Dating in your 20s is hard. There’s always this cliche (way too perfect) vision we have in our minds- from the Disney princess movies we grew up watching, to the never ending rom-coms where it always works out in the end.
When it comes down to it, if we’re being honest, we’re all chasing our happily ever after, we’re ingrained from day 1 that there’s prince charming out there, and it will all be perfect and easy. But when it comes down to it, it’s never easy, and there’s not a rulebook how to have a perfect relationship. So here’s how I think you can make yours (more) perfect, how you can make it into your daily routine, and my two cents on why I’m continually choosing my relationship (Sorry to put you on blast, Danny!)
The little things matter. Like them pouring you a cup of coffee when they pour theirs. Small acts of kindness, like this show more. I think people can feel unappreciated or unattended to, and take advantage of each other’s presence- especially after the “honeymoon stage” is over. This proves to them that you are thinking about them while you are thinking about yourself, which sets the tone for being selfless and keeping each other’s best interest at heart.
Use manners. I know sometimes (hi, me!!) are guilty of not doing this, but you should never be too comfortable to say please and thank you. Your tone and wording depicts how your messages are received. Say out loud, “get me a glass of water,” did that sound good? Now try saying, “Can you please get me a glass of water?” Sounds so different, and will make them more willing to want to do things for you, if they’re feeling appreciated and respected.
Take XOXO literally. It sounds weird, but makes total sense. I know after a long day if I get a kiss, it’s great. But if I get a hug, a real all encompassing, hug that it makes me feel better, with a kiss on top. A simple arm around each other while watching TV, a hand hold in the car, even a butt squeeze while walking by. It all plays such a major part in feeling wanted and like your partner is attracted to you.
Send love notes. Whether this be as simple as a random “I love you” text, a post it note in their lunch saying “have a good day!” When relationships fall into a routine, I feel that’s where everything negative starts. Doing this- out of the blue- creates a distraction from the day, letting your mind go to them in a positive manner instead of your typical daily work environment.
Don’t sit on your phone. This doesn’t mean don’t go on IG, text, or seclude yourself from society. But we all have seen those couples who go to dinner, or meet for happy hour, and one is on their phone majority of the time. Does the other look happy? No. They look miserable, probably thinking “why am I even here?” It lets you connect in the moment. Fully embrace and take in each other.
Find things you both enjoy. I know we both love eating (LOLing at my total fatty self). So when things get tough, when they get hard, I know I can send a recipe to try and make, or bring up a new place to eat to try, and that we have built that common ground on. It’s an easy subject to talk about, “did you see that new place that popped up around the corner? Let’s go try it!” Or shoot him a delicious looking recipe with “Dinner plans?” It’s fun and flirty, and if it gets really hard, it’s easy to take a breath and eat your food, and not to mention, have that common ground.
Don’t let things build up. I know this is something that has to be constantly fought over inside my head. Not to be nagging, or like you critique everything they do. But it’s so much better to open the door to, “I really don’t like when you do….because….” instead of them continually doing it, building up frustration, and then eventually you explode (after all you’re only human) and then it turns into a way bigger deal than it needed to be.
If you have anything you do that you know helps our relationship! I’d love to hear, let me know! Or maybe if you try doing one of these things, and it totally works! I’d love to hear that as well.
~ XOXO, Amanda