When you make a commitment to someone, you want it to last. While looking good and providing financial security are key elements to a successful relationship, making memories and sharing are just as important.
1. Leave the drama at the door. Make your mate feel comfortable around you. And if you do fuss, do so fairly. Don’t call him/her names. Don’t threaten him/her. Listen. Don’t interrupt. If you are too upset to be calm and cool, go to another part of the house until you can calm down.
2. Work on being compassionate, not judgmental. When you judge someone, you build a wall. Slow your roll and think about what you are going to say – in other words, don’t react… respond. Instead of saying, “You moron, why didn’t you call ahead first to make sure they had the part?” Try a response like this: “Honey, next time, maybe it would be best if we called ahead first.”
3. Separate your emotions from the facts. When feelings get involved in a discussion, it becomes elevated because we are likely to bring in all the luggage from the past. Look at the facts and you may see things clearer and may even see your partner’s side of the story.
4. Don’t make assumptions. Ask questions and clarify what really went down or was said.
5. Time is of the essence. You absolutely have to make time for your mate. That’s where the concept of “date night” came from for couples that have been in long-term relationships. You don’t want to get into a rut where you don’t do the things that attracted you two in the first place. Explore things together, and be open to doing things that he/she likes. It shows that other person that you do care. One week go do something he/she likes and the next week, it’s your choice.
6. Express yourself. It’s important to show your partner that you care, but you also have to say it. Say, “I’m sorry you had a bad day,” not, “What the hell is wrong with you?” Go with Stevie Wonder and just call to say, “I love you.”
7. Observe. Be aware. And use those observations to be romantic. For example, if you are sitting and watching TV and a commercial comes on for the new B.o.B. CD and your man leans forward like he’s interested, surprise him by stopping on the way home and picking up a copy for him.
Little things can go a long way. Make an effort to express your love and desire on a regular basis and you can cultivate a loving relationship that will last a lifetime.