What do you think matters most in committed relationships? Perhaps a deep sense of love and security that you found your soul mate or the one you believe is “the one”… or… perhaps it’s simply the fun times and companionship that brings light and spontaneity into your life.
The two main types of longterm committed relationships, could be boiled-down into relationships that restrict, suppress and depress, and the opposite type of relationship that encourages, excites your passions and enthusiasm. But, sadly, the actual longevity of the relationship maybe more about compromise, personality and feelings of obligation.
From pure love comes the willingness to build more patience, understanding and connection.
To listen without judgement, to listen without pushing an agenda and renew a genuine interest in their happiness and well-being, beyond just how it relates to yourself.
Have love, show love and feel love for the special someone in your life… Speak this love verbally, physically and emotionally. Words matter. Actions matter. Your feelings matter too, don’t ignore them, find a way to communicate your feelings, even if you need to write them down and convey them that way.
Compassion and Empathy
The willingness to see things from your partner’s point of view and understand their perspective maybe different, but just as valid. You may have to relinquish a bit of your pride, ego and righteousness.
Gaining an understanding of your partner’s needs, wants and feelings… is what can keep you, not just together, but truly close throughout the relationship. This is what separates the truly amazing relationships from the mediocre relationships that often behave more like a business partnership.
Everyone will have emotional times that will drag them up and down through anxiety, worry, anger, jealousy and feelings of inadequacy; but, having someone to encourage, listen and support you… that can bring the “life” back into your life.
Communication is not just about talking and it’s not even just about body language either. Complete communication can be thought of as a way of sharing, whether it be sharing thoughts, sharing physical contact, sharing emotions or sharing an experience. Sharing a multitude of experiences with your partner is so key to a successful relationship and your efforts into finding experiences to share with your special someone will always have a high ROI (return on your investment), even if you don’t see the fruits of your labor immediately.
This is a tricky one and commonly overlooked. You may have already clearly identified your relationship, but perhaps you haven’t talked about it with your partner. You may even feel like you don’t want to do any sort of identification of your relationship. But, if you don’t identify at least some of the most important parts of your relationship with the other person, then you could be setting yourself up for a wake-up call when you come to some realization that the relationship you think you have, isn’t what they thought you have and therefore, you don’t really have the relationship that you were thinking you thought you had.
I should point out that when in the process of identifying your relationship with someone, do NOT superimpose things that you have identified, let the other person build their own set of things they have identified about the relationship and then, and only then discuss what each of you have discovered. Keep it as much of an exploratory ongoing conversation as possible. Don’t decide what is what for the other person, but also don’t be apologetic for what you decide is part of your relationship.. there is no wrong and right here folks.
Discipline and Commitment
Committed to something takes discipline and, well, is essentially at its core a form of discipline. The antithesis of discipline (and commitment) is temptation; letting your eyes and mind wonder, temporarily leaving promises and focus on what you’ve already decided is important to you. Feeding into the temptations, prioritizing your vices and even letting the distractions over-take your time… all lead to a gradual deterioration of your relationship.
No matter who you are, you will never do what you want or what you think you should do a hundred percent of the time… sorry, that’s just not humanly possible. So, what this means is that you NEED to remind yourself to be present in the relationship and really act the part versus conjuring up some excuse that you can twist into a reason why you can’t put out the effort.
Strive and work at being more consistent every day in your thoughts, words, actions and emotions.
Value your time with your partner in your relationship; it’s not forever and by the time you realize it’s not forever you might just find yourself wishing you had valued and made your relationship a higher priority throughout its duration.
I have yet to read or hear from anyone on their deathbed, that they wish they had worked more and spent less time with their family or partners. What they seem to remember more than anything, is the special moments they shared with their loved ones. If you’re not laughing nearly everyday, then take some time to reevaluate and make sure you are prioritizing what is truly important to you.
So go “all in”, pour yourself fully into what you have committed to and when the grass on the other side looks greener… focus and tend to your yard, the more you water, weed, fertilize and aerate your lawn… the more beautiful it will grow and the more appreciative you will become.