Lisa’s Top Ten Rules for a Happy Relationship
Talk about sex more than you talk about money.
Married and cohabiting couples spend more time talking about money than anything else. For couples with children, kids and child related issues are a very close second. Before you know it, you can’t seem to have a conversation about anything else. I’m not saying you have to talk about your sex life. Talk about someone elses if you want to! Couples who talk about sex have more of it and that’s worth talking about!
Focus on shared values more than shared interests.
Contrary to popular belief, shared interests aren’t that important. In fact, having different interests or hobbies can be very good for a relationship. It creates some interest. What really counts are shared values and goals. You are much more likely to live happily ever after with shared values than a shared love of tennis or camping.
Make your relationship a higher priority than your children.
It’s good for children to have two parents who are in love with each other. It’s good for children to learn by watching how to be in a relationship that works. Making your relationship the priority is the only way to guarantee that.
Never fight about something that happened more than a week ago.
Seriously. Never. Holding a grudge and dredging up the past will break
a relationship. Some things are unforgivable. If you find yourself there, take a long look in the mirror and admit your relationship is over. If you intend to stay in a long term relationship, you have to be willing to let everything, and I mean every little or big thing, go.
Obviously it encourages sex. Less obvious though is the big pay off. Skin to skin contact promotes bonding, in a big way. Night after night of skin to skin contact will make a couple closer. It has to. It’s a biological chemical reaction.
Don’t try to problem solve issues during a fight.
I’m not saying don’t fight. Fight if you feel like it. Just don’t try to solve problems, get answers, or make things better when it’s happening. It doesn’t work and tends to make things much worse.
Never stop dating each other.
Show me a couple that’s lost that loving feeling and I’ll show you a couple that quit dating each other long ago. Dating is not something you stop doing after you live together. In fact when you live together you probably should double down on your dating commitment. Dating is not optional.
Spend a weekend away together a minimum of once a quarter.
Even if you don’t have kids you need this time. If you do have kids you need it even more. A romantic get-away-weekend is a time when couples get to experience each other as a couple. It’s a big deal. Sure it takes some planning and some cash, but weekend trips are a relationship saving investment.
Commit to non-sexual touch.
I recently watched an interview of ten couples that have been married for 50 plus years. All of them sat together holding hands. Two people in love naturally touch each other. Nonsexual touch can define two people as a couple more than sex itself.
Tell the truth.
Especially when it’s hard.