Relationships are great, but it’s easy to start feeling lost in it all.
Being part of a couple can make you forget who you are as an individual.
While you are someone’s partner, you are also much more than that. Other aspects of your life shouldn’t be neglected when you are in a relationship.
Focusing on yourself doesn’t make you selfish. As long as you communicate with your partner about your needs, they should be able to respect your need for time away from them.
Here are some things that you could do to focus on yourself while in a relationship.
1. Spend enough time alone.
There’s no right or wrong amount of alone time that you should have in a relationship. It all comes down to how much you feel you need.
Let your partner in on what exactly you’ll be doing during your time away from them. They should respect your need for alone time, but keep them in the loop and don’t neglect to spend time with them either.
When you’d rather stay at home and do your thing, don’t make it sound like you’re not happy in the relationship. Reassure your partner that you still enjoy spending time with them. You just have your own needs that you need to take care of.
Give your partner as much alone time as they need too. A certain level of independence is desirable in a relationship. You can both have your own passions and dedicate as much time to them as you’d like.
Working out has endless benefits. One of the biggest is the impact that keeping fit has on your self-esteem. Exercising feels good, even when it’s difficult. So by taking care of your body, you’re taking care of your mind too.
You can join the gym if you want to focus on yourself. Exercising keeps your body healthy and makes you feel more attractive. It is good for you and your relationship.
You don’t have to do everything alone when you’re focusing on yourself. If your partner wants to, you could work out together. However, make sure that the primary reason is the exercise itself and not to spend more time together.
Getting in shape could make you feel great, and hard work in the gym truly pays off. Remember to also get enough sleep, eat healthily, and drink plenty of water. These are simple things that could turn your life around if you’ve been neglecting them.
3. Nurture your friendships.
People often neglect their friendships when they get into a new relationship. When the initial excitement wears off, however, you might miss hanging out with your friends.
Reconnect with them and spend time together. Nurture your friendships when you’re in a relationship.
Go out with your friends and do some of the things that you used to do when you were single. Maybe you don’t have as much time for your friends as you used to, but you can still make some time.
Make sure that these are your friends from before your relationship, not the friends you and your partner hang out with together.
4. Try new things.
Trying new things is always a good idea. Take a class and learn something new, or try a new meal in a restaurant. Paint, write, try gardening or cook a new meal. Go to new places and meet new people.
Do something differently every day. Go to a different grocery store or take a different route when you’re going home from work. Learn a new language or play an instrument. Change the furniture in your home and redecorate your office.
Make sure to keep exploring and widening your horizons. Befriend a variety of different people because you can learn something from everyone. Watch a different genre of movie than you usually do, read a book, or discover new music.
Focus on yourself by learning and experiencing something new every day.
5. Set goals.
Every couple has relationship goals, whether it’s to move in together or grow old together. You will plan your future with your partner, and that’s great!
However, remind yourself of your personal goals too. They might not be the same as they were before you were in a relationship. But, think about whether there are some goals from back then that you still want to pursue. Consider what new goals you need right now too.
Set goals that are unrelated to your relationship and strive to achieve them. Maybe you want to start your own business, lose weight, or quit smoking.
Set short-term and long-term goals and break them down into steps that you need to take to accomplish them. You can get closer to your goals every day by taking a small step toward the future that you want.
Maybe you want to be your partner’s spouse and/or a parent. But what else do you want that has nothing to do with your love life?
6. Spend time on your hobbies.
If you had a hobby before you were in a relationship, pick up where you left off. Or start a new hobby if you didn’t have one before.
It could be gardening, reading, cooking, or even playing video games. Take dancing lessons, acting classes, or make pottery. Start a collection and learn more about the things you’re passionate about. Make jewelry, soaps, or candles. Learn a new language or learn to code.
There’s an endless list of hobbies that you could try. Find your passion and dedicate some of your time to that passion.
You and your partner could have common interests that turn into hobbies. That’s okay, but you need to have something you do on your own too. It should be something you enjoy doing without your partner.
A hobby should make you feel fulfilled and happy. So, pick something that matches your interests.
7. Practice self-care and self-love.
Eating healthy, exercising, and repeating words of affirmation aren’t the only ways you can practice self-care and self-love.
Look around your home. If it’s not full of things that make you happy and represent good memories, haver a clear out and get rid of things that you don’t need.
Enjoy small moments of your day and make them more special. You could light a candle while you’re relaxing or play music while you’re in the shower.
Find a cause worth fighting for and try volunteering. Spend time in nature and take pictures. Adopt a pet or take care of a plant. Remind yourself to smile whenever you remember to.
Find more ways to express yourself, pamper yourself, and simply feel good about being you and being alive.
8. Take care of your health.
Regular visits to the doctor, dentist, and any other person in charge of maintaining your health are important. Be sure to follow your doctor’s instructions if you have an existing health issue.
Take care of your health by eating a balanced diet, getting enough sleep, exercising, and drinking enough water.
Take care of your mental health just the same as you take care of your physical health. Talk to a therapist if you’re experiencing any mental health problems or simply need someone to talk to.
Take care of your hair, skin, and nails too. Taking care of your health doesn’t have to be about a visit to a doctor; it could be about a spa day now and then. Make sure that your body and spirit are both healthy.
9. Write things down.
Start journaling and writing your goals down. Journaling can be a great way to process your thoughts and feelings, while writing your goals down keeps you motivated. Write down the things you need to do during the day too.
Write a poem, an article, or a short story when you’re inspired. Writing is good for you, even if you’re not that good at it. It’s a great hobby and a way to express yourself. You can write about anything that you want.
Keeping a journal also gives you some privacy when you’re in a relationship. No one should read your journal but you. It is where you can write whatever it is that comes out when you put pen to paper.
If you are good at writing, it can also be a useful skill and a tool that can help you in many areas of your life. If you’re not yet that good, know that you can get good at something by practicing and being persistent.
Find a calm, quiet place and get yourself in a comfortable position. Close your eyes and focus on your breathing. Notice when your mind wanders away from your breath. Realize the thought, don’t judge yourself for it, and let it go. Go back to focusing on your breath and stay still in the position you chose.
Do this for 5 or 10 minutes and you have officially meditated! It’s that easy, and it helps relieve stress while keeping you focused on the present.
You could listen to a guided meditation or simply enjoy nature sounds while you meditate. Set aside 5 to 10 minutes each day to meditate and it will become a healthy habit and a great way to focus on yourself in a relationship.
11. Focus on your career.
Working toward a promotion or preparing for a new job opportunity are also ways you can focus on yourself.
If you like what you do for a living, find ways to become even better at it. If you don’t like your job, see if there’s a way you could get closer to your dream job. Maybe you could learn some new skills, and it could start as a hobby. Maybe you could even start your own business.
Don’t forget about your career when you’re in a relationship. Being successful at what you do can make you feel accomplished and fulfilled. Finding fulfillment outside of the relationship is good for you and the relationship.
Plus, it couldn’t hurt to be financially stable. Take care of your finances and try to save money.
12. Work on improving yourself.
Would you like to be more independent, positive, attractive, and confident? You can be! It just takes some time and effort.
People are supposed to change and grow, but they only do when they work on themselves.
In a healthy relationship, you are going to grow together as a couple, but you’ll grow as individuals as well. Keep improving. If there is anything that you don’t like about yourself or think could be better, work on it.
If your relationship is healthy, it should even inspire and nurture your growth. Your partner should support you in becoming the best version of yourself.
Read articles and self-help books and implement the things you learn about. Talk to a therapist if you need extra help in becoming the person you want to be. You can do it; it will just take some time and effort.
13. Don’t compare yourself to others or care too much about what people think.
Comparing yourself to others leads to unrealistic expectations. You are unique, and you should focus on what makes you you.
Don’t be fooled by perfect pictures on social media or the unrealistic beauty presented by the media. You don’t have to be the same as someone else In fact, you shouldn’t be.
Also, you shouldn’t care too much about what other people think. Focus on what you want to do, not what anyone else wants to do.
Worrying about what other people might think is just a waste of energy. Do what you think is right. It doesn’t matter if what’s right for you isn’t right for someone else or the other way around. We are all different in our unique ways.
14. Meet new people.
As you already learned, you should befriend a variety of different people. There’s something to learn from everyone.
You don’t have to be close friends with everyone, and sometimes just interacting with new people feels good. Smile to a passerby and be kind to the clerk at the store. Help an older person cross the street and wish your neighbor a good day. Keep interacting with people and meeting new ones when you’re in a relationship.
When two people fall in love, they can focus so much on each other that they become isolated from the rest of the world. You’re not searching for a new partner, but that doesn’t mean that you should stop meeting new people. Go out and have fun with your friends, you might find new friends too.
15. Smile and laugh.
Humor feels good and makes you happy. It helps you relax and fight stress. Laughing is good for you and it can be contagious. So, make sure to have fun every now and then.
Be positive and make an effort to smile more often. By smiling and laughing, you are spreading happiness around you and increasing your own. Maybe your partner makes you laugh, but you should laugh when they’re not around too.
Enjoy life and try to find happiness. A good sense of humor could get you through the toughest of times, and laughter is really like medicine.
When you have negative thoughts, challenge them and try to see the lighter side of things. People who can look at the brighter side of life are generally happier.
16. Take breaks.
It’s okay to take a break – from work, from your partner, from everyday life…
When you need to take a break, ask for one and have one. Do something relaxing that will allow you to feel reenergized.
You could take a nap, drink tea, listen to music, read a book, or watch your favorite TV show. Play with your pet if you have one. Take breaks to just enjoy the day and feel rested. Have a spa day at home or go get a massage. Pamper yourself a bit and take things slow.
You might be tempted to spend most of your time with your partner, but you need to take a break from them sometimes too. Let them know about your needs and ask for some time to just take care of yourself.
As long as you don’t make it sound like you want to break up with them, they won’t mind giving you a few hours or days to just do your thing.
17. Turn off your devices.
If you spend a lot of time on your phone, laptop, and other devices, make sure to unplug sometimes. Pretend that the electricity has gone out and just enjoy the technology-free time.
Social media can wait. Text messages can wait. That TV show you’re binge-watching can wait.
Your partner will understand if you let them know that you’ll be unavailable for a few hours. Enjoy the silence and light some candles instead of turning on the lights.
Be at peace and feel good in your own company. This is a great opportunity to meditate or just relax and listen to music.
Remind yourself that you have enough time for this and everything else that you want to do. You can make time for yourself. And sometimes, you need time away from everyone.
18. Learn to say no.
Set boundaries and learn to say no to people. It’s okay to be firm and a little selfish, but stay courteous and assertive.
People who don’t know how to say no often find themselves overwhelmed with the number of things they need to do for other people. You are allowed to reject giving favors that would leave you burnt out.
If you don’t feel like hanging out with your friends, family, or even your partner, it’s okay to say no. Don’t feel guilty about being selfish sometimes. You have to think of yourself and take care of your needs before you can focus on those of other people.
19. Do things that make you happy.
Focusing on yourself can mean just feeling good about yourself and doing what makes you happy.
This might involve taking a long hot bath after a hard day of work or opening up a bottle of bubbles to celebrate an accomplishment.
It might also mean reading a book, listening to your favorite songs and singing along, taking a walk, enjoying a glass of wine with gourmet cheeses, or putting on a face mask and listening to nature sounds.
Find the time to do what makes you happy. Express yourself in creative ways by painting, drawing, writing a poem, or playing an instrument. You can dance and sing out loud just because it feels good.
You’re allowed to do whatever it is that makes you happy, and it’s okay to ask your partner for time to do that.
20. Talk to a therapist.
Focusing on yourself can also mean addressing unresolved issues and getting rid of baggage. If you want to move forward in life, don’t let your past hold you back.
If you have any problems that are still standing in the way of your happiness, talk about them to a therapist.
A part of taking care of yourself is asking for help when you need help. If you want to improve yourself, you could use someone who can keep you going in the right direction. Talk to a therapist about who you were and who you want to be, and let them help you get there.
BetterHelp.com is a website where you can connect with a therapist via phone, video, or instant message.
Dealing with your problems is also good for your relationship. Your partner could give you support in getting help and becoming the best version of yourself.
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