All that noise I made when TGC first started about not wanting to run into love and even I have been swooned by the winter lovebug! I won’t lie; I’m completely ‘googly-eyed’ by my boyfriend right now and I know there are others out there who are feeling just as loved and special as I am. That’s a good thing. We deserve to feel this way. If you haven’t made a love connection quite yet, don’t fret… it’ll come. But today’s entry is for those of us who have indeed been bitten by the lovebug.
In no way am I hoping that you’re relationship will fall short, but it’s never a bad idea to prepare for the ‘just in case’.
All too often, as women, we invest so much of ourselves into our relationships. This isn’t a bad thing. The ‘bad’ occurs when we invest so much of ourselves into the ‘we’ that if the relationship doesn’t make it, the concept of an individual you is completely fluid and all over the place. In other words, you lose yourself. If this has happened to you already, it’s ok. I’m here to give you advice on building yourself back up. If it hasn’t happened to you–don’t fail to realize that it most certainly can occur. Take these words of advice as a precaution for the ‘just in case’.
Keep in mind that when you are in a relationship, you definitely should consider you and your significant other as a unit. You are a unit. Don’t be blind to that fact, but there must be a healthy balance in a ‘we’, a ‘you’, and a ‘him’ for that unit to function at it’s best. Here are a few ways to make sure you all are fostering that healthy balance within your relationship.
For a healthy ‘We’:
- Spend quality time together. You can’t build a solid foundation without getting to know each other. You should learn something new about your significant other daily. You can never know too much in my eyes.
- Make friends who are also in a relationship. It’s always easier to make an accompanied journey than it is to make a solo journey. Having other friends that are in a relationship gives you many things–a couple to look up to, a couple to possibly teach, a couple to double-date with–just make sure you NEVER COMPARE your relationship to theirs. That’s a definite ‘no-no‘.
- Find a ‘relationship idol’. You guys know I’m all about finding mentors and people you can look up to. I don’t think it’s any different in a relationship. I believe finding a couple to look up to (possibly your grandparents or parents) is a good way to give yourselves something to work towards. Goals are always good.
- Show each other off. Sure, it’s annoying if you overdo it, but it’s healthy for the both of you to show each other off a little. It let’s your honey, as well as others, know that you’re proud to have that person by your side. I never thought I’d be one to say this, but I totally support it. When I was single, it used to irritate me seeing other couples bask in their happiness, but I’m not too good to admit I was just jealous.
- Communicate with each other. THIS IS SO IMPORTANT. You have to promise each other that you’ll be honest with each other about everything. It’s the best policy and it’s the only way things that are broken can be fixed and that will keep you two growing daily.
- Have separate friends. Your friends in a relationship are great to have, but also have friends that you can spend time with away from your honey. It’s important not to smother each other. The worst feeling (if the relationship doesn’t make it) is not having friends to gain comfort in because you neglected them during the time you were in a relationship.
- Spend quality time with yourself. Remember, you have to know who YOU are before other people can know who you are. As important as it is to spend time with your other half, it’s even more important to spend time with you.
- “You rock, don’t ever change.” We are all familiar with this cliché. It’s so important to remember this. DON’T CHANGE YOURSELF FOR A RELATIONSHIP–EVER! Don’t confuse the word change with develop. It’s always okay to grow and develop in a relationship, but you shouldn’t actually change for someone. If they can’t accept you for who you are, they’re not for you.
- Keep up with yourself. Make sure that you are keeping up with your outer appearance! I’ve heard women who get in a relationship say, “I don’t have to look good for anybody; I got a man.”–WRONG! Having a significant other is all the more reason to stay as jazzy and hot as possible. Face it, no man wants something nobody else does. Give him something to brag about!
- Don’t become a ‘couch potato’. This goes hand in hand with the last bullet. If you met your significant other while you were out and about, it’s obvious thats something they liked and noticed about you. Spend quality time with them, but don’t always suggest laying in and laying up. Go out and do the same things you used to. For example, my boyfriend knows I write. I don’t always want to write in the house so I’ll go out for a while and write elsewhere. Don’t neglect the things you’re used to doing. If they’re healthy for you and you enjoy them, your significant other should support your doing it.