Relationships need a lot of love and a big commitment to continue going strong. The longer you are together the more effort it requires. It takes a genuine desire to remain a couple and to love each other through the good, bad and ugly of life as it unfolds.
So here you are, after many years together, feeling really unsure what the future holds for you. Or maybe you’re at a point where one or both of you has seemingly given up. Too much stress, too many arguments, so much damage and resentment, that you’re not sure you can make it through.
Here’s where it's time to make a decision. If the decision is you really love your partner and believe there is still something there, walking away before you try will always leave you wondering what if. If you’re down to give it another shot and are ready to put some effort into rekindling that spark, here’s some ways you can use love as a guide and reboot your relationship.
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1. First things first. It’s time to surrender and hold ourselves accountable.
Before anything else, it’s time to really look at the state of your life together with honest and open eyes. There are always two sides to every story and everyone has a part to play. What was yours? Are you holding yourself accountable for your actions? If not, it's time to do just that. We have to surrender to what is and be honest about where things have gone wrong. We need to accept responsibility for what we have done and for our role in the problems. Being accountable and surrendering to the state of your relationship, takes a lot of love and shows an honest willingness and commitment to making things right again.
2. Forgive each other.
Forgiveness is an intention fully guided by love. There has to be a genuine desire and a want to forgive. Through the arguments and motions of life, you have built walls between each other. Walls full of resentment and anger that when left untreated, turned into separation, disconnect, and a growing mound of silence and misunderstanding. In the book Spirit Junkie: A Radical Road to Self-Love and Miracles, Gabby Bernstein writes, “Forgiveness tears down the ego’s walls of separation and reunites us as one. The anger and fear of the ego’s illusion disappear. There’s no more “he said, she said.” It all just lifts. It feels as though chains have been removed and you’ve been set free from a lifetime of terror.” Learning to forgive one another will lift the burdens of anger. It will heal the disconnect, the hurt and the feelings of resentment. The wound that was once so open and filled with sadness, is now the place where a new love and a new light enters.
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3. Talk like you love each other.
Now that the healing has begun, it's time to pay attention to how you have been talking to one another. If trouble has been brewing for awhile, more than likely the words exchanged have not been so loving and supportive. If you really want to rebuild, its time to be mindful of your actions. Are you nagging? Are you name calling? Are you yelling rather than discussing the issues? The words we say to each other and the tone we use in moments of anger can be so incredibly damaging. Love this person and love this relationship enough to talk to them in a way that makes them feel good again. There are probably so many things they’ve been longing to hear from you. Tell them how proud you are, tell them they have your support, they have your love and they have your attention. Before you know it, those very same loving words and intentions you are giving to them, will head right back into your direction.
4. A smile always looks good on the person you love.
Laughter really is the best medicine. Remember how much fun you had together in the beginning? You’ve already spent enough time on stressful situations and everyday responsibility, now it's time to start adding fun moments back into the mix. Go spend some quality time together and reconnect in ways that bring happiness to the conversation. Look at each other again with smiles on your faces rather than anger or sadness in your eyes. Building memories, sharing a good laugh, and enjoying the journey together is so important.
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5. Actions speak louder than words.
I read a story recently about a man who wanted to rebuild his relationship. He realized he still loved his wife and wanted to fix their disconnection. He decided at the start of each day, he would ask his wife what he could do to make her day better. At first she would respond with an attitude and dismissed his actions. What unfolds in this story, is that as the husband continued this pattern, the wife started to feel better; more loved and more appreciated. His showing his love for her, made her want to be better for him. She reciprocated his efforts and began to do more for her husband as well. Everyone wants to feel like they matter and that the person they choose to spend their life with is paying attention to what they need to be happy and thrive. What could you do to ease the stress of your spouse’s day? The smallest effort can have the biggest impact and will show your partner that their happiness, their love and this relationship, is important to you.
Rebuilding a relationship is never easy but so worth it if you are willing to put in the effort. Using love as your guide, show your person how much this relationship means to you. Let them know you are here for the long haul and that you value sharing this journey with them. Show them you are ready to move forward, on to new amazing adventures, together.
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Tell us in the comments: What's your best tip for maintaining your own relationships?