There are some things we can do in all our relationships to build and maintain strong bonds. This is true because underneath all our differences, likes, dislikes, and biases, we are all human beings who desire social connections. The tips below could be used in all your relationships to form bonds that will stand the test of time. Never more so though than in an intimate relationship, where you want to nurture and protect emotional and/or physical intimacy.
This might mean different things in different relationships, but the overarching sentiment is the same. When they do something kind for you or take the tie to support you when you need it, be appreciative – acknowledge their care and concern, openly expressing your gratitude, not just for the big important stuff.
Spend Time Together
It can be hard to find time to get together when we are all so busy, but it’s important for all relationships. If necessary, set up a standing appointment so that it happens automatically. With time you will get used to scheduling other things around it. Psychological, emotional and physical intimacy all require quality time on a regular basis. Otherwise your relationship can only be superficial. It’s no coincidence most relationships thrive and bloom in the early days when couples dedicate time and energy to beingtogether; often actively protecting their time spent together from other distractions. Then over time as familiarity creeps in, priority shifts, time is reduced and …….
Sometimes you may be tempted to bend the truth to avoid conflict, but your relationships will be much healthier overall if honesty is held in high regard. It’s possible to be honest without being brutal. Choose your words carefully and be as diplomatic as possible, while still sharing your feelings openly and honestly. Remember listening is an important aspect of communication. When you share with them your honest thoughts or feelings, make sure you hear their response to deepen your understanding.
Forgive them for their eccentricities and annoying habits, (and also forgive yourself for any mistakes you make). We all have faults and shortcomings that we bring with us into any relationship. Sometimes to keep the relationship strong, we need to just come to the conclusion that their presence in our lives is more important than the little habits that drive us crazy. We’ve all heard the phrase “no one’s perfect”, after all we’re all human. It’s important to remember that each of us is usually doing the best we can with what we have available to us (education, understanding, maturity and experience), at any one time. We all want the same things…..to be loved, liked and wanted. We just go about it in different ways. Enter communication!
Intermingled between all the good times, there will surely be times when the other person could use a helping hand. Whether it’s helping them with one of their responsibilities if they’re strapped for time, taking them dinner when they’re not well, being understanding when they need to run late, or being a sounding board for a difficult decision, any relationship worth having requires some TLC. And the other person deserves it, just as you do when you need it from them.
Do Unto Others
It’s a good idea to always live by the Golden Rule, but it’s especially true in relationships that are important to us. If you wonder if something you might do is likely to upset them, chances are it’s better to talk to them about it first. Wouldn’t you want them to do the same for you? It’s better to err on the side of caution. Just as you desire kindness, love, attention, support, tolerance and understanding, so too do they. Gift them that which we all desire and your chances of a nurturing relationship will sky rocket.
Essentially humans crave the same things in similar relationships. We attempt to achieve them however, in different ways based on past life experiences. Rather than judging or rebuking the other’s efforts, try acknowledge their motivations, communicate and grow closer.
Show You Care
This is important to a lesser or greater degree in all relationships. Never more so however, than in an intimate relationship. Gary Chapman in 5 Languages of Love, shows us how each of us has a preferred ‘love language’ where we are able to more easily register a show of care, or love. A bit like