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If you want a thriving relationship, do these 10 things regularly

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“All you need is love”.

Nope.

If you want a thriving relationship, you’re going to need a lot more than that.

Here are 10 things you need to do regularly to keep your relationship alive and well:

1. Make sincere time for each other.

The two of you might spend hours sitting side by side on the couch, but that doesn’t mean you’re spending quality time together.

The key is to connect, even if just for a few minutes at a time.

For example, if your partner wants to talk to you about something important to them, give them your full attention.

There’s a huge difference between actively listening to the person you love and only paying half attention to them whilst scrolling through social media.

One of these things is important and the other is not.

Whenever you can, show your partner you care by setting everything else aside and making them the center of your world.

2. Be courteous in your speech and behavior.

Nothing hurts a relationship more than a lack of appreciation towards each other.

When someone does things for you, and you don’t acknowledge them, or you acknowledge them with criticism and disrespect, you’re telling them that the things they do for you don’t matter. That they don’t matter.

You can apologize or try to make amends after the fact, but over time, your discourtesy will irrevocably change the way they see you and will affect their actions towards you in the future.

You can apologize to a tree after cutting it down, but it’s not going to re-grow, is it?

3. Pay attention to what’s important to them.

A cornerstone of any relationship is finding out and embracing your partner’s passions.

So be observant about what they value, and make an effort to support their interests and hobbies accordingly.

Even if it’s not something you’re interested in, you can still show them that you embrace and encourage their interests, without having to engage extensively in them.

For example, let’s say your partner loves gardening but you’re not into it.

You don’t have to spend hours listening to them wax lyrical about flowers and shrubs, but you could find out their favorite species and buy them a plant, or two, to show you care.

4. Adapt to changes with loving grace.

Be prepared to change plans without petulance or complaint if your loved one isn’t feeling up to what you’d previously agreed.

Let’s say you organized a date night for Friday evening but your partner comes home from work shattered or has an intense headache. They don’t want to disappoint you by changing plans but also feel too wrecked to partake in them with real enthusiasm.

Of course, it’s natural to be disappointed but if you can change direction with compassion and understanding, it’ll go a very long way to showing your partner that you genuinely care about them, not just about what they can do for you.

5. Perform small, sweet gestures.

In simplest terms, don’t wait until you mess up to buy flowers.

People whose love language is acts of service or gift-giving will likely do this instinctively, but those who lean towards words of affirmation or physical affection often forget.

This is fine if your loved ones share your love languages, but if they appreciate little presents or actions, you need to put in the effort to make this happen on the regular.

For example, if your partner has a sweet tooth, surprise them with chocolate when you go out to run an errand, not just on their birthday or your anniversary.

6. Keep your word.

If you tell your loved one you’ll do something, do it.

A person’s word only has value if they keep it, and you’ll prove both your integrity and your commitment if you actually do what you said you’d do.

This may be as simple as taking care of a chore you agreed to do without being asked repeatedly or attending an event that’s important to your partner, even if you’re not really into it.

When you love someone, you do these things because you want them to be happy, not out of a sense of worn and grudging duty.

And if you don’t want to spend time doing things that make them feel happy, appreciated, and loved, what are you even doing with them?

7. Show patience (even when you don’t have much of it left).

We all experience situations in which our patience is left threadbare, but those are exactly the times when we need to show it the most.

It’s when you’re set to go nuclear in 0.02 seconds that you need to ground yourself and take a few deep breaths before responding. Nothing can be unsaid, and you may seriously regret whatever comes out of your mouth at that moment.

It’s always better to observe and analyze the situation from a detached perspective before jumping in.

Never agree to anything or discuss a difficult topic when you’re feeling out of control. Doing so will only create more hardship and tension between you.

8. Learn to control your own emotions (and reactions).

We can’t undo the damage caused when we’ve lost control of our emotions, so the key is to learn how to keep these in check.

One great technique for this is to take some alone time and visualize something you find calming or relaxing when you’re feeling overwhelmed.

I like to envision an ocean and time my breathing to the ebb and flow of the waves lapping on the shore.

After a few minutes of this, I feel refreshed and grounded, and whatever inner turmoil I’d been dealing with has lessened significantly.

If this isn’t your kind of thing, you can simply take yourself off and blast out your favorite song on your headphones or do 10-star jumps to let some of the pent-up energy out.

9. Check in with each other.

It cannot be stressed enough that regular communication is one of the most important things you need to establish and maintain a thriving relationship.

You need to communicate with your loved one regularly to ensure you’re both on the same page.

Take the time to discuss how satisfied both of you are feeling regarding time spent together, physical intimacy, and so on.

By doing this, you won’t end up blindsided by a major crisis because one of you didn’t realize that things were on the decline.

Approach this like project management and crisis aversion, so you can head off and deal with any potential issues while they’re still small and manageable.

10. Be honest about your feelings—with yourself and others.

How many people remain in half-dead relationships because they’re afraid of hurting the other person? Or conversely, they love someone dearly but are afraid of admitting their feelings because it would detract from the aloof persona they work hard to cultivate?

We never know how much time we have left, so we need to prioritize honesty in all our personal relationships—not just for our benefit, but for others as well.

If you care about someone, make a point of both telling and showing them this regularly.

Your relationship has a much better chance of thriving when real love and care are poured into it.

In contrast, if you aren’t prepared to put the work in to make this relationship thrive, it’s a pretty good sign there’s not much love there, so have the decency to cut them loose.

That way, they can at least pour their efforts into finding and developing a thriving relationship with someone who will love and appreciate them the way they deserve.

About The Author

Finn Robinson has spent the past few decades travelling the globe and honing his skills in bodywork, holistic health, and environmental stewardship. In his role as a personal trainer and fitness coach, he’s acted as an informal counselor to clients and friends alike, drawing upon his own life experience as well as his studies in both Eastern and Western philosophies. For him, every day is an opportunity to be of service to others in the hope of sowing seeds for a better world.