girl with rose petals

It’s Valentine’s Day!  Although I’m not a fan of this holiday, I know many of you are patiently awaiting your flower delivery and looking forward to a romantic evening.  While this is the day to “dress up” your love, take a few minutes to peel back those rose petals and make sure you have planted seeds to make your relationship LAST.

L – Let yourself be vulnerable. 
I had a really tough time with this one.  It’s so easy to show the shiny and pretty parts of yourself.  But exposing your insecurities, fears and deepest emotions is the one of the hardest things to do.  I wanted to keep this part of me hidden for fear of being judged and criticized.  What if he leaves when he sees the real me?  While it’s ok to stay a bit guarded until you have established a certain level of trust, there comes a point in a relationship when keeping a wall up does more harm than good.  As I began to love myself more, I realized that I was enough just as I was.  I didn’t have to hide any parts of myself out of shame or fear of rejection.  And if he didn’t love me—all of me—that was ok.  I would find someone who did.  The more I stepped into my authentic self, the stronger my relationship became.  I stopped worrying about the uncertainty of it all and focused on what was in front of me.  I took a deep breath and fell…and he was there to catch me.  I embraced vulnerability and we experienced a deeper connection than I could have ever imagined.

A – Always speak from your heart.
Words are the ultimate weapon.  They can kiss you like soft lips or they can cut you like a knife.  And I happen to have a very sharp tongue.  While there certainly have been times when I wanted to cut, I came to realize that it was never worth it.  It’s so easy to say things you don’t mean in the heat of the moment.  Or maybe you meant to say it, but it came out wrong.  Either way, once it’s out there, you can’t take it back.   So before I speak, I take a deep breath and think.  I make sure what I am about to say is going to move the conversation forward and not pull the pin out of the grenade, leaving a mess that could take years to repair—if it can be repaired at all.

(Related Post:  The Difference Between Anger & Hurt)

S – See each other through God’s eyes.
When you are upset, it’s very easy to see your partner as the enemy.  But when you look at them through God’s eyes, you will see love.  You will see the best in them and your anger will vanish.  (Warning: the first few times you try this, you will still see through your eyes, because you are probably pissed and don’t really want to involve God.  But once you are ready to receive it, I promise it will work:)

T – There is no other relationship like yours—make it your own.
I’m always hearing about what a man should do, what a woman should do and how people in relationships should act.  I remember my mother telling me how I wouldn’t be doing my girls trips anymore once I got married.  Why not, because married women shouldn’t travel with anyone other than their husbands?  One of the fastest ways to ruin a relationship is trying to live up to expectations set by those outside of it.  Set your own rules and do what works best for you and your relationship.  And yes, I still take those trips.

Got any relationship advice you would like to share?

3 comments on “Making Your Relationship Last”

  1. Great points here….I’ve been married for 38 years now. What got us this far? Patience, kindness to each other, tolerance, laughter…one of the biggest and best way to keep connected to each other, Meet each day together as if your last…make sure you say, I love you, constantly!

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