A new relationship often gives us a lot of positive energy. You feel optimistic about the future, and driven to take action to make your loved one feel happy and safe. You’re thrilled by the possibilities that your relationship holds. You’re eager to respond positively to challenges and setbacks. Over time, though, negativity can enter even the most loving relationship.
How can you protect yourself from getting emotionally affected by the stress of daily living, and stay cheerful and optimistic in the face of relationship problems? This article will give you 10 simple ways to be positive in a relationship.
1. Be rational about the events in your life.
Many people mistakenly believe that optimism is the opposite of rationality, or being realistic. In fact, when we analyze events rationally, we often realize that we’re giving too much importance to minor setbacks. In addition, we could also be minimizing the importance of positive events.
Take the time to think about how you perceive the events in your life. You may be surprised by how much unnecessary fear and distress are affecting your relationship. Allowing yourself to reflect on the reality of your situation will help you envision positive outcomes and focus your energy on working towards them.
2. Believe in the best of your partner.
Long-standing issues often arise in relationships as people try to adjust to one another. Your partner may have habits that you dislike, or responses to certain situations that you find unhelpful. If you consciously decide to analyze these issues in the most sympathetic and loving way possible, it will surely bring more positivity into your relationship.
For example, if you feel personally rejected when your partner requests more free time to himself or herself, you may realize that it’s normal. It’s not a sign that they want to pull away from you, or that they’re angry with you. Reinterpreting the experience in this way will reduce your anxiety as well as give your partner more freedom to pursue their individual interests.
3. Believe in the best of yourself.
If you have difficulty believing the best of your partner, this is sometimes because you’re too focused on being negative about yourself. If you see yourself as inferior or unworthy, it’s more likely that you’ll experience your partner’s neutral (or even positive) comments as negative. Remember that you’re trying your best, and you don’t need to compare yourself to anyone else. Be patient with yourself. Trust that you’re good for your partner, and that they chose to be with you because they see many positive attributes in you.
Also read: 16 Wise Ways to be a Better Person in a Relationship
4. Practice regular self-care.
Positive thoughts and emotions must be reinforced by behavior. Taking care of yourself means having a healthy diet, regular exercise, and sleep – but it also means allowing yourself to seek healthy pleasure. Too often, we associate pleasure with behaviors that aren’t good for us, such as bingeing on Netflix or chocolate ice cream (or both). Indulging in these things excessively has bad results on our health and may give us a feeling of guilt afterward.
Instead, make an effort to do activities that include your partner, such as going on a nature walk, cooking delicious and nutritious meals together, or trying a new sport. Involving your partner in your self-care routine will add a positive aspect to your relationship and make it more likely that you’ll stick with it.
Also read: How to Love Yourself in a Relationship: 15 Ways to Practice Self-Love
5. Allow yourself to make mistakes.
Making mistakes from time to time is perfectly understandable. If you can admit it when you’re wrong, you don’t have to spend time and energy always trying to prove that your actions were right. You will also be able to put your partner’s feelings above your own self-interest, and maintain honesty and humility in your relationship.
6. Revisit happy memories.
When you’re facing challenges in your relationship, looking back on positive moments in the past will give you a clear reminder of the reasons why you love your partner, and why your relationship is worth the effort. Reading the love letters (or your online chats), and looking at your photos will definitely put a smile on your face.
Also read: Top 8 Secrets To Be Happy in a Relationship
7. Take time to recharge.
Having regular “alone time” enables you to reflect deeply on things that are important to you. Profound insights are developed in solitude, when you can connect with yourself and process your emotions. If you’re used to being with your partner for most of your free time, this can be an uncomfortable adjustment for both of you – but you’ll come back from these sessions renewed, and you’ll find it much easier to be positive.
8. Consult a professional.
If it seems like your efforts just aren’t enough to bring positivity into your relationship, you may need to see a psychologist or psychiatrist to address clinical issues that are impacting your mood. In these cases, struggling to be positive without professional help may only leave you frustrated and discouraged. It’s completely normal in our stressful, hectic environment to seek out professional help for your mental health.
9. Recognize your patterns.
Thought and emotion patterns form over time. They often become automatic, leaving no time to consider your reaction carefully. Once they are formed, your mind applies them to yourself, your environment (including your partner), and your future. For example, you might form a pattern of overgeneralizing from one specific event, saying, “You always come home late!” even though it isn’t true.
It can be very difficult to become aware of these thought patterns, because they seem like they are accurate and based on reality. However, stopping these negative thought patterns is totally worth it. It will allow positivity to truly take root in your consciousness, and allow you to respond to your partner with understanding instead of a knee-jerk emotional response.
10. Set goals.
Every relationship has its own unique goals, and keeping these in mind will help you look to the future. Defining what you want to achieve together helps you align your daily activities with your goals, and makes it easier to be positive when you experience hard times. Envision your dreams, and know it’s possible to turn them into reality.
Positivity in a relationship starts from within.
Being positive doesn’t mean that you are never sad, or that you ignore the issues in your relationship. Positivity is not misplaced optimism, or a denial of reality. Rather, positivity is the inevitable result of clear thinking and self-acceptance, and an indication of a calm, deep inner peace.
When you’re taking charge of your physical health by giving your body the nourishment, stimulation, and rest that it requires, the health of your mind will follow. It’s easy to be positive when you’re confident that your mind and body can withstand the stress and challenges of life.
Being positive frees you from the anxiety and worry that comes from focusing on negative experiences and events. Being able to give positive words of affirmation and reinforce them with actions will make your partner feel appreciated and valued. These benefits have a far-reaching impact on your relationship, where you can be a more reliable, reassuring partner for the one you love.
Also read: How to be Hopeful in a Relationship: 12 Tips