Do you struggle to keep a relationship?
Do you start a new relationship determined that it will be different from your last, only to find yourself three weeks later back where you started?
Did you keep upsetting that person you love again and again?
If you have experienced one or all the situations above, you are not alone. A lot of couples, young or old, often struggle to stay and enjoy an enduring relationship. These are written for couples with the hope of producing more beautiful and lasting love stories.
- Thou shalt Spend Quality Time Together
The most crucial thing you can invest in is the time you spend with your partner. What a lot of people misunderstand about spending time together is that male and female may have very different definition of quality time.
For a female, most often this means talking.
For a male, however, they define quality time as the time a couple spend doing activities together. In some cases, some man even enjoy having his partner just by his side.
Do communicate with your partner and ask what they define as quality time, as this may differ between individuals.
2. Thou shalt Learn to Communicate Better
Do you communicate enough? What do you define as communication?
Again, this may be very different for each individuals. In my experience with my fiancée, we tend to have a lot of topics with mutual interest, so we didn’t find it difficult to have something to talk about.
I am grateful however, that my fiancée has a Sanguine / Influence type personality, and easily comes up with topics to talk about.Communication, in my opinion, however, is more than just having things to talk about. It’s also about being able to share things that you don’t normally share to others. It’s being willing to be vulnerable.
Talk about your fears, your mistakes, your failures. Remember that he or she is someone you choose to love, and so being able to admit your weaknesses allows them to understand why you behaved the way you do. [tweet_quote]Better understanding usually yields better communication, which yields better relationship.[/tweet_quote]
3. Thou shalt Manage Money Wisely
Money tends to be a sensitive issue even among the most loving couple. It’s a good idea to talk about this early to make it easier to resolve any issues that may arise later.
Who pays for meals? Who pays for movie tickets on a date night? Who pays for picnics?
In most cultures I know, the male should pay for the female most (if not all) the time. However, unless the male have enough financial literacy, this may make it difficult for the male to continue doing so in the relationship. Not to mention the potential problem that may arise when the male starts counting.
I suggest for a healthier form of balanced approach. Pay for your own meals most of the time, and perhaps you may want to set an agreement on some special occasions where one will pay for the other. There’s of course nothing stopping you from coming up with a surprise moment to treat your loved one.
4. Thou shalt Seek Coaching / Counselling
I cannot emphasise this enough that everyone needed some form of coaching or counselling to keep their relationship healthy. In some cases, you may talk to parents. I used to seek guidance from married couples.
Just like you need education and apprenticeship to go further in your career, I believe every couples need a coach to help them go further in their relationship. We all can benefit from the advice of those who have gone through our experience. Someone who is able to provide much-needed guidance.
5. Thou shalt Affirm Each Other At All Times
Do you remember the last time you quarrelled with your partner over something petty? Or the time he or she got upset over your seemingly “harmless” jokes?
I have seen many loving couples got into a bad argument by not being careful with what they say about their partner.
Choose your words carefully and instead of talking them down or belittling them, provide encouragement. Say words that helps them grow in confidence.
You need to to look at them beyond who or what they are currently. In fact, it is very possible that you are the only person whose opinions and words they value. Choose to make it a habit to encourage and uplift.
6. Thou shalt Love And Respect
Not a lot of people understand the inherent need that different sexes for these two simple but powerful words.To put it simply, women needs to feel loved while men needs to feel respected. I learned about this very important lesson from Dr. Emerson Eggerichs in his bestseller book Love & Respect.
Most, if not all the time, we got it completely reversed. Female tried to give male love but not realising what the man needs is respect, and vice versa.
How do you give man the respect they needed? The greater breakdown requires a sophisticated discussion which does not fit into the scope of this post. Essentially, allow them to make decisions, speak well of them, make them feel important and make them feel that you trust and depend on them.
How do you give woman the love they needed? Listen to them. Make them feel secure. Give them your complete attention when they are talking.
7. Thou shalt Learn About Each Other Incessantly
In the movie Fireproof, the main character Caleb Holt learned that being in a relationship is like going to school.
If the amount he studied her before marriage was equal to a high school degree, he should continue to learn about her until he gains a college degree, a master’s degree and ultimately a doctorate. It is a lifelong journey that draws his heart ever closer to hers.
One of the aspects I find very useful to learn about my partner is discovering her love language. By discovering about her love language, I learned what pleases her and what makes her feel loved (remember showing love in point #6)
You can access the free assessment tool to find out more about you and your partner’s love language.
8. Thou shalt Always Be Grateful
The good news is, it is also a major reason for healthy, enduring relationships.Don’t take your partner for granted. Commit to remind yourself everyday of at least three reasons why you are thankful about your partner.Researchers have found scientific evidence that gratitude is one of the key to having a healthy relationship.
9. Thou shalt Be Selfless
A healthy relationship is composed of two mature thinking adults. As an adult, you think less about what you can get out of the relationship or out of your partner. Instead, you think more about what and how much you can give into the relationship and to your partner. Strive for selflessness and you will see significant growth in your relationship.
10. Thou shalt Be Trustworthy
Trust doesn’t come easily. Trust is not something you ask for, nor it is given. It is something you earn. Do you behave in trustworthy way? Do you often go back on your promises? In a nutshell, you need to be trustworthy to earn the trust.
It may be easy to dismiss these as something that is probably a “no-brainer” or “obvious”. Yet, I have seen many relationships with great potential crumble when couples aren’t careful in observing them. What do you think? Do you have your own “commandments” or “codes” that you follow? Are there anything you think I should add to the list above? Do let us know in the comment!