BB Hearts: Top 5 Secrets for a Long Relationship

In honor of the Valentine's Day month of February, I am challenging myself to post something to my blog every day until the end of the month! I am going to call it BB Hearts to represent how thankful I am for all my readers that stop by Beauty Banter! Everyone that decides to take time from their day to come to my blog truly has a special place in my heart and you guys are the reason my blog has recently reached its ONE YEAR anniversary with no signs of stopping!

My first post of BB Hearts is going to be something a little different than my typical beauty related one. Most of my posts focus on the (what some may deem) superficial- makeup, hair, nails. All this stuff is so incredibly fun for me to talk about and share with you guys, but I am well aware that there are much more important things in life. In honor of Valentine's day, I wanted to focus on one of those "more important" things- relationships! May will mark the 8th year in my relationship and, although I am no expert and probably never will be, I do feel that I have learned a ton along the way. I mean, realistically, you can't possibly make it 8 years without a lot of learning, changing and growing. So below you will find my top 5 [secrets, tips, ideas..?] I don't know what to call them! Anyways...

1. Communication
       UGH! This one is SO cliche I almost don't want to include it, but it is so incredibly important through and through. One of the reasons my relationship has lasted is because over the years we have gotten better and better, far from perfect, but better at communicating. I'm not talking about the everyday chatter, but more so about communicating to one another during arguments, and during times of tension and stress. When something is bothering you, instead of hold it in and let it stew and grow into resentment, release it and get it off your chest. With a soft approach, it won't come out as a criticism but more so as a concern that you have for the well-being of your relationship. If you didn't care, you wouldn't bother talking about it and trying to fix it right? By sitting down and having a mature and calm conversation about what is going on, both partners are aware of what the other is feeling and the line of communication is open. The goal is to keep your partner from becoming defensive because they feel attacked while simultaneously being honest about your feelings.

2. The little things
       Communication is one of those overarching all-encompassing and all-important concepts, but what about the in-between? I really believe that the little, day to day, things can make or break a relationship. When you get home, you may be tired, cranky and not in the mood to interact with anybody, but a simple "how was your day?" can go SO far. Also thanking your partner for the simplest things like emptying the dishwasher or taking out the trash. When you stop appreciating each other I think tension starts to build and everyone is more on edge. Making that small effort towards the mundane, everyday life stuff keeps the positivity going in the relationship and makes you want to do something for the other person, not feel like you have to.

3. Pick your battles
       There are going to be things that piss you off everyday. Maybe not everyday but a lot, lets be real. Maybe he or she didn't replace the toilet paper roll or put their dishes in the dishwasher. Maybe he left his clothes on the floor of the bedroom or she left her stray hairs all over the bathroom counter. I just realized this is really geared towards couples the live together- but you can generalize right? haha! Anyways, these things are very annoying and can easily escalate into an argument. Instead of ripping your partner a new one because they left crumbs on the counter, approach it in a nice way or just let it go. If it must be addressed, which it sometimes does, ask them nicely to next time make sure the counter is wiped down. You can address it without going into how the person is a complete slob who NEVER cleans up after themself ect. ect. A therapist might call that a "blanket statement." Instead of addressing the one instance of cleaning up the crumbs, your basically calling out a bad personality trait- two totally different things! Anyways, yeah, pick your battles and try not to sweat the small stuff but if something has to be brought up, do it a nice-hey just mentioning it- type of way!

4. Have fun!
      Even after the relationship passes the honeymoon stage where everything is rainbows and butterflies, that doesn't mean you should stop having fun with each other. Continue to go out to dinner, take hikes, go on picnics, go out for drinks, continue to DATE even after the relationship has become very serious. Continue doing the things that you initially loved doing with one another. It's a constant reminder of what you saw in the person in the first place. Going along with this, continue to laugh, cuddle and joke with each other, keep it light and that will maintain the "fun-ness" and keep the relationship going strong.

5. Death Plotting
    If your partner has really been pissing you off lately, create a detailed and intricate plan of how you will kill them. This can be extremely therapeutic and cathartic. I'm kidding I'm kidding! I can't let this get too corny, gotta interject some humor. Ok, back to Dr. Phil...

(the real) 5. Companionship
     At the end of the day, instead of focusing on the trivial aspects of your relationship, consider the fact that this person isn't just your boyfriend, your fiance or your husband (or girlfriend/wife), he is your companion. Sounding corny again! Sorry, but its true! This person is your life companion and that is a relationship that deserves a lot of respect, time and effort. When things get stressful and every little thing is pissing you off and you feel like somethings about to break, take a second and look at the big picture and who this person really is to you in your life. This can help bring both of you back down to earth and get back to enjoying each other's company instead of constantly triggering each other's nerves.

Ok, that was my moment of deep introspection. You may not agree with anything I said and I am certainly far from the authority on relationships, this is just a few things I've gathered over the course my own personal relationship. Have a great night! xoxo

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