This sounds like a given but communication is completely underestimated. Saying ”you never did that and you always do this”, is more criticism than it is communication. Remember a huge part of effective communication is listening to what your partner has to say so perhaps lay down some ground rules such as no interrupting until the other has finished and make time to talk to each other about things which may be bothering you to avoid future misunderstandings.
Respect your Equal
Gone are the days of the man being the breadwinner and head of the household. In today’s society it is the norm for both partners to go out to work so it is essential that both share the ‘chores’ at home. This doesn’t mean drawing up a spreadsheet to ensure everything is split very precisely down the middle (although you can if you want!), but what it does mean is be clear about who has to do what and don’t take each other for granted.
It’s all too easy to get bogged down by work, life, friends, family, chores etc but you must never forget to make time for your partner. Seeing them for ten minutes before work and for a couple of hours in the evening does not constitute as ‘quality’ so ensure you make time for one another just as you would for any other important people in your life. Perhaps set aside a ‘date night’ to ensure you get at least one evening of quality time together each week.
Be your own person
Remember that you don’t just form the other half to a couple and that you are your own person. Make sure you maintain outside activities and see your friends regularly. This will give you things to talk about with your partner and they won’t feel responsible for your happiness.
Make an effort
It’s great to feel at home and comfortable with your other half but if not showering all weekend, slobbing around in your PJs, picking your toenails and passing wind in front of them has become a regular occurrence then perhaps consider scrubbing up now and then. Taking pride in our appearance will show our partners we are still willing and interested in making an effort for them.
Get help when you need it
Those who don’t experience a shaky patch in their marriage are both very lucky and few and far between. If you are at a crossroads then speak up and seek help from experts.
For information about relationship coaching please visit our fact-sheet here.