How to overcome the seven hardest phases of a relationship
In other words, falling in love is the easy part; maintaining that romance is the challenge.
Relationships are hard work despite what the Richard Curtis movies tell you. Furthermore, a path to a long-lasting, profound, and significant friendship with someone is not always a funny or endearing one. Additionally, Bill Nighy is rarely a part of it.
There are several basic challenges that most individuals in relationships will endure at some point or another, such as communication problems or finding it difficult to carve out time together.
With the help of dating specialists, the Independent has identified these obstacles and provided essential guidance for navigating them.
1. Honoring each other
The ups and downs of life together inevitably bring about shifts in how much each partner values the other. This can be for the better or the worst.
According to licenced psychologist Daria Kuss, conflicts in relationships often start with one spouse not respecting the other’s values, limits, hobbies, or family.
Recognize that “people may be diverse, like different things, and have different ideas and relationship requirements,” she advises.
Any attempt to influence them will be futile in the long run, and it’s unrealistic to think that you can. Be grateful for who they are and the part they play in your life even if you don’t always agree on everything.
2) Establishing a working definition of the partnership
With the rise of dating apps, singles now have more options than ever before when it comes to finding a romantic partner. Simply swipe right to meet someone new.
However, this can be problematic when attempting to begin a committed relationship with someone, since it may take some time for both parties to accept that the dating phase is over and a partnership has begun.
Dating expert Hayley Quinn thinks that determining when “seeing someone” has become a committed relationship is one of today’s most pressing relationship issues.
“Right now, we need to check in and make sure everyone knows where they stand.”
Quinn suggests paying attention to the other person’s signals about their level of commitment to you in order to reach a point where you can define the relationship.
Take them at their word if they indicate they’re not ready for a committed relationship. Second, try to find a partner that has similar views on commitment as you have. Don’t let finding someone you like trick you into settling for less than you originally desired.
3: Failing to Talk to One Another
One of the most common reasons for fights between partners is poor communication. This is because it is so aggravating to feel like your spouse is not paying attention to what you have to say.
Kuss suggests setting aside time for dialogue, practising active listening, and restating the other person’s words in your own words to avoid misunderstandings.
She warns against “avoid allegation and blame,” saying it will only make issues worse. Communicate your openness and consideration for the other person’s feelings and needs.
Making time for one another
Because of our hectic schedules, it’s easy to neglect a relationship, especially a long-term one.
According to Quinn, “by now we should all know that we can’t get all our needs met through one person,” and that healthy partnerships allow each partner to have their own life and set of friends.
4, “when one-on-one time is pushed down to near zero, relationships can tend to lack physical and emotional intimacy.”
That is to say, you and your significant other should avoid spending all of your time together in front of the television or doing the dishes.
As Quinn puts it, “Try going low-fi and turning off technology; go for a walk (this frequently makes it easier to have emotionally deep talks), assemble a puzzle, or even have breakfast together with your phones safely switched off or put on aeroplane mode.”
5. Closeness to one another physically
Lack of physical closeness between partners is frequent and can lead to tension in other areas of a relationship.
“The ‘love hormone,’ oxytocin, is released during sexual activity and other physical contact between partners,” explains Kuss.
So, “this should be promoted in order to keep the level of closeness between spouses.”
Learning to compromise with your partner is the oldest piece of advise for maintaining a healthy relationship. According to Quinn, though, it is critically significant and frequently serves as a bone of contention in struggling partnerships.
Although she agrees that learning to compromise is crucial to a healthy relationship, she stresses the importance of knowing when to draw the line.
The ability to overlook minor disagreements, foster cohesion, and practise good old-fashioned give and take in a relationship is directly correlated to the partners’ level of realism about their connection and their comfort with the idea that they may not always be able to agree on everything.
“However, it is possible for compromise to go too far, causing you to set aside essential requirements and boundaries in order to maintain the status quo.”
In order to restore harmony, Quinn advises couples to consider when it is best to go with the flow and when it is necessary to state their wants explicitly in order to avoid misunderstandings.
Conflict is a natural component of any close relationship. According to Quinn, the most crucial part of an argument is how it is presented.
She adds that the key to success is “successfully moving on once you’ve disagreed.”
As an example, after a fight, instead of sleeping on the couch in a sulk, you can decide to embrace your partner.
“It could also mean promising to keep conflicts focused on the issue at hand, rather than bringing up other subjects on which you haven’t seen eye to eye over the years,” the author writes.
Perhaps you’re just attempting to tolerate the annoying habits your partner has.
Instead of always attempting to outdo and outsmart your partner, keep stressing the value of teamwork by saying things like, “As the cliché goes, ‘you can either be right, or be happy.'”