It sometimes seems a little odd that we race into January with big intentions to change our diet, exercise more, learn something new, change our job, home or just reorganize a little.
We look at every element of our lives and decide to give it an overhaul and start fresh – it is after all the ultimate in annual clean slates. So when we are writing or just verbally procrastinating on our New Year’s Resolutions why is it that we do not factor in our relationships? If we are single then there is plenty to work at (maybe – maybe you are absolutely perfect and simply waiting for someone who can be your equal). If we are happily married, engaged or dating someone special then it is easy to get complacent. I think with divorce levels where they are it is safe to assume that long lasting happy relationships take work and if you want something extra special then creating a little magic once in a while will certainly stand you in good stead.
So here are our tips to keep your relationship rocking for years to come. Small changes are far more practical than most individual’s plans to turn their pot roasts into salads and their 1 mile walk a day into half marathon training sessions… Here are five top tips that would see you pledging manageable and beneficial New Year’s Resolutions:
If you are single then leave those past relationships behind. Take what you learnt from them and absorb that into your character moving forwards. But, don’t beat yourself up, keep searching for unanswerable questions or just going over those ‘what if’ thoughts and moments. The past is very much the past and chances are something even better can be found in your future. If you have a partner then the new year is your opportunity to put past arguments and gripes to bed. Just let them go, forgive, forget and recognise that you are both different people and sometimes you will not agree on something or act the same way in every situation. Your relationship will never get tighter and move forwards if you revisit the same squabbles and irritants time and time again.
It is not something we always appreciate but emotional intelligence can be a major factor in relationship security. It is the ability to identify, assess and manage our own emotions as well as those of the people around us. If you are single then exploring yourself and your own emotional intelligence around friends and family will stand you in good stead. Simply acknowledging its existence and tuning into it is a big step for many people. In relationships, people who are emotionally intelligent tend to have better quality relationships than people with poorer social skills. It is not a natural strength for many people but it can certainly be improved upon.
Single people everywhere spend the Christmas period watching couples spend some quality time together. They are asked the dreaded question – ‘seeing anyone’ and have to decide on a blunt ‘no’ or a more informative answer. It can be a tough time – it can also be a great time to mix with friends, acquaintances and of course other single people. You can either emerge from this period full of hope, optimism and determination to live your life as you and attract the right kind of partner. Or you can be negative, insecure and self-critical and miss those golden opportunities. Of course pessimists get dates but if was to ask you: ‘are you more likely to date a positive person or a negative one?’ Don’t answer that…I know your answer. For those in relationships it is so easy to sink into a negative cycle if things are not going smoothly. Negative thoughts tend to attract and facilitate further negativity. This cycle will simply make your feelings worse and plunge the relationship into further peril. Try and focus on the positives, remember why you fell in love, and change whatever it is that put strain on your bond and made you drift apart. Turn your criticisms into complements. Don’t let life ruin what you have unless you really are incompatible.
Couples who support each other, share their goals and talk everything through tend to have a longer shelf life. This is just common sense because you contribute more to each other’s lives and share the hardships, the challenges, the successes and the victories together. These are the moments that bring couples together and really cement their future as one united front. If you are not sure what 2016 holds for you then talking about what you have achieved together will make the year ahead feel more promising and accessible. It is much easier for each of your to achieve those lofty goals when you are both on the same wavelength.
This is as true for couples as it is for single people. Mr or Mrs Right could be a sculpture of imperfections, but you just don’t care because you love their spirit, their energy and the way they feel about you. Do not risk missing an introduction with potential partners because they do not tick all the boxes immediately. It is not really compromising it is simply refusing to judge a book by its cover and embracing different personalities in the hope of finding someone that will complete you! All couples disagree because that maintains the equilibrium so that you can have some brilliant times together as well. Take the lows with the highs and be happy being wrong sometimes and apologising when you need to. A little compromise goes a long way to maintaining a healthy relationship. And if none of that works then you can always look into ways to spice up your bedroom relations! That usually puts a spark back into a relationship when tensions are running high.
Happy New Year everyone – we hope your relationships will be happy for years and years to come. And for those wonderful single people – fingers crossed that 2020 contains Mr or Mrs Right! Good luck.
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