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Being Best Friends First & 15 Other Things That Create Lifelong Relationships

Relationships, no matter what type they are, can be tricky. You fight, you separate, you get back together… It seems like a never-ending cycle, right? Trust us when we say that we feel you. Your emotions are valid even if they sometimes get a little out of control. It’s fine to have strong feelings when you’re dealing with things alone. But you have to include some communication and articulation when you’re dealing with your partner. Trying to communicate with each other is one of the most important aspects of a relationship, and we’re confident that pretty much everyone would agree.

Communication opens the door to discussion, compassion, and really being able to support each other. Just think of the way you and your best friend communicate! You two feel no shame in texting each other whenever you need to. You’re able to work out your arguments and come out with a smile on your faces. Wouldn’t it be great if you and your partner could be like that? Spoiler alert: You two can be! In fact, you should be! This is the secret to all those amazing, long-lasting relationships. That’s not all, though. Here are a few tips and tricks to getting your relationship to be lifelong.

16Letting Their Mistakes Be Mistakes, And Not Personal Flaws

Here’s something that many of us fall victim to not just in our romantic relationships, but also in our day-to-day lives. Have you ever seen someone running after the bus, only to think “well, if you had just been on time”? Try changing that thinking into something along the lines of “well, if only the timing worked out better”. It’s subtle, but it makes a huge difference. When you attribute a negative action to a flaw in someone’s personality you’re basically building up reasons to dislike them. You’re focusing on their flaws, whether they’re real flaws or not. You’ll find it easier to forgive your partner for negative things if you classify those things as mistakes. That way you two are on the same side, and you’re not being blinded by those exaggerated personal flaws.

15Take A Page Out Of Elsa’s Book And Let It Go!

Yes, we did make a reference to a popular cartoon movie. And you know what? We’re not sorry. If you hate it you can go ahead and let it go… Just like what you should do with your partner! Don’t take this the wrong way; we’re absolutely not suggesting you let your partner go at the first hint of a fight. We’re not suggesting you let your partner go at all. If you’re reading this it means you’re likely in it for life. One way to ensure that it is lifelong is to let things go. Let go of grudges, resentment, and long-standing anger. You’re better off retaining your positivity than your negativity. This will keep a positive energy in the relationship and will allow you two to move past your little day-to-day issues.

14Repairing Tears Before They Become Breaks

How do those tears become breaks? If you’ve ever left wet towels on the floor or accidentally eaten your partner’s leftovers, you know that it’s the little tears that can build up to become one big hole. So what if you didn’t have any malicious intent behind your action. Your partner doesn’t know that when they first discover those missing leftovers. They’re just sad and disappointed. Resentment can build if these things keep happening without any acknowledgment from you. Eventually, the pressure builds and then one day it’s not just an argument about wet towels or leftovers; it’s an argument about absolutely everything that’s ever happened. You need to acknowledge a mistake before it gets added to the negativity pile. This way you’re repairing the little stuff before it turns into one big mess.

13Build Your Relationship Through Playing… But Not With Each Other’s Hearts

One of the most important aspects of a relationship is the capacity to have fun with each other. When you’re looking for a lifelong partner make sure you’re looking for someone you can laugh with. The play takes away the seriousness of life. It’s a way to decompress and de-stress, like when you were a kid. Everyone’s favorite class was recess… So why did we stop? Keeping the play in a relationship builds the energy that a partnership needs. Not to mention how it also puts enjoyment and pleasure at the forefront of your mind. When you two are both relaxed and enjoying yourselves it’s clear that you two are on the path to success and a lifelong relationship. Everyone wants someone who’ll make them happy, after all!

12Know That Not Every Argument Needs To Have A Solution

Unless you’re dating a clone of yourself, you’re never going to find someone who agrees with you 100% on absolutely everything. One of you is going to like caramel ice cream over chocolate, or dip their fries in mayo instead of ketchup. One of you will think the other is wrong. And that’s okay. In serious, long-term relationships you’re not going to be on the same page about everything. Ideally, you and your partner will agree on the important things. Stuff like money, cleanliness, and moral values. It’s okay to argue about the small stuff, though. Life’s small stuff doesn’t really matter at the end of the day, which is why it’s sometimes better to agree to disagree. It’s the big stuff that you should pick your battles over.

11Commitment Means Choosing Your Partner Every Day

If you’re in a long-term relationship it’s fair to say that you’ve decided to make a commitment to that person. Whether you’re in an open, polyamorous, or otherwise organized relationship doesn’t matter. You and your partner(s) have agreed to be together. That means that the relationship is a commitment. You’ve committed to being with each other! That commitment needs to be reaffirmed and consciously chosen every day. If you’re finding yourself resenting the relationship or not wanting to pick your partner, maybe it’s time to leave. Choosing to be with your partner or partners is a definite way to ensure that your relationship lasts through the summer. Lifelong partnerships seem so simple, then: it’s just making the same choice for the rest of your life! That shouldn’t sound scary, either… If you’re with the right person.

10Communicate What’s Bad AND What’s Good

Whether you’re happy with the way things are going or you’re upset about some issues that are arising, you need to talk to your partner. Giving your partner a cold shoulder is only going to shove a wedge between you two. They can’t read your mind, just like how you can’t read theirs. You don’t necessarily have to communicate everything, though. Oversharing is definitely a thing, and it’s definitely not going to end well if one of you is doing it and making the other one mad. There are different standards for communication, and it’s okay if you two don’t totally align. You can make it work. But to make it work forever means you need to be comfortable talking about successes and failures; good things and bad things. There’s no improvement unless you can discuss what’s wrong!

9Knowing When To Compromise, And When To Stand Your Ground

In the same way that you two can agree to disagree, you can also find yourself easily getting pushed around if you have a strong-willed partner. While people are prone to calling compromise the be-all-end-all of relationship advice, it’s not necessarily the mind-blowing tip that you might have thought. Compromises are great if they’re real compromises. Many times compromises only mean giving up something you want though, with your partner retaining all of what they want. Learning when to stand up for yourself and say “No, I don’t want to do this again” is a great way to ensure a lifelong relationship, even if it seems counter-intuitive. Your partner will be able to trust that you’re communicating when something doesn’t sit well and that you advocate for what you need. It empowers them to do the same.

8Kindness Will Keep Your Love Alive…

We all need kindness. The first thing we teach kids is how to be kind to their peers. Sharing, listening, and not hitting each other might be givens when you’re adults, but it’s always good to be reminded of how far kindness actually goes. Kindness doesn’t just mean doing your dishes or telling your partner when you’ll be home from work. Courtesies are great, but the special stuff will really spark your relationship. Pick a flower (not from someone’s garden) and bring it home to your partner. Leave a special treat out for them for when they’re home from work. Rub their shoulders when they’re hunched over that laptop working on their latest short story. Kind moments don’t cost anything and keep you and your partner mutually invested in the relationship.

7…But Work Will Keep The Relationship Going

Maybe the mutual investment is a given in your relationship. You and your partner are good at surprising each other with kissy-face emojis and shoulder rubs. So… What’s the problem? For a lot of couples, it’s complacency. You can’t grow complacent in a relationship. You and your partner both need to work on things in order to fix them and make them better. Working at things means you’re listening to each other and reassuring each other that you’re happy in the relationship. Sharing responsibilities, even if you’re not living together yet, is also a good indicator that you two are both putting work into the relationship. If you keep going with these sorts of compassionate, helpful behaviors, you’re going to find that things just end up working out.

6Giving What You Want To Receive (Yes, In Everything)

Being “fair” sometimes doesn’t work out the way we want it to. Different people need different things, but to treat your partner in a way that you wouldn’t want to be treated isn’t very nice. If you expect them to tell you when they’re coming home, but you don’t tell them, you might want to re-evaluate your expectations. Giving what you want to receive is the best way to set up your lifelong relationship. Doing small kindnesses, complimenting your partner, and basically setting the standard for the way you want to be treated is the best thing to do. If you find you’re still not satisfied despite showing them what you want, talk to them. Communication is key, after all. The trick to this tip, though? You need to make sure you’re paying attention to what your partner is giving you in return!

5Respecting The Parts Of Them You Don’t Like

In the same way that we’re not going to agree with absolutely everything our partner thinks, feels, or believes, we’re not going to like every single part of our partners all the time. Some days your partner’s optimism will get on your nerves, or you’ll resent how naturally lucky they are. Other days you’ll love these things about them just as much as you love their smile or their eyes. Here’s a secret, though: you don’t need to love everything about them all the time. You can dislike some of their habits. The only catch is that no matter if you like or hate something, you have to respect it. Respecting them as a whole person, as well as their individual qualities, shows that you know you’ve signed up for all of them. Not just the good days and good qualities.

4Meeting Your Partner’s Basic Needs

We’re not talking the low-tier stuff on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. We’re talking about the serious, super important three basic needs in a relationship. Will Meek, PhD, says that companionship and belonging, verbal and physical affection and emotional support and validation are the three basic needs in a relationship. These are the three most basic things that you and your partner can do to have a successful relationship. If you’re not meeting your partner’s basic needs, you’re probably not going to have lifelong success. Sharing your day-to-day with each other, offering intimate moments, and helping your partner when the going gets rough are things that should be important to you two. These actions will move your relationship successfully forward and will help you in the long run.

3Everyone’s Favourite: Plain, Old Listening

Call it communicating, call it compromise, call it whatever. The key to everything is always listening. People tell you everything you need to know. We miss out on it because we don’t listen, though. Paying attention to how people move, sit, breathe, and choose their words can tell you more about them than words ever will in many cases. We give away a lot when we’re not paying attention. Apply this to your partner. You’ll soon start to realize that they don’t like when the music goes above a certain volume. You’ll then be able to improve their life by keeping the volume lower. Don’t stress about missing information, either. You’re always welcome to ask questions; asking engaged and interesting questions is an important part of listening, too.

2Remembering To Be Mindful Of What You Need

We can get so caught up in what our partners need that we forget about our own mental and emotional health. You’re not going to be in any position to fulfill your relationship’s needs if you’re running on empty. Mindfulness is important in every aspect of your life, but especially when you’re dealing with yourself. Taking the time to take care of you is important too. You need to be able to refresh and recharge while you’re in your relationship. Figuring out how to retain your interests and friends is one thing we all struggle with when we’re in a serious relationship. Take some time every week to reconnect with yourself. You could go for a walk, or sit and treat yourself to a coffee and a good book. Whatever it is, it needs to be all about you to make it worthwhile.

1Being Each Other’s Best Friend Before Romance

All these tips are great if you’re looking to build a relationship from scratch, but can feel overwhelming… Especially when you’re trying to balance all of these awesome tips at once. The best thing to remember? Just be each other’s best friend. You two want to be together forever. Start with being there for each other every moment; eventually, those moments will stitch together to create a life. Invite in the playfulness and passion that you and your best friends have. You and your partner good to go for many years. You’ll never lose sight of what each other needs because you’ll be so in tune with one another. Besides, there’s no one better you could spend your life with than with your absolute best friend. It sounds like a recipe for happiness… Even if it’s not perfect all the time.

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