Whether you’re dating, engaged or married, there are certain behaviours and habits that are counterproductive to a healthy relationship. Men and women who know the value of a mutually fulfilling and satisfying relationship are careful to avoid practices that threaten their love, and they take deliberate steps to break those habits where they have already been formed. Here are 7 harmful habits your relationship doesn’t need:
1. Comparing your partner to others: What so and so did for her husband, and what so and so bought for his wife, should not become a yardstick in your relationship. Instead, focus on being the best you can be to each other. Don’t demoralise your partner with comparisons.
2. Not keeping yourself up: When you’ve been with someone for a long time, there’s a tendency to get so used to them that you no longer take as much care with your appearance and manners as you used to. I’m not going to tell you whether or not to fart in front of your partner. Just bear in mind that sexual attraction thrives on a healthy mystique. Don’t let yourself go.
3. Discussing everything about your relationship with friends: While you may not subscribe to “every little thing that we do, should be between me and you” revealing uncomplimentary things about your partner to your friends, or discussing your bedroom activities, undermines your intimacy and bond. If something bothers you, talk to him instead of talking about him.
4. Being stingy with affection: If your partner has to beg for affection, or they only hear “I love you too” then you’re doing something wrong. Don’t wait for them to say it before you say it. If they’re into hugs and cuddles, or they simply love having you around or doing things with you, then you don’t need to be reminded. Shower affection generously.
5. Zero appreciation: The fact that you have been together for a long time does not mean you should stop appreciating the things they do. You may think it’s their duty (or your right) but even if that’s the agreement, don’t take the things they do for granted. Express your gratitude.
6. Caring too much about being right: Listening not to understand but to reply, insisting on making a point regardless of hurt feelings, refusing to apologise because you know they were wrong and not you…these are destructive practices that often stem from a lack of confidence. Not every time try to “win” the argument. Sometimes, chill. In a relationship, being right is not as important as we often think. Other things matter more.
7. Putting him/her last on your list: This is the bad habit I promised to drop in 2016. There’s so much to do in a day that you really don’t have time to spare for just being with your partner. Big mistake. Set a minimum number of hours to spend together each week and prioritise that quality time. It’s easier than growing apart and navigating divorce proceedings, I promise.