As it’s the week to be thankful for what/who you have in your life (although you should always feel thankful), I thought what would be better than to share my thankfulness for my husband.
I’m madly in love with my husband, he’s who I chose to take on life with. I’m thankful for everything he does for me: takes care of me, cooks, protects and genuinely loves me. However, there are times that I know we get on each other’s nerves. It’s actually funny, during the day I’m always saying such great things about him to my friends and coworkers. I share about how wonderful he is and how in love with him I am. Then I come home, he unfortunately gets most of my frustration taken out on him. Not the ideal way we want to spend our evening.
“Love is a verb, without action it’s merely a word.” I love this quote. I’m going to let you in on a little secret, being in a relationship isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. You have to work at it, just like any other job, because that’s what it is, a job. Every day you’ll face new obstacles or challenges that you need to work at to constantly keep your love alive.
My husband and I have been in a relationship for almost 10 years (coming up on our second wedding anniversary). I wouldn’t say we’re experts, but I would say no matter what life throws at us, we honestly love each other and work hard to keep our relationship strong.
What’s kept us together all these years?
I’ve asked a few friends, family members and my husband what are some of the best tips you can give to people to keep their relationship strong (thankful for all who helped, truly lucky to have you in my life). Here are a few of my favorite tips!!
- No one is perfect. Neither you nor your significant other. Chances are you’re both going to do something that upsets the other at least once in the relationship. It’s how you choose to move past it and grow from these challenges and annoyances that will make your relationship stronger.
- Always, I repeat, always laugh. Share things that make you both laugh. Relationships are meant to be fun and exciting. Find interests in each other’s passions and share even the most stupid ideas that will provide humor to both of your lives.
- Get comfortable, but not too comfortable. Make sure you are always trying new things and trying to be the best you for your significant other. Try to impress one another and keep the relationship fresh. For example: a new outfit you know the other will love. Planning a cute date for the two of you. Switching up the routine and doing something for them that they normally would do for you.
- Time. Making time for you and your partner is needed for any relationship. We all make time for what we feel is important in our lives and putting our relationship in the forefront is something that needs to happen more. I feel as though in any relationship, whether it is a marriage, long term or even a brand new relationship, ‘quality time’ is very important. However, it’s something that gets taken for granted of quite often. In order to continue to grow in your relationship as a couple and an individual, you must make sure you set aside time specifically for ‘quality time’. It isn’t about ‘having’ time, it’s about making time. On another note, just as much as we need ‘quality time’ we also need to have those moments of just ‘me time’. Reason being, you want to make sure you maintain your own sense of individuality within the relationship and encourage the same in your partner.
- Never go to bed mad at each other. Bickering is nonsense and not needed. As prideful as you are, take into account how the other is feeling. Saying sorry is a challenge, especially when you thought you were right or you know you’re wrong, but your pride is in the way. I promise you if you take a deep breath, a step back and don’t hold grudges, the fighting will stop and you’ll have gained some enlightenment.
- Encourage each other. You need to be your significant others support system. When they’re negative or feeling down, you don’t have to be negative with them. Do your best to build them back up. Help them see the very best in themselves that you see. I always tell my husband, I’m his #1 fan because I believe in him. I let him know how proud of him I am daily and I’m so thankful for his dedication and hard work.
- Patience is a virtue. You have to know, progress is progress, but it will take time. Allow for the other to have room to grow and make mistakes so that they can learn from them.
- Show your love. This one might be a bit tricky to understand, but everyone appreciates affection in different ways: Words of Affirmation, Acts of Services, Receiving Gifts, Quality Time, Physical Touch. What works for you, may not be how the other interprets love. Understanding and knowing what your partner needs will help you love in a way that will effectively impact the other person. If either of you are not feeling that love, then you need to share what you want from the other so you can be on the same page again. On the other hand, recognize when the other does something that makes you happy and let them know.
- Communication is so key. I’m sure you’ve heard this one before, but I can’t stress it enough. It’s possibly the full on glue that holds everything together. Share the big and small things that are going on in your life, it will make the other person feel involved and cared about. Also, you can’t assume what the other is thinking because well, chances are you just don’t read minds very well. **Sorry to burst your bubble, I wish I was psychic too….
- Respect each other. This is a big one. Respecting the others feelings, time, opinions etc. is very important. Even if it means nothing to you, it could mean everything to them. Obviously there are similarities you found in each other that makes you appreciate the other. Take a step back and realize that you have differences as well and respect the other person for those differences; they’re entitled to them.
Remember, relationships aren’t like what you see on TV, it’s not a fairytale. Both of you have to put in the time. When you’re in a relationship, you are merging your life with another. It’s not going to be easy, but nothing worth it ever is. Relationships thrive when all of the above tips are added into the mix. Remember to love, be committed, trust, respect, communicate, have patience and show companionship to one another. I’m so grateful that I have my husband in my life. We work hard to keep the love alive, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.