Be a power couple not a comfy couple.
When two people have been dating for at least six months, they tend to stop trying so hard and get comfortable. They stop working on themselves and leave themselves out of the relationship because they are either too focused on their significant other or they feel as though they have reached their maximum potential since they have landed their guy. The baggy sweats come out and the cute yoga pants get put away; lets be real.
While it’s critical that you feel you can be yourself around your significant other, you should always try to be your best self. By “best self” I don’t mean, “don’t have bad days and cake yourself in makeup La Perla and cocktail dresses” all the time. While all this is nice once in a while, we are not living in the Upper East Side Gossip Girl-style. By best self, I mean don’t use this person as an emotional punching bag. Don’t lounge in sweats all weekend and don’t stop trying to be better. Always remember you are dating yourself first and wouldn’t you want to date the best person possible?
The best relationships are the ones where couples are constantly pushing each other to be better and motivating each other to achieve their goals: the true power couple. My boyfriend and I are both gym fanatics so days where I feel too lazy to go to the gym, he somehow gets me there and I do the same for him on his lazy days. This may seem pretty insignificant, but it’s a big deal because both of us know how important the gym is to one another.
Sometimes when you are with the wrong partner, they tend to discourage any personal growth. Don’t start thinking this is because they like you the way you are, this is because of their own insecurities of losing you. Chances are you are with Mr. Right Now and not Mr. Right. Mr. Right knows that fulfilling your goals is not going to jeopardize the relationship and that the two of you will be stronger as a couple if you are both achieving your dreams.
1. Do date night.
My boyfriend and I do date night at a semi-fancy restaurant at least once a month. We have been dating for over a year now and he has seen me with glasses and no makeup countless times and I have seen him in basketball shorts and tanks pretty much every day; however, when we go out for date night I get extra dolled up and he gets dressed up. This feels like our first date every time and it’s truly magical and so important.
2. Don’t take each other for granted.
So many couples get comfortable and feel like they can take each other for granted but this is a huge mistake. Of course you should be comfortable around the person you are dating, this is critical for any long-term relationship. But this does not mean you should stop verbally appreciating your significant other. Let them know frequently how happy you are with them and if they washed the dishes or even turned the coffee on for you before they left for work, thank them. Everyone likes to feel appreciated. A simple thank you goes a long way.
Once in a while when I’m at the gym with my boyfriend and he is working out near me, I’ll send him a text saying, “There’s this sexy guy on the treadmill in front of me,” and I’ll see him chuckle and smile. He is not a verbal kind of guy so his way of flirting with me is tickling me or annoying me in the cutest non-annoying way possible. We show our adoration for each other in different ways but we never stop showing it.
4. Don’t criticize.
I took a communication class once and the professor told us that the worst thing a partner can do is to criticize their significant other’s character instead of criticizing the action that has sparked the criticism in the first place.
For example: I was continuing my surgeon expertise by watching Grey’s Anatomy and suddenly basketball comes on. Instead of calling my boyfriend selfish and rude, which he is not, I told that him I was watching Grey’s Anatomy, but since I was not watching intently, I didn’t mind if he wanted to watch basketball; however he should have asked me first.
5. Apologize when wrong.
Don’t draw out this big long fight just because you want to be right. My grandfather always said that it’s better to be kind than to be right and most of the time I think that’s true. If you know you are wrong just apologize and do not apologize by saying “I’m sorry you feel that way.”
Example: After my boyfriend interrupted my surgery education (aka: Grey’s Anatomy) and I told him how I felt, he thought about it and said he was sorry and didn’t realize I was watching. He never insists on watching sports often so I thanked him for his apology and told him not to worry and to keep the basketball on and decided to resume my surgery education at a later time.
6. Be your best version.
If you are constantly working to be the best version of you and truly dating yourself meaning you are in tune with who you are, your goals and your dreams, then subsequently your significant other is getting the best version of you. If you are always growing and improving you will never get comfortable in your life and therefore you will never get comfortable in your relationship. You will always improve and as a result of that, so will your relationship.
7. Be supportive.
If your significant other has to stay late at work or work on the weekend, don’t make them feel bad for it. Understand that their work is important and be encouraging. Maybe even offer to bring them lunch. A king needs more than himself to build a kingdom, so be a queen and support him in building his kingdom, it might be yours too one day and vice versa because we all know a queen is more than capable of building her own kingdom. And if a queen and king combine their kingdoms they can build an empire. So next time he calls and says he has to work late, try to be as understanding as possible and either go do something fun or get ahead with your own work.
8. No ownership.
It is so important to realize that in relationships, you do not own the other person and they do not own you, it’s a full time job from which either can be fired at any time. Keep working hard and never give up or slack off. Keep things fresh and keep things exciting. Follow all of your dreams and passions and encourage your significant other to follow theirs.
If you are lucky enough to find your Mr. Right, work to achieve the power couple relationship by both appreciating each other, pushing each other, and trying to be the best person you can be for each other and for yourself. Be a power couple not a comfy couple.