciate about them and vice versa.
7. Expect the unexpected.
Sometimes relationships can get a little dull or boring because you get stuck in a kind of relationship rut. You think you know each other so well that there seems to be nothing exciting about the other person and the relationship that you are in. When you come from a perspective that your partner continues to surprise you with their little quirks, with their personality, and with their growth – then you set the stage for a sense of excitement and newness to be more present in the relationship. When you come from the premise that you may NEVER truly know who your partner is because they are always changing, growing, and evolving you leave the door open to new experiences, anticipation, and an eagerness to get to know them even more. Practical ways to apply this could be a game where the two of you ask each other questions that you have never asked each other before. They could be light hearted or they could be more meaningful ones. It’s also good to try things that the BOTH of you have never done before. That way you can experience something new together and bond through that experience.
And, because I’m not really a fan of writing endings to blog posts right now – I will again leave you this quote:
We met for a reason – you are either a blessing or a lesson ~ Frank Ocean
And, I would add … that every lesson is a blessing …
I’ve had my say, now it’s your turn,