When we talk about relationships, we tend to think about a being in a couple. But actually, any relationship can be worked on to improve –even if it’s pretty good already.
Two friends, a relationship with a work colleague, mother and daughter, father and son, and of course, the partner you pick to (hopefully) spend your life with – all of these need nurturing as they wind their way along the (sometimes smooth, sometimes rocky) road known as a relationship.
So let’s take a look at some easy to put into practice tips to improve a relationship – whatever it’s current state…
Look after yourself:
Funny, hey, that the first thing we put in this list doesn’t seem to have anything to do with the two of you. But actually, it has everything to do with the other person. The key is that to succeed in any relationship, you have to first – both on the outside and the inside.
And if you don’t? Well, there’s lots you can do. Have a makeover, get your hair done, get fitter, get a hobby doing something you enjoy… There’s a million and one things you can do to learn to fall in love with yourself again. Because if you don’t love you, then why do you expect someone else to?
Yes, really. Because many of us, in our haste to get our point across, fail to listen to the other person. Give your partner a chance to get his or her point of view across. You’ll be amazed at what a potent effect this can have on a relationship.
Put your damn cell down:
Nothing screams ‘you don’t matter’ more than being made to feel second best to what’s going on in the virtual world. Who cares about the latest Facebook statuses?. Those tweets aren’t going anywhere, and really…! do you honestly have to keep scrolling through YouTube videos to stay amused?
Leave him (or her):
Just for a few days. The old saying, ‘absence makes the heart grow fonder’, really is a truism…
They’re great to receive, right? But it’s not a one-way street. Tell your other half (friend, relative etc.) when you notice good things. Learn to look and listen, so you actually notice when they’ve had their hair done, or are wearing something new. You get the picture…
Because in this crazy 21st century we live in, everything happens at a million miles an hour, and we just try to cram more and more in. This often happens to the detriment of our relationships. It’s so important to ensure you give your important partnerships as much of your as you do at, say – work! After all – you can always find another job. But do you want to have to find another relationship…?
Say thank you:
Not in a creepy way. But if your partner does something nice, acknowledge it. If you see they’ve taken the trash out – then mention it. If they’ve walked the dog, had the car cleaned, cleaned the bath… or whatever – even if it happens all the time, it’s nice to notice it. And makes the other person feel valued.
Leave a note:
Or send a card, or pick up a small gift. It’s often the little things that mean the most, because it simply says, “I’m thinking of you”.
And once you have, don’t bring it up again at a future date. This is one of the most infuriating things anyone can do in a relationship – and most destructive. If it’s in the past, then make sure you .
Keep out of any of their family dramas:
It’s their family, and therefore their responsibility. You can think you’re giving the best advice in the world, but when it comes to blood relatives, we’re all pretty possessive…
Stop being a control freak:
Because a relationship is a partnership – in other words, you’re both equal. If one person tries to take control, it sure upsets the equilibrium.
When the other person is speaking. Much as you might want to, don’t! It might seem like a small thing, but what it’s actually saying is, “I think my view is more important than yours”. And how rude is that? Just don’t do it…
Ask how their day went:
This is huge – but so easy to do. It shows you’re interested in what they do, and how their life is going. It gives them a chance to download on anything that might have caused stress in the day, and then allows both of you to move onto enjoying unhindered, quality time together.
Agree to disagree:
Because there will be times when you do clash. But as long as it’s not on something fundamental (e.g. you want kids, he doesn’t – you get the drift), then actually, it’s pretty healthy to have differing opinions. It’s all about respecting that the other party is a person in their own right, and has the right (the same as you do) to think differently.
Ditch the TV dinners:
Because it can be so easy to simply slouch in front of the box, shoveling food, engrossed in what’s going on in TV land. Turn that around by eating at the table, giving you both a chance to communicate properly. It’s an age-old act, and one that’s so important (and easy) to accomplish.