Everybody wants a strong relationship. It’s an excellent goal, but not as easy as you would think to accomplish. It takes two to make it work. Both people need to learn to compromise, empathize and sympathize with one another. Here are a few things that might help ease the way to a better relationship.
Always listen to the things your partner has to say. Even if you completely disagree, they need to know that you are listening and are at least considering the things they consider important. Sometimes you need to agree to disagree in order to keep harmony in the household. This can sometimes be difficult because we often believe that if we have found our true “soulmate” they will agree with everything we say or do, but that is not the case. In fact, life would be truly boring if we all agreed on everything. The truth is that everybody comes from a different set of circumstances, so we’re not always going to agree, but if we discuss things, we can usually come to a compromise.
Support them with your actions as well as words. If they have a dream, help them to pursue it. Give them the tools to accomplish their goals. When the going gets tough, even the tough need a little tenderness. Give them time for themselves. In the end, you will be more appreciated for this more than you will ever know.
Be polite to your spouse. It seems like common sense, but there are too many people that while they may be polite in public, forget their manners the moment they walk in the door of their own home. Don’t forget to say please and thank you. Treat them with respect. Open doors for them (that goes for both genders). All too often we take for granted that they owe us, and hurt them just by not appreciating them.
Offer to do something together that your you know your partner will enjoy. Don’t expect that they will reciprocate, but instead be pleasantly surprised if they do. Treat every moment together as if there is no where else in the world you would rather be.
Notice and thank them for the little things they do, even if it’s something that you expect of them. Thank them for going out to work and bringing in an income. Thank them for taking good care of the children. Thank them for preparing a good dinner. Even thank them for doing the dishes or the laundry. These things go unappreciated way too often.
Do a chore or job that your spouse that your spouse would normally do, like taking out the trash, or doing the dishes. Do it voluntarily and cheerfully without complaint or mention. This is even better if it’s a chore you know they hate doing, but do because they know it’s theirs to do.
Respect the fact that your spouse needs freedom. Remember the old adage “If you love someone, set them free.” This is especially true in marital relationships. It’s hard to do sometimes, because most people have trust issues and want to be in control, but it’s worth it if you do. Restricting the freedom of your spouse only builds resentment, and hurts you both in the end.
Respect that they sometimes need privacy. This can be hard because of the trust issues as well, but everyone needs a little time to reflect on their own thoughts and feelings. This is especially true of a stay at home mother or father. While the working spouse often at least has a little time to themselves in the car on their way to work, the stay at home spouse is lucky to have 2 seconds to themselves when there are children in the house. This could also work in your favor around holidays and birthdays as it’s pretty tough to plan a surprise for someone who’s always looking over your shoulder.
Last but not least, little things mean the most. Compassion and love go such a long way. The Kenny Rogers song, “Buy me a Rose, ” says a lot. The things we need the most are those little things. The big things are nice to have, but they don’t show that you care as much as the tiny gestures that we tend to take for granted and forget to do.