9 LITTLE THINGS HAPPY COUPLES DO EVERY DAY
How to build a long-lasting relationship
Everyone wants to live ‘happily ever after’. While we’d love this to happen naturally, in reality there’s a level of effort involved.
Grand gestures and gifts are nice, but they’re not enough to sustain a relationship and keep you both happy. To put it simply, material things don’t bring long-lasting true happiness.
So what does? Well, it’s the little things you do for one another daily. Whether it’s something selfless or something to keep your bond strong. The little things act as a buffer when times are tough.
It’s easy to take your partner for granted – especially when you’ve been together for years or decades. However, if you continually connect on a daily basis, even for a few minutes, you’re more likely to join the tribes of happy couples out there.
Here are 9 little things happy couples do:
1. Kiss and show each other affection
When you’re with your partner, are you still regularly kissing and connecting?
Don’t underestimate the power of offering them a hug, holding their hand, or looking into their eyes. These gestures act as a reminder of your love and can help strengthen the bond and connection between you.
Also, just because you’ve been together forever doesn’t mean flirting is out of the equation. Compliment your partner when they get a new haircut or outfit. Anytime you find yourself admiring them, tell them!
2. Be attentive
When your partner talks to you, what’s your body language showing them? Are you distracted by your own to-do list for the day or engrossed in your phone’s social media feed?
Happy couples show each other respect by giving each other their undivided attention. Sometimes this can be tricky, but learning to recognise your partner’s cues to connect and responding in an attentive way shows you care about what they have to say. If you’re in the middle of typing a text or juggling dinner preparation, you could say something like “I’d love to hear more about it. Just give me a few minutes to finish this, so I can give you my full attention.”
We spend so much of our day working, sleeping, or running around with the kids, so it’s essential to value those rare moments with your partner; when it’s just the two of you engaged in conversation.
3. Check in with each other
When life gets busy, it’s easy to fall into the trap of only discussing chores, appointments, or the kids’ extracurricular activities. But thanks to mobile phones, you can easily touch base with your partner throughout the day to say ‘hi’ or ask how their day is going.
You could simply send a text while in a queue or make a call on your lunch break. Checking in lets your partner know you’re thinking about them and care.
4. Show gratitude
Rather than complain about the things your partner does wrong, thank them for what they’re doing well. Acknowledge their qualities and regularly show gratitude for being your partner in life.
Remember to say ‘I love you’ and ‘Have a good day’ before parting ways in the morning. It will put you both in a good mood for the day ahead.
5. Treat your partner
When you’ve been together a while, you mightn’t think it’s necessary to do little favours for your partner anymore. But these favours leave you both feeling thought of and appreciated.
So offer to make a coffee, tea, or breakfast in bed. Or surprise them with a treat you bought from the shops. Or even help with a chore they hate doing – before they ask you to do it!
6. Have fun with each other
Life isn’t meant to be taken seriously. When life throws you lemons, you should both be laughing as you try to catch them.
Play tricks on your partner. Appeal to their sense of humour by showing them silly YouTube clips or sending them funny memes. Don’t be afraid to be goofy yourself.
Showing a sense of humour is not only a great coping mechanism for life’s stressors. It’s also a great way to bond!
7. Forgive and forget
If something annoys you about your partner, try to think of the big picture. Experiencing resentment will just build inside of you and create unnecessary tension.
Pick your battles and try to forgive your partner for the little things. Yes, they might have forgotten to take the bins out before the garbage truck came. Or accidently deleted a recording of the footy game. But nobody is perfect. Remember – you’d want forgiveness in a similar scenario.
8. Go to bed together
While it’s not always easy, especially if shift work is involved, but try to go to bed together a few nights a week. Not necessarily for sex either.
Just cuddling and talking about your day in bed can have a positive impact on your relationship. Also try kissing or cuddling first thing in the morning before embracing the day.
9. Support your partner's dreams
Are you familiar with your partner’s dreams and goals for the future? If yes, you need to care about them and support your partner as much as possible. And if you don’t know what their hopes and dreams are, then ask!
Happy couples cheer each other on towards their goals. They celebrate achievements and offer a hug or a sounding board when times are tough.
How’d you go? Remember, creating a healthy and long-lasting relationship takes time and commitment. Even relationships with the best intentions can fall off the track now and then.
By trying these 9 little steps each day, you’ll create a stronger connection that leads to a more desired and loving relationship.
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Kylie Lepri is a registered Psychotherapist, Marriage & Relationship Counsellor, Clinical Supervisor and Training Consultant. Since 2003 she has helped individuals and couples work through life stressors, develop new goals and create better relationships. Get Kylie’s FREE ebook: 5 Proven Strategies to help manage stress today, by joining her newsletter below.