A good relationship doesn’t just happen. We’ve many of our readers complain “If I have to work at it, then it’s not the right relationship.” This is no more true than the idea that you don’t have to work at good physical health through exercise, eating well, and stress reduction.
We’ve discovered, in running this website and learning from all the materials we post, 7 choices you can make that will not only improve your relationship, but actually turn a failing relationship into a successful one.
1. Take Responsibility For Yourself
This is the most important choice you can make to improve your relationship. This means that you learn how to take responsibility for your own feelings and needs. This means that instead of depending on your partner for happiness and security, you find these things for yourself through your own thoughts and actions.
This means learning to treat yourself with kindness, caring, compassion, and acceptance instead of harsh judgment. Self-criticism will always make you feel unhappy and insecure, no matter how wonderfully your partner is treating you.
For example, instead of getting angry at your partner if you feel abandonned when he or she is late, preoccupied, or not turned on sexually, you explore your own feelings of abandonment and discover how you might be abandoning yourself.
When you learn how to take full, 100% responsibility for yourself, then you stop blaming your partner for your hardships. Since blaming partners for unhappy relationships is the number one cause of relationship problems, learning how to take loving care of yourself is vital to a good relationship.
2. Kindness, Compassion, and Acceptance in Your Relationship
Treat others the way you want to be treated. This is the essence of a truly spiritual life. We all yearn to be treated lovingly – with kindness, compassion, understanding, and acceptance. We need to treat ourselves this way, and we need to treat our partner and others this way.
You’ll often find that treating another with kindness brings kindness in return. If your partner is consistently angry, judgmental, uncaring and unkind, then you need to put aside anger, blame, judgment, withdrawal, resistance, or compliance and respond with kindness. This doesn’t mean sacrificing yourself.
Remember that taking responsibility for yourself is the most important thing you do. So, if you’re consistently kind to yourself and your partner, and your partner is consistently angry, blaming, withdrawn and unavailable, then you either have to accept a distant relationship, or you need to leave the relationship.
You can’t make your partner change – you can only change yourself.
3. Learning Instead of Controlling
When conflicts happen, you always have two choices about how to handle the situation: you can open up to learning about yourself and your partner and discover the deeper issues of the conflict, or you can try to win, through certain controlling behavior.
We’ve all learned overt and subtle ways of manipulating others into behaving the way we want: anger, blame, judgment, niceness, compliance, care-taking, resistance, withdrawal of love, explaining, teaching, defending, lying, denying, and so on.
These methods of control create even more conflict. Remembering to learn instead of control is a vital part of improving your relationship.
For example, most people have two major fears that become activated in relationships: the fear of abandonment – of losing the other – and the fear of engulfment – of losing the self. When these fears get activated, most people immediately protect themselves with controlling behavior.
But if you choose to learn about your fears instead of control your partner, your fear would eventually heal. This is how we grow emotionally and spiritually – by learning instead of controlling.
4. Create Date Times to Sustain the Spark in Your Relationship
When people first fall in love, they make time for each other. Then, especially after getting married, they get busy. Relationships need time to thrive. It’s vitally important to set aside specific times to be together – to talk, play, make love. Intimacy can’t be maintained without time together.
5. Gratitude Instead of Complaining
Positive energy flows between two people when there is an “attitude of gratitude.” Constant complaints create a heavy, negative energy, which is not fun to be around. Practice being grateful for what you have rather than focusing on what you don’t have.
Complaints create stress, while gratitude creates inner peace. So gratitude improves not only emotional and relationship health, but physical health as well.
6. Fun and Play
Work without play makes for a dull relationship. Relationships flourish when people laugh together, play together, and when humor is a part of everyday life. Stop taking everything so seriously and learn to see the funny side of life. Intimacy flourishes when there is lightness of being, not when everything is heavy.
A wonderful way of creating intimacy is to do service projects together. Giving to others fills the heart and creates deep satisfaction in the soul. Doing service brings you out of yourself and your own problems and supports a broader, more spiritual view of life.
If you and your partner agree to these 7 choices, you will be amazed at the improvement in your relationship!
From Sarah:Here’s an amazing way to bring your man closer that we just thought of and put into a book for you – to be able to give him a professional level massage (even if you just choose to go for 5 or 10 minutes and get to just one part of his body) – WITHOUT having a hidden agenda or doing a half-job. The difference when you touch a man and KNOW WHAT YOU’RE DOING is… indescribable. He’ll just be SO surprised and give himself completely over to you. Check out this ebook – you’ll learn so much so fast, and have a powerful tool for romance and deepening your relationship that practically no other women have – “Get Him Committed! – Massage Secrets To Make Him Putty In Your Hands” …