Hey babes! Yesterday (July 1st, 2018) marked 10 years ago that I started dating my husband. I was only 16 years old and he was 17 and we were going into our senior year of high school. Over the course of those 10 years, I feel like I’ve learned quite a bit about how to make a relationship work. I wanted to share with you 10 of the things I’ve learned in 10 years.
Figure out how you best communicate early on
One thing DJ and I realized early on in our relationship is that texting doesn’t work for us. It’s easy to misunderstand a text as far as wording or the tone goes. So we stick to talking over the phone that way we can avoid any miscommunications that were occurring through text. It’ll be different for everyone but find out what works for you and just stick to that.
Learn how to love them
I’m sure the majority of people have read The Five Love Languages by now, but if you haven’t I’d highly recommend it. We all tend to give love to our spouses the way we’d like to receive it. In order to better love your spouse know how they need to be loved and love them that way. Learn to speak their love language.
When you’re first starting a relationship after being single for quite a while, you have to realize it’s not all about you anymore. There will be times in your life where you do need to make you a priority, but recognizing moments when you can be more selfless is a great ability to have in a relationship.
When you’re not dreaming together, you’re not growing together. Talk and dream about the future often. This isn’t to say don’t live in the present, but also plan for your future together. We started our relationship and our marriage young. Some would say too young because we had a lot of growing to do still. But when you dream together and plan together you’ll continue to grow together.
Be a team
Make decisions together even the small ones. When you’re a team, everything seems to flow more seamlessly together. It gets hard when you realize you’re fighting on opposite sides. As soon as you realize you’re in it together and become one, you’ll work better together.
Check in with your spouse regularly
Ask them how they’re doing. It’s easy to get caught up in daily life and not notice when something is bothering your spouse. When you check in regularly you give them the opportunity to talk about things and be a listening ear, which we could all use once in a while.
Don’t just make a decision on your own when you know your spouse should be involved. With almost any decision, we ask each other first before taking action. This isn’t meant to be for control, but more so out of love and respect. It’s also a way to communicate with my spouse and make sure we’re on the same page about whatever the topic.
In any relationship, we shouldn’t base our love on conditions. If you do the dishes I’ll love you, if you do the laundry I’ll love you. These are obviously silly examples, but we’re human and sometimes we have ridiculous conditions or expectations for those we love. Loving unconditionally is hard at times, but it’s definitely something to work toward daily.
Don’t sweat the small stuff
It’s so easy to get annoyed and frustrated by the little things. Think about the big picture though and try to see if what you’re annoyed about really matters in the grand scheme of things. More often than not, they don’t actually matter and you can try to laugh about those things instead.
Just knowing that a relationship takes hard work puts you ahead of the rest. Your happiness in your relationship is only temporary unless you continue to work hard at it. It’s not just something you can work on here and there. It’s an everyday decision and it’s one worth working for.
Tell me what you’ve learned in your relationship. I loooooove love and want to continue learning how to make it last.