While most of us try to stay positive about relationships, reality always seems to sucker punch us back to our senses. The fact remains that despite all the advice we seek or the knowledge that we have, most relationships fail. There is simply no way to argue this fact. When it comes to creating and sustaining a lasting relationship, most of us are our own worst enemies.
"What am I doing wrong?" Everyone has asked this question at some point. We tend to think that there is a simple answer to such a complex question; however, there is none. There are many things that could lead to the demise of a relationship, so trying to pinpoint one issue or self-analyze could be difficult. So maybe it would help to point out signs that the relationship is failing before it is too late.
We all want to believe that we could easily sense the end of a relationship coming. But the truth is, many of us cannot and need a little help. To that end, here are three ways to ruin a relationship and have a one-way ticket to splitsville.
1. Enjoying the honeymoon.
2. Picking wrong battles.
3. Believing in yourself.
The good news is that these three does not necessarily mean a relationship is over. There is always hope, especially when both partners recognize the signs and have decided to allow their relationship flourish. The best advice is for each partner to talk out their concerns and learn when and how to compromise. The relationship will work if both parties are committed on taking action to change it.
Enjoying the honeymoon
Like a moth to the flame, we all love and are drawn to a good infatuation. There is nothing like the newness of someone. Finally finding someone who truly gets you is great, especially if the object of your infatuation meets those infamous dating checklist "must haves." But we have all heard that the honeymoon phase does not last a thousand times. So, why do we continue to insist that there is no reason for an infatuation to end?
The main reason we become head over heels is because we are designed that way. It is nature's plan. If we were not blinded by our infatuation, we would not be able to see beyond our love interest's obvious flaws. Instead, we would all remain single and live our love lives through the fairytale of Hollywood. So, milk your infatuation for all its worth trying not to be bitter when things go sour.
Before the honeymoon ends, have a strategy in mind. Back when things are going well devise a plan because as fate tells us, it most probably will end. Remember we will make one another angry at times and wonder what we ever saw in each other. When this happens, promise not to attack, leave, or hold on to our resentment. Once the rocky patch has smoothed, the relationship is right where it supposed to be.
Picking wrong battles
We have all heard the saying, "pick your battles." This sounds like a sure way to reduce unnecessary fights, but how do we suppose to pick the right battle? To reduce the number of disagreements in a relationship, smarten up. How to do this? Before offering unwanted advice or criticism, ask one simple question: Does this affect me? If it does not, say nothing and do not pick the battle.
Couples that have sustained a good relationship, who are really in love with each other, have learned the one constant thing in a relationship. We are not always supposed to get along. In fact, more than often, we will drive each other nuts! By no means does this mean to act crazy or feel crazy. What it does means is that by pushing each other's buttons will be the only way to find out where they all are. Once a couple knows where the relationship is, they will be able to heal the wounds of those heated arguments.
Conflicts will occur just as infatuation will end. The question is not if a couple will experience conflict but when and how often. The solution is staying abreast and having an approach to all problems. Remember conflict will always arise; it is healthy in relationships. In fact, a relationship without conflict is always dead on arrival. When a conflict occurs, promise not to attack, leave, or cave in to please one another. Always counter conflicts as an opportunity to end potential future problems.
Believing in yourself
A good, healthy relationship is always between two individuals who believe in themselves. When one knows that he or she is capable of anything they put their mind to, they feel confident and powerful. As infatuation fades and conflict arises, it usually affects many in a negative way causing some to question their self-worth. Do not be alarmed; this is normal. Our brains are wired to respond to hurtful emotions as life threatening.
So what does this mean for relationships? Whenever we experience painful feelings, we instinctively shut down. This is our body's initial coping mechanism to emotional pain. But when dealing with another person, completely shutting down is not an option or a feasible thing to do. How could one sustain a relationship in which they do not know how to control their actions and reactions?
The best way to counteract emotional pain is to not lose sight of who you are and learn to "sift" through emotions like a lump in flour. The best way to overcome the urge to become emotionally distance is to identify the specific emotion that causes the most trouble. Once this becomes a conditioned behavioral, the relationship will become far less of a challenge. One will be able to remain at their very best self.