Relationship Survival Tips
In these unprecedented times we are all going to be challenged in ways we’d never envisaged. And one of the biggest challenges will be to keep our intimate relationships from imploding under the stress and strain of the new circumstances we find ourselves forced into.
This time can be a fantastic opportunity to grow your relationship. You can utilise this period of uncertainty to re-connect and increase your affection and love for each other. Knowing that supporting each other in times of stress is vital to the health of both of you could be the catalyst to strengthen the foundation of your relationship. From there you create the opportunity to take your relationship to a whole new level.
However, the opposite can just as easily happen. Being forced to spend a lengthy period of time together in isolation can exacerbate any issues between you that have been building. Things that you brushed off in the past suddenly become amplified and turn into raging arguments. The stress builds and you get triggered by little things that didn’t bother you in the past. The uncertainty over your health, finances, and relationships takes its toll, and you take it out on your partner. If you don’t have the tools to turn this around it can get out of control very quickly.
So, what can you do to minimise the impact these uncertain times can have on your relationship, and perhaps even use the time to create the relationship you’ve always dreamed of? Below are some relationship survival tips that will help you through this difficult time:
- Focus on Gratitude. When something is taken away from us it can awaken us to how important it really is, and how we have taken it for granted. There are many things over this period that we are going to really miss and gain a greater appreciation for. However, this may not be the case with your relationship. In fact, you are likely to have a lot more of it – quite possibly more than you really want! So in this situation it is vital that you consciously direct your focus away from what’s not good and concentrate on what is good.
Our brains are wired to focus on threats to our survival, so we naturally place our attention on what’s wrong rather than what’s right. We need to make a conscious decision to turn this around and see the good things about the world, and our partner. Every day write down 3 things that you appreciate about him or her, and then tell them. This is incredibly powerful. There is a universal law that what we focus on we attract more of into our lives. It’s your choice where you place your focus. What do you want to attract into your life?
- Don’t Take Your Stress Out On Your Partner. Sometimes when stressful situations overwhelm us we release our frustrations on the closest person to us. That person is often our partner. There may be a trigger – perhaps something he or she says or does – that sends us over the edge. Our reaction is way disproportionate to the action.
It’s vitally important to understand that supporting each other is crucial to navigating through these difficult times. Little niggles get exacerbated and we end up feeling like we are on opposite teams. Right now is a time where teamwork is vital. So, instead of reacting, ask yourself; ‘is my reaction justified, or am I about to take out my frustrations on my partner unfairly?’
If you’re completely honest with yourself you will realise that most likely your intended reaction is not warranted. But even if you feel it is warranted, exploding at your partner is not going to help. So instead, ask your partner if you could sit down and discuss calmly what is bothering you. Make sure you do not blame them for your troubles. Explain that you would just like them to listen, and then open up about your fears and concerns. This will give you a much better chance of you working together to get through this crisis.
- Use This Time To Re-Discover Your Partner. Often as time goes on in a relationship we get so pre-occupied with other things (work, kids, extra-curricular activities etc) that we lose our connection to our partner. Sometimes it can seem like more of a business partnership than a romantic one. Those long, intense conversations where we delved deep into our partner’s psyche are a distant memory.
With this enforced isolation, now is a perfect time to really get to know your partner again. Some great ways to do this include:
- Revisit your past. Perhaps get the old photo albums out and reminisce about the great times you had. Remember how you felt and express this to your partner.
- Try recreating some of the things you used to do early on in your relationship. Perhaps even pretend that you have just met, and have those deep, intense conversations where you get to know each other. What questions will you ask?
- Each write a list of questions for the other about things you don’t know about them, and then ask each other. For example, ‘What is the one thing you really wish you’d said to someone but didn’t/haven’t?’ Be creative!
- Play some games you’ve never payed, or haven’t played for a long time. Make it fun!
- Find a Shared Purpose. Just as having a purpose in life is vital for your own well-being and happiness, so is having a shared purpose as a couple for the health and vitality of your relationship. This is especially important in testing times such as these. So now is the perfect time to get together to either find a new shared purpose, re-discover an old one, or build on one that you are already working on. These could include:
- Creating and building a new business idea
- Discovering your family histories together
- Reading or watching personal development books or videos and doing the exercises together
- Put into place a diet and exercise program with the goal to get fit and healthy
- Learning a new skill together
- Make a pact to revitalise your relationship. Perhaps buy or download a book each and discuss the ideas in it together. (If you would like any book recommendations please send me an email).
This is an unprecedented time in our lives which provides a unique opportunity for your relationship. You can either use the time to grow your relationship, or allow the stresses of the situation overwhelm you. Which one are you going to choose?
Matt Glover is a relationship expert with Happy and Healthy Relationships. Matt is available for online consultations and is offering significant discounts during this difficult period. For more information, visit https://www.happyandhealthyrelationships.com/ or contact Matt on 0416 211 424, or email firstname.lastname@example.org