Relationship Goals: 10 Tips for a Long, Happy Relationship

relationship goals

Every couple is different. We all have our ways to express our love to our partners – be it your boyfriend, girlfriend or spouse, but one thing I’m sure is that we all want to keep a long, happy relationship. Who would like to invest time and emotions to somebody who s/he does not intend to keep? I guess this is the reason why we are all chasing forever (#MayForever) and why we are drafting our own relationship goals.


Teleseryes, books, and movies have its ways of cultivating in the minds of people (especially us girls) what is considered an ideal relationship. Aren’t you guilty? How many times have you wished that your guy is more like Xander (Forevermore) or Joaquin (Got to Believe) or Miggy (A Very Special Love trilogy)? In all honesty, haven’t you envied Agnes or Chichay or Laida even once? Didn’t Popoy and Basha ever become your ideal couple? LOL.


This is the reason why my hubby doesn’t really like it when I am hooked into a specific romance teleserye, movie or book. He said that these chick flicks should not be my basis of a perfect relationship. He argued about its sincerity, its application to real world. When I think about it, yes, there may be guys who go the extra mile to please their girls and express their love with over-the-top gestures, I guess a huge percentage of men is pragmatic. Many of them hated the drama, the icing on the cake. For most men, it is enough that they stay committed and loyal; that they love you in their own little ways. Perhaps my man is right. Most of the time, we ladies, tend to compare our relationship with what we see on screen or what we read on the books. We set standards based on these.


Hubby and I have been boyfriend-girlfriend for more than 3 years before tying the knot. Yesterday was our 11th month as husband and wife, and if there’s one thing that I am learning and accepting since we got married is the fact that he isn’t anybody like Popoy, Xander, Joaquin, or Miggy. He’s Christian, the man I fell in love with, married, and have a daughter with. Instead of looking for everything he isn’t, I’m slowly learning to appreciate what he is.


Marriage indeed has taught me a lot of things, and I’d like to share with you some of it. Although we are just a budding bond, I believe these 10 tips for a long, happy relationship can benefit you and your partner as well.


Say I Love You Always and Mean It


These two conditions must come together. Any chance you have, always say these 3 words to your spouse, and make sure that you mean it each time. There are times when you get into petty fights with your partner, and I tell you, just let your ill feelings go first before uttering these words. You both can distinguish a sincere “I love you” from a fake one.


Be Open with your Feelings at the Right Time


Communication is another key ingredient of a long, happy relationship. When you feel disappointed about your partner’s words or doings, you can always tell him/her about it when you think s/he’s ready to listen. Being honest with what you feel at the right time will make the other understand the very thing that’s making you annoyed without taking it too personally.


Never Compare your Spouse with an Ex


Need I say more? You married him/her for the right reasons, and your relationship with your ex didn’t work because it wasn’t meant to be so why open up about somebody in the past? This will just create invisible scars, which will definitely hurt your spouse over and over. There are people who clearly remember every word you say so make sure that all that comes out of your mouth is for the good of your relationship.


Choose to be Silent when you’re Angry


Words, just like time, are some of the things you can’t take back once you said ’em. Just recently, I have a cousin who was facing a challenge in her relationship with her boyfriend who happened to be in Canada. She told me the entire story, and while they both got their share of the misunderstanding, she was also aware of her mistake – that is saying something she didn’t mean and she definitely regret.


Moral of the story – it is better to keep mum than blurt out words you would regret later on. When you feel okay and your mind is clear, that is the only time you should talk to him/her. When you try to sort things out, make sure that you listen to the other while s/he speaks and never interrupt him/her. Wait for your turn to talk. Avoid blaming the other.


Spend Quality Time with Each Other


There’s a huge difference between being physically present but emotionally and mentally absent and being right beside your loved one 100%. Got my point? If you think that you would just be scrolling your phone or tablet, watching TV, or talking about things s/he may not be interested in, might as well postpone your date because you would just piss him/her off.


When you schedule an intimate time with your partner, free yourself from all distractions, and be in the moment. These are the moments you will remember when you’re old – how loved you made the other person feel and vice versa.


Have Some Me Time


I would also like to stress the importance of this especially for married couples. Being married makes you stay under a single roof and know all the nitty-gritty details about the other. Chances are you will discover so many quirks and habits that you don’t find attractive at all. The stresses of married life may also wear you out – bills to pay, keeping the household, taking care of the kid/s, etc. In our case wherein we both work online, most days we are together 24/7, and I know (even if he won’t admit it), there are days when we feel sick of each other. He wants the lights off at night, I want it on. He doesn’t eat vegetables, I want ’em badly. I can’t cook seafood because he got allergy. He forgets to keep the bathroom door closed after using it and I get angry. You know these kinds of little things that make you realize how different you are yet you always remind yourself how much you love the other person?


This is the reason why you always have to schedule a “me time” once a week. You can spend it however you want, but make sure that your spouse is aware of what you would do and where you would be at. How about getting a massage, foot spa, or pedicure? Or going out with your girl friends? Or shopping? Or dining alone? Anything you want that can rejuvenate your senses. Doing activities without your partner rekindles the flame and give you stories to share with him/her. Trust me, s/he’ll miss and love you even more.


Disclaimer: The only thing I would not allow my hubby to do for his “me time” is be in the company of friends who have bad reputations in places that I don’t deem acceptable like night clubs, discos, and bars. After all, hubby is not that type. I don’t like him going out with girl pals who I don’t share good vibes with either.


Always Do Random Acts of Love


A lot of times, we think that buying our spouse material things will make him/her happy. Perhaps there are requests that will really make him/her happy, but keep in mind that there’s more to blissful relationships than gifts. Often, the random acts of love are left undone.


Do simple, everyday things like cooking his favorite dish, giving her a kiss and a hug once she’s done with the laundry, offering to take care of the baby so she can take a nap, slipping sweet notes to his office bag before he leaves for work, etc. Doing things like these will spice up the relationship and turn ordinary days to memorable ones. Money is not always the name of the game. It’s all about making each other feel loved.


Always Appreciate Each Other’s Effort No Matter How Little or Big It Is


Now, it’s time that you reciprocate your partner’s random acts of love by expressing how grateful you are. Sometimes, life makes us so busy that we forget to verbally acknowledge the efforts of our spouse just because we think that s/he already knows that we do. Each of us needs recognition at times. In fact, acknowledging one’s acts of love will further encourage similar doings. You see, it is a two-way street. Give love and return love.


Build Intimacy


Men tend to crave for physical affection more than women. Make sure you are not rejecting your man when he’s in the mood for some cuddling. Maintaining intimacy releases happy hormones that make you feel more in love with each other.


Always Smile


Oh, this one’s something that I am working on. I’d have to credit my husband for this tip. LOL. He has always been complaining about my constant frowning and my being annoyed even at the simplest things easily. Well, I was already having mood swings before, but I guess it got worse with my contraceptive pills. While I have explained to him that my negative facial reactions are most of the time cause by him not remembering what I dislike, I guess I would still have to listen to him and just learn to accept the things I cannot change and move on with it. After all, I am just stressing myself even more. Haha!


Hubby says that smiling all the time will keep the home happy, and I’m sure it will.

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