Now you may ask why we would write an article about developing better relationships. The reason is because I believe that those who are in a relationship will be significantly and directly affected in all areas of their life by how that relationship is going, and how healthy that relationship is.
Research has proven that those who are happy at home are more productive and less stressful at work. Developing a better relationship with your mate can help you develop a better life and a better business! Here are some thoughts to chew on for developing a strong and healthy relationship with your mate.
Listen. Communication is the key to a lasting relationship and listening is the key to communicating. Too often when we are quiet we are not listening, but waiting to speak. Instead of listening to what our mate is saying, and intently trying to understand them, very often we are making mental notes of what we would like to say in response. This is particularly true for us males. We often are trying to find the weakness in our mate’s argument, rather than really listening to the words that they’re saying and the manner in which they’re saying it. Why not take some time this week trying to internalize and understand your mate’s words and feelings?
Schedule a regular time to go out or spend time together. With today’s busy lifestyles, it is too easy to put our relationships on the backburner and take them for granted. While we might have every intention of spending regular time with our mate, we often find ourselves driven by a schedule that has us running in every direction and leaving us little time for our most important relationships. Work gets in the way. The kids get in the way. Our hobbies get in the way. We need to realize the value in the importance of that relationship with our mate and its effect on our total life. Then we need to make spending time with our mate a major priority by scheduling a specific time at least each week to get alone together, talk, and simply renew our relationship. Be sure to set some time aside each week to rediscover each other and enjoy your time together. Pencil it into your schedule and don’t give up that spot. In fact, it is probably best if you and your mate sit down and decide what night will work each and every week, then put it into your daytimer. If someone asks you if you’re available at that time, you tell them you already have an appointment. In the long run, that time that you spend with your mate will help you to become more of a success than you could ever mention.
Consider your mate’s interests more important than your own. When each person has decided to give of themselves to the other, you form a reciprocating relationship of love, concern, and devotion. When you come to a place where you disagree or where the two of you have differing opinions, try to get to the point where you can consider what your mate likes as more important then what you would like to do. The simple decision to do this goes a long way toward developing a healthy relationship!
Learn your mate’s love language. There is a lot of talk recently of love languages. What this is, is that each individual has certain ways they receive love from other people. Some people like to have time spent with them. Others like gifts, small or large. Still others respond best to personal touch. And others appreciate verbal affirmation. Our tendency is to show love the way that we like to receive love, but what
will recharge our relationship fastest is to find out what way our mate likes to receive affirmations of our love. To next time you get a chance to speak to your mate, ask them which of the above ways they like best to receive your demonstration of love. Then make a conscious effort to begin showing your love to them in that manner.
Do the small things you did when you first fell in love with your mate. Do remember when you were first in love? Remember the small things you did show your love to your mate? But as time went along, you probably began to get weighed down with simply living life and forgot the small things that made the difference in the beginning. Things like a phone call in the middle of the day just to talk or say “I love you,” an appreciative note, flowers, gifts, and opening doors. Re-charge your relationship by consciously going back and doing the small things that you did when your love first began to grow.
Forgive. I’ve done a lot of work with couples were having troubles, and one of the most common elements I find that is working against the development of their relationship is that they are holding something against the other and they aren’t willing to forgive. The fact is that your mate is going to fail you from time to time. We need to understand that. What we do when we get to that point however, is what will make all the difference in the world. In a relationship that is going to last, the people involved are committed to forgiving one another. Those who’s relationships last longest, and will be the healthiest, are those who are committed to forgiveness.
I hope these thoughts are helpful to you in recharging your love relationship. I truly believe that if we will put these principles into practice we will see our relationships grow in ways they never have before, and that in turn will make our whole life better.