maintain a happy relationship
  • | October 5, 2016
Do you ever wonder how some couples maintain a happy relationship for the long haul, even after many years of being together? When the honeymoon phase of a relationship wears off, that initial infatuation two people feel for one another will either fade away or develop into a deeper bond; this is the point when they fall in love. Once you find yourself in love, however, how do you keep that feeling alive?

If you're in a relationship with that special someone and don’t want to see it fail, here are some guidelines for how to make it last:

  1. Love and appreciate yourself first. It may sound cliché, but if you can't love and honor yourself, how do you expect someone else to? Before entering into any kind of relationship, you need to be able to see and identify your own worth as an independent person. As the relationship progresses, it can be easy to lose track of that self-confidence as you immerse yourself in another's life. If you begin to doubt yourself, that doubt will manifest negatively in your relationship causing friction and stress, and the affection you're trying to foster between you and your partner will begin to deteriorate.

  2. Be kind to each other. According to marriage counselors, one of the top things that makes couples last longer is being kind and expressive to one other. This is often easier at the beginning of the relationship when you're invested in learning all you can about the other person, as well as flaunting your best self in an attempt to get them to return your affections. However, this motivation may fade as the relationship progresses. You may think that small, nice gestures like giving your partner flowers, opening her door, or helping her with a particular task don't matter as much as you move on together, but these actions do matter, and they will be deeply appreciated.

  3. Don’t focus too much on the minor flaws your partner has. On the opposite side of the spectrum, there are couples who fail to be together long-term not because they lose the motivation to be kind and invested in one another, but rather that they shift that focus to minor flaws. Examples of these flaws might include your partner leaving her laundry on the floor or constantly biting her nails Keep in mind no one is perfect, and there are most certainly things you do that irritate your partner, as well. Being able to manage and overlook these small annoyances will go a long way toward maintaining a peaceful, healthy relationship.

  4. Look for the good in your partner. In addition to avoiding a fixation on your partner's flaws, always take the time to remind yourself of why you first fell in love with her and what continues to attract you to her. Rather than complaining about the little things she does that get under your skin, come up with kind words and actions to express your recognition of her worth and value as a person and partner. Taking the time to reflect on these positive aspects of your relationship and relaying your appreciation of them verbally will make her feel at ease, secure, and comfortable by your side.

  5. Spend quality time together. Many relationships nowadays end because the couple grows more and more distant from each other, both physically and mentally. If you fail to express your love and your partner starts to feel neglected, they will being to withdraw from you and may even start to look elsewhere to fill their needs. We all need moments of intimacy to feel truly connected to another person, whether it's physical intimacy (like cuddling or even sex) or emotional intimacy (like holding a heartfelt conversation over a homemade dinner). Whatever form of intimacy you and your partner enjoy, it's important not to let that intimacy fade because once it does, it's difficult to get it back, and attempting to do so may be the final nail in the coffin of your relationship.

Something as hard to define as "love" is surely as difficult to develop and maintain. If you want to avoid falling out of love with the woman in your life, you'll have to put in the necessary leg work. It's possible that the relationship may still fall apart on its own, but with a little dedication and caretaking of yourself, your partner, and your life together, you definitely have a fighting chance.

Good luck!