Maintaining a healthy and happy relationship requires effort and attention from both partners. It can be helpful to seek advice from experts in the field of relationships to help guide you and improve your connection with your partner.
Here are five pieces of relationship advice you can embrace in 2023.
1. Communicate openly and honestly. Effective communication is essential in any relationship. It’s important to be honest and open with your partner about your needs and feelings, and to listen actively when they are communicating with you. By being open and honest with each other, you can build trust and understanding in your relationship.
2. Understand why you’re fighting. Whether it be about dirty dishes or looking after the kids, all couples fight. But as psychotherapist Esther Perel explains, there are often deeper issues behind these common conflicts. “The deeper issues that drive escalation are rarely about the content of our fights…they’re about the needs, vulnerabilities, and biases that get triggered over and over.”
Three common themes, identified by couples therapy researcher Howard Markman, often emerge: power and control, care and closeness and respect and recognition. Perel’s advice is to try identify the underlying dynamics. “When we work together in a healthy way to understand how these patterns came to be, we shift our relational trajectory toward how we can help each other through it.”
3. Show appreciation and gratitude. It’s easy to take your partner for granted, especially if you have been together for a long time. It’s important to show appreciation and gratitude for your partner, and to regularly express your love and affection. Small acts of kindness and appreciation can go a long way in strengthening your bond and deepening your connection.
4. Make time for each other. It’s easy to get caught up in the busyness of everyday life, but it’s important to make time for your relationship. This can be as simple as setting aside regular date nights or making an effort to spend quality time together. By making time for each other, you can maintain a strong connection and keep your relationship healthy.
5. Seek support. No relationship is perfect, and it’s normal to encounter challenges and conflicts. When these challenges arise, it can be helpful to seek support from a therapist or counsellor. They can provide unbiased guidance and help you and your partner work through any issues you may be facing.
By following these pieces of relationship advice from experts, you can strengthen your bond with your partner and build a healthy, happy relationship. It’s important to remember that every relationship is different, and what works for one couple may not work for another.