This article was published on April 22nd, 2020
It’s inevitable that there will come a time in your relationship when you find your partner particularly bothersome. Some call it the ‘seven-year itch,’ for others it’s a daily struggle.
Real, everyday love isn’t the same as the whirlwind romances of the movies. Heck, it isn’t even the same as the initial stages of getting together. It’s easy to become jaded when your long-term relationship clocks up the months and the years because the thrill of the new is gone, and life settles into routine. Change doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re less compatible. Many would argue that you only get to know your partner when you live with them, and that’s when you really build a life together.
So, how do you remain mindful of your partner?
If you’ve ever sat or suffered through a particularly spiritual yoga class, you may find it helpful to reflect on some of the adages of wisdom which routinely get sprinkled throughout a session. Try to be present in the moment. Take a deep breath and remember that nothing is permanent. The only thing you control is how you feel and respond. So, in the wise words of George Michael’s t-shirt, ‘Choose Life.’
Once you’ve centered yourself, try to think about balance. It’s useful in yoga, and beyond. It’s possible to spend too much as well as too little time with each other. Sometimes what you actually need is to make meaningful time – from date night to intimacy. Tiffs can erupt for being too bossy, but on the other end of the spectrum, being indecisive can be fraught with just as much tension. So, be mindful of balance, and how you can bring harmony to the needs of your household.
Negotiation and compromise are also important concepts to explore. It may sound counter-productive, but learning to fight with each other, and learning how to resolve a fight, is what makes a relationship work. If you look at the scenarios when you argue, you’ll probably find that one of you is simply hungry. So, next time an argument starts to brew, add snacks, and you’ll find that more often than not, it helps to deescalate the situation.
No-one is perfect, and that applies to you and your partner equally. So, when their habits and short falls get on your nerves, try to be conscious of your own. Rather than teasing and taunting, try helping and supporting. If your lover is messy, it can be frustrating to always tidy up after them. But you can add humor to any situation. Try piling all their clothes in one particular spot, like Marie Kondo. Or, if your partner is rude, don’t escalate the situation by responding in-kind. Try a different approach, like showering them with affection, to show them that you love them. Kill them with kindness, and then point out why their choice of words matters.
It always helps to remember why you coupled up in the first place, and to consider how you can continue to be there for each other. What are the aspirations, hopes and dreams that you share? Love is about lifting each other up, in good times and bad. It helps to remain mindful. But if you need some space, you can always book yourself into a local yoga class. You might even pick up a few tips to help navigate your next lovers quarrel.