When you want to have the best relationship you possibly can, rather than leaving it to chance or luck, you should look at what genuinely happy couples do and emulate them. There are actual behaviors that you can adopt that will ensure your relationship stands the test of time and whatever else life throws at it. We discuss 7 of the most important habits you can engage in as a couple below.
1. Share Time Together
Although on paper it may seem like common sense for having a strong relationship and bond, you’d be amazed how many couples neglect spending quality time together. Yes, it can be hard to organize if you have busy lives and your schedules don’t always align helpfully; but how are you supposed to connect if you don’t spend any time together.
The way happy and fulfilled couples sort this is by sitting down and MAKING time. Turn off all distractions, consider booking a babysitter and even if you can’t go out – make sure you are able to engage in proper conversations or do something fun together.
2. Understand Your Partner’s Idea Of Love
This is one of the most important habits on this list. We all express love in different ways, using very different languages. Okay, so your dad was always telling your mother how much he loved her and she appreciated it; it doesn’t mean that your partner will feel the same or that you should have to do it. Different people place value on different types of gestures and actions when it comes to relationships and it is not uncommon for two people in a relationship to have completely different ideas of how love should be expressed and shown.
It could be that you don’t know your partner’s preferred language of love and if that’s the case, you need to ask them. You may find that they have been trying to explain this to you and you have not picked up on it.
Ask him or her “what are the things I have done in the past to make you feel the most cherished and loved?” and you may be surprised to learn that it is often the smallest and seemingly insignificant things that mean the most. Body contact, cuddles and cooking special meals are some of the most common.
3. Share 20 Second Long Hugs Together At Least 2 Times A Day
When we say hug we don’t mean the kind of polite rigid way you might greet a friend. We mean proper holding close, hips touching bear hug style cuddle. You may be wondering why it should be specifically 20 seconds long. That is the time it takes for oxytocin to start working, which is also known as the cuddle hormone, that makes you both feel happy about everything, including your relationship.
So make it a habit to spend 20 seconds every morning hugging your partner before the day gets started and then repeat the process at the end of the day. Be warned though, once you start making this a habit; your partner will start to feel unloved and uncared for if you miss it out too often.
4. Learn How To Listen To Your Partner Properly
There is nothing you can do that will show your partner how much you love them than actually listening to them and paying attention when they speak to you. It doesn’t matter whether it’s about a meeting at work with their supervisor or deeper things like their feelings and thoughts; give them the attention they deserve as the most important person in your life.
The majority of people seem to struggle with listening to other people properly. It involves more than just hearing what they are saying. You need to switch off all distractions, put your phone or tablet away, make eye contact, forget your own thoughts for the time being and showing them that you genuinely care about them. Audible noises and physical gestures should also be used to show that you are fully engaged in what they are saying.
When you do listen to your partner properly without distraction, you show them that you see their feelings and thoughts as important as your own.