There are relationship hacks every couple needs to know.
Have you ever noticed when you are happy with your relationship you are happier in general? Have you noticed that when your relationship is going well, you feel better and are more productive at work? Have you noticed you’re more patient with the kids and the co-workers?
When your relationship is thriving, it seems like everything improves, including your health.
So, why in the world don’t we spend more time focusing on our relationships?
63 relationship hacks every couple needs to know:
- Like yourself. It is hard to be in a healthy relationship if you are in a state of self-loathing.
- Do the things you used to do. Think back to your first year together. How did you spend your time? Do that.
- Read The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman. Learn what makes your partner feel loved, heard, understood and appreciated. You might be very surprised what you discover.
- Ditch the ‘how was your day?’. Ask instead what made them laugh.
- Go to bed angry. This goes against old-school advice, but this is your relationship. You know you best. Sometimes, staying up only means spinning your wheels. Sometimes after some sleep, we can find perspective and common ground.
- Say thank you. Let your partner know you recognize and appreciate the small things as well as the big things.
- Choose wisely. Is being right more important than being loved? Sometimes, letting the small things slide is the healthiest thing for a relationship.
- Touch each other. A lot. Non-sexual touch is essential to letting your partner know you care, that you’re connected, that your bond is special.
- Be silly. Flash your partner. Jump on the bed. Sing and dance without music. Do something out of character for no other reason than being fun.
- Check your tone. Let’s face it, tone means everything. Listen to yourself talk. Would you want to be on the receiving end of your comments, questions or requests?
- Share goals. Write them down. Read them every month or every year. Build a life together and make your dreams and goals a priority.
- Cultivate gratitude. Gratitude improves your health, your sleep, makes you less materialistic and makes you a kinder, gentler soul. Start a gratitude journal about your partner and give it to them as a gift for a special occasion.
- Don’t get too busy for sex. Kids, stress, work, responsibilities, and fatigue can all take a toll on a couple’s sex life. Make it a priority. Remind each other how powerful your bond is.
- Be clear. If something is bothering you, say so. No one wins with the passive-aggressive answer, ‘Nothing. I’m fine.’
- Be constructive. ‘When you do …, I feel…’ opens doors for discussions. Lashing out, screaming, ‘You always … and you never care how I feel’ shuts down communication.
- See the best in your partner. Spend a week only seeking out positive attributes. Write ten or more down each day.
- Assume the best. When things come up or your partner isn’t communicating well, give them the benefit of the doubt. Assuming the best keeps you from jumping into defensiveness.
- Prioritize. If you are spending too much time pleasing friends and coworkers, it is time to re-think where your time and energy goes. Investing in your relationship saves heartache and drama and isolation later on.
- Have a competition. Compete who can be nicer by doing mundane tasks around the house or doing something special for the other person. Only rule? You can’t point out your good deeds. The fun is in the silence.
- Create a mental F*ck It Bucket. Decide what is important such as your each other, family, goals, your health. Everything else goes into the bucket. Your F*ck It Bucket might include keeping up with the neighbors, reading about tragedies, talking politics, accepting invitations you dread or having too much stuff.
- Commit to the relationship. When you are wounded, angry, alienated and you can’t stand the sight of the other person, focus on each other and the promises you’ve made. Love doesn’t make a relationship. Commitment does.
- Focus on your relationship. It is easy to think everyone else’s relationship is perfect. Keep your energies focused on your own and your relationship will thrive.
- Laugh. Together. At movies or comedians at yourself. Keep laughing. Laughing is good for your health and good for a relationship.
- Be alone. Of course, it is imperative to spend time together, but it is equally as important to be comfortable on your own.
- Stay out of his/her family dramas. It is not worth it. You will never win. Silence is golden.
- Travel together. Let loose. Build memories that will become talking points (and laughing points) over the years. Even travel disasters make for great stories later on.
- Say, ‘I like you.’ Sometimes the greatest compliment you can give a long-term partner is the reminder that not only do you love them, but you like them, would choose them time and time again.
- Plan ‘staff’ meetings. Planning a specific time each week or month to go over the mundane (but often emotionally charged) household tasks such as budgeting or childcare needs can greatly reduce anxiety. Tie it to a special treat such as a movie night or a meal at your favorite restaurant and you’ll look forward to it.
- Switch up your words. Instead of saying ‘I love you’, come up with other endearing sentiments such as, ‘You make me happy.’ Or ‘I would do anything for you.’
- Don’t interrupt. Listening, truly listening is important. Bulldozing kills conversations…and relationships.
- Turn off your phone. One of the most respectful things we can do in a relationship is turn off the phone. Don’t make your partner compete with social media. Give them your full attention.
- Go for a walk. Getting outside and slowing down without electronic distractions is a gift. Bonus points if you can walk somewhere beautiful.
- See them like your dog sees them. Shower your partner with love when they walk in the door. Be excited to have them home. Throw your arms around them. Kiss them.
- Work to change what you can. If you know you do something your partner hates, make it a point to change. If your partner can’t stand clutter, cleaning up before she gets home is easy enough to do.
- Allow things to not be perfect. Sometimes things are off balance. Sometimes disappointment happens. Sometimes there are bad days. Don’t freak out. Just love.
- Unplug. Set aside hours or days where you are not logged in and working or checking social media. It will all be there tomorrow.
- It isn’t You vs them. It is You and Them vs The Problem. Disagreements happen. Successful relationships are able to repair the partnership after conflict. Remember you’re on the same side.
- Give 90%. There is no 50/50. Each of you must give 90%, keeping 10% of your effort for the times when your needs must come first.
- Make yourself happy. It isn’t your partner’s responsibility to make you happy. Feeling rotten? Then learn how to make yourself happy: exercise, make new friends, get a hobby, get more sleep, challenge yourself. Your partner can’t complete you. Don’t expect them to.
- Decide to love your partner. Happily ever after doesn’t exist. Wake up and decide every day to love your partner. Some days it seems impossible and some days you’ll feel like you’ve won the lottery. If you’re only after the Hollywood version of love, you’re missing the point.
- Respect yourself, respect your partner. The truth is, there will be days you don’t like, let alone love your partner. Or even yourself. On those days, strive for respect. Respecting each other is binding.
- Talk openly, freely, frequently and even if it hurts. Bottling up your feelings or your thoughts or your dreams kills relationships.
- Never complain about your partner to anyone. Your partner is the only one you should complain to. Do not complain to your friends or your family. They can’t help you. Venting isn’t going to solve anything. Your partner is the only one who can help you figure out the answer.
- Think of yourself as a team. If one person isn’t happy, then the team is not succeeding. Talk it out. You both have an equal say.
- Say it. If something is bothering you in the relationship be willing to say it. Being vulnerable may be uncomfortable and saying it may hurt, but doing so can build trust and intimacy.
- Expect change and prepare for the unexpected. Everything will hit the fan one day: Death, moving countries, changing religions, changing political affiliations, illness, etc. Respect and admiration can help you weather even the most challenging changes.
- Keep in the present. Nothing makes an argument worse than bringing up the past. Keep focused. Don’t slip into old arguments.
- Cuddle. Physical affection is important. It makes you feel loved and appreciated. It brings you closer.
- Eat dinner at the table. Phones in another room. Look at each other. Talk.
- Let your partner teach you something. Teach each other something your good at. Paint, swing a golf club, bake, build a fire, ride bikes, discuss a book.
- Your way isn’t the only way. Allow your partner to take over ‘your world’ occasionally. If you never allow your partner to load the dishwasher or use the tools, you’re missing out. Share the joy, even for one day.
- Be lazy. Schedule a day if you have to, but have a day where no one expects anything, where you can be lazy, off the grid and allow for a day develop organically.
- Go on a bike ride. Bike rides are freeing. Share the day.
- Be their biggest cheerleader. Nothing says unconditional love like endless support.
- Envision their faces. Before a particularly difficult conversation, take a moment to close your eyes and remember his or her face on the day you fell in love or got married or at the birth of your first child. Remember why you fell in love with them, then start the difficult conversation.
- Take care of yourself. Don’t let yourself get so invested in your partner or kids or work that you forget to take care of yourself.
- Celebrate the simple. Not every adventure has to be grand or planned. Sometimes the quiet things you do together feed you the most.
- Remember what you like most about them. Remembering their quirky traits and their strengths can help pull you through the frustration of day to day life.
- Share an experience together. See a play, go to a concert, take in an art exhibition together. Talking about your take on the experience may lead you to realize how similarly (or how differently) you viewed it.
- Live for today. It is easy to ruin a relationship by focusing too much on the past or worrying too much about the future. Enjoy each other in this moment.
- Wake up early. Set your alarm 10 minutes before you need to wake up. Spend time with your spouse and wake up slowly.
- Show each other affection when you are in public. An arm around the shoulder or hand-holding can remind your partner how proud you are of them and your relationship.
- Feel lucky. The best relationships are the ones where both people feel like they are the luckiest person in the world. Foster that feeling in each other.
These are just some of the relationship hacks every couple needs to know. Play with this idea and create your own fail-proof ways to inject love, trust, and intimacy into your relationship. Everyone wins when a relationship thrives: you feel closer, you are happier, healthier and are more productive.
I love sharing relationship hacks. Sometimes we overcomplicate things. Simple is usually best, especially when it comes to relationships. I’m T-Ann Pierce, a transformational life and mindset coach, who helps her clients tweak their perspectives so they can begin loving the lives they are living. If you still have questions about how you can strengthen your relationship, contact me at 847.730.7531 or drop me a note at https://t-annpierce.com/contact-me/.