Relationships do get difficult. They are not always filled with smiles, laughter, and butterflies. Sometimes it can get frustrating or just flat out boring. The thing is, this is normal. Relationships aren’t always going to be flowing smoothly, there will be bumps, and curves and blocks on the road that you have to navigate. More often than expected, you have to figure out how to make it flow especially when it gets hard.
Every relationship is different and each one faces its own difficulties. However, the challenges that each relationship face can be traced back to several essential factors. To help you navigate them I have compiled seven of the most common pitfalls based on the experiences I had with my clients, Maybe some of them may even sound familiar to you and your partner. Try to understand what these entail and how to avoid them so that you and your partner can come out on top, thriving as a couple and enjoying the relationship you’re in!
- Communication is key
Things get difficult when your partner, once your best friend, is now someone you have difficulty talking to. Not just talking but also difficulty communicating and opening up. The key is to keep communication open, ensuring that you and your partner are able to talk about what needs to be talked about and more. This pitfall, as basic as it may seem, often become the root of the other challenges in the relationship. It is critical to be aware of the things that hold you both back from establishing effective communication. Communication is the basis for almost all of the other parts of your relationship.
- Sex isn’t just sex
When was the last time you made time to enjoy sex? Remember when it used to be fun? Surprise! it still can (and should) be. Learn to enjoy sex again together. Carve out time to take it slow, no rushing it. Enjoy each other’s presence and explore each other – be bold and try something new! Don’t let sex be the pitfall of your relationship, instead let it be one of the passions that keeps things going.
- Whether you’re broke or well-off: No Secrets
If you are in debt, just be honest. It is better to get it all out on the table for your partner to know and accept. Hiding financial issues will make an already stressful situation even worse – instead, be open and face any financial hardships together. Have a calm conversation about it and try to draft a financial plan as a couple and as individuals.
- This is not a one man show
Don’t let things pile up expecting the other to do it. If you see something needs done, either go ahead and do it or have a conversation about who should do what. Figure out who is better at what and go from there. Does one person like doing the dishes but hates vacuuming, whereas the other person doesn’t mind vacuuming and doesn’t like the dishes? Figure these things out together and figure out from there how the workload will be split.
- Make your relationship a priority
There’s a lot going on in life, there’s no doubt about that! Between your work, school, kids, whatever it may be, it is important that you are also making time for your relationship. Set aside time to do something as a couple to keep that connection alive – the rest of your life will be more enjoyable for have doing so. Wondering where to begin? We have designed a relationship challenge calendar for you to focus on the relationship. Take a look at it here
- Fight fair!
News flash, fights are going to happen. The best advice we can give about fights is to actually listen to what the person is saying and thinking before firing back with your side. You would be amazed how often fights are actually just a miscommunication. After fully taking in their side and what they have to say, try to peacefully explain your side too so that you both know what the other is thinking. From there, try to come up with a peaceful solution to whatever issue you are faced with. Keep the yelling to a minimum, save the drama, and don’t be afraid to be the bigger person sometimes.
- Develop trust and respect
Let your partner know what you need and be sure to find out what they need as well. Try this: For the next week, text your partner throughout the day asking how he or she is doing and if there is anything they need. No agenda. By learning each other’s needs and finding ways to support each other, you will not only make it a habit but also learn how to do it well. This builds up your dependability and creates trust and respect. Knowing what your partner needs and communicating what you need will help you develop a sense of trust that the other person will be there for you in the ways that you need them to be.
Relationships can be hard and will get difficult at different points in life, but don’t give up just because the going gets tough. They can also be extremely enjoyable and purposeful if you are willing to put the work. Stay conscious of these seven pitfalls and do what you can to ensure that you are your partner stay on top and keep enjoying each other. Relationships can be great if you are willing to put in the effort!