Falling in love can be easy, but staying in love takes work. If your goal is to create a long-lasting romantic relationship, Merethe Najjar at YourTango and various experts have four tips that can really help.
Can love really last forever?
When you fall in love, it seems like anything is possible. And as you mature and change together in your relationship with your partner, it becomes a challenge to find new ways to keep that love burning as brightly as it once used to.
But no matter how you both grow, there are several things that you can do in your relationship to make your love one that will last and be able to withstand anything!
You love your partner and want to be happy with them in your life. And while it sounds like something that will come naturally, there are always times that your love, devotion, and dedication will be tried.
So if you want to get the most out of your relationship, then you're going to need to actively work toward that happiness.
For some couples, this is easy and appears effortless. But the majority of relationships will require hard work and dedication in an effort to keep things fresh and to make sure that the love between the both of you never fades or grows weary. Or that if it does, you can bring it back on track, too.
But how can you accomplish this? And are there tips and tricks that you can use to make it easy and fun?
We asked some of our YourTango experts to share their best advice for creating happy, long-lasting relationships.
Here are four ways to build a love that lasts with your partner:
1. Don't sweat the small stuff.
"Lasting love requires a mindful focus on our partner's positive qualities," explains relationship counselor Jan Caniff. "Make a list of all the things you love about your partner when you are feeling close and memorize them. When life gets difficult or your partner isn't their best self (even though they are basically a good person), remember your list and try not to be swept away with negative critical thoughts that beget more critical thoughts. Purposefully cherish, accept, and hold in kindness, the human fragility of your loved one."
Your partner is a human. They're gonna mess up and make mistakes from time to time. It's important that you keep in mind all the wonderful parts of their personality so that even when you're upset with them, the negatives won't outweigh the positives.
Jan Canniff LMHC NCC is a certified Gottman method relationship counselor and psychotherapist with thirty years' experience helping individuals and couples successfully reach their goals. Jan recently closed her active private practice and moved to an island where she is pondering life, writing articles and offering presentations on couples' dynamics.
2. Focus on the now to create a better future.
"Don't try to make your love last a lifetime. Instead, build your forever one day at a time," suggests author Kawtar El Alaoui.
"It sounds counter-intuitive, but for many, the pressure of focusing on forever takes away from the joy and freedom of being in a happy and loving partnership. Instead of worrying about a lifetime, use your energy to create the most nurturing and connected relationship for both partners, and you'll never want to leave."
"Focus your mutual commitment on being present to your partner in the moment, and being an empowering force in each other's lives. Create a relationship you would say yes to each day, and forever will be a natural by-product."
If you're constantly worried about what things are going to be like in the future, then you're going to miss the most exciting parts of the present that will make your future even better! Rome wasn't built in a day, and neither is your relationship. Make sure that you're staying present with your partner and working together day by day to create something beautiful.
Kawtar El Alaoui is a personal, leadership, and social change agent whose articles were published in Women's News Korea. She supports both men and women in living authentically and creating happy and healthy relationships. Find out more about her work on Empower From Within.
3. Show your appreciation for your partner regularly.
"Love is the blanket that keeps you warm, the soft padding that gives comfort from the hard surfaces of life, the cover that shields you from the glaring sun and the bitter cold. Like a blanket, if you pick at a loose thread, work your finger into a small hole, stretch it beyond its limits, it can fall apart," explains spiritual director Margaret Herrick.
"Develop a practice of appreciation: the caress of its soft texture, the stimulation of its vibrant color, the comfort of the protection you feel. Be grateful for the gifts. Don't pick on the flaws. Then, the blanket of love will last a lifetime."
Kindness and appreciation for your partner will go a long way in ensuring that they feel recognized and loved. And the more you appreciate them, the more loved and wanted they will feel, and they will be grateful to do things for and with you since they know how much it means to you. Kindness is a circle that keeps coming around!
Margaret Herrick is a spiritual director, philanthropist supporting social impact investing, and a Focusing trainer, whose writing has appeared on sites like The Focusing Folio and Diamond Dust. You can follow Margaret on LinkedIn.
4. Make sure your partner feels understood.
"A lot of couples get that they need to learn how to share their feelings and listen to each other if their relationship and their love is going to last. But how to do that in a way that doesn't trigger each other into flight, fight, or freeze is the hard part," shares relationship coach Veronica Monet.
"I teach couples to always appreciate and validate their partner's feelings and requests BEFORE saying no to what they are asking for or proposing an alternative. It's amazing how that one little hack will open hearts and create emotional safety for both of you, and that open-hearted connection and emotional safety is what makes love last!"
Remember that you need to try and see things from your partner's perspective. This will help when it feels like all you want to do is scream at them. Take a minute, slow your breathing, and try to really see things from their point of view. It will diffuse the situation and make both of you feel heard and understood!
Veronica Monet, ACS is an internationally acclaimed sexual empowerment change agent and relationship coach. CNN, FOX, Politically Incorrect, Yale, Stanford and UC Berkeley are just a few of the numerous news and educational institutions that have hosted Veronica for her forward-thinking insights and expertise. Veronica invites you to her Shame Free Zone to discover her game-changing Exquisite Partnership Formula ™ designed to turn conflict into connection and sex that gets better with each passing year.
For more advice from incredible people in helping professions, look to our Experts. They are here to help!
Merethe Najjar is a professional writer, editor, and fiction author living in Atlanta, GA, with her husband and their rescue cat. She graduated with a degree in creative writing and recently had her first sci-fi romance novel, Mercury in Retrograde, published. You can also find her on her website, MeretheWalther.com, or follow her on Twitter and Facebook.
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