Platonic friendships with the opposite sex have their benefits:
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Our own partner preferences may not be fully understood by us.
People may not be communicating well about what they want in their partners or may have a lack of awareness, or even a myopic view of their life. Experiencing it for themselves is a better bet to find out what works.
The dreamy idols that make up our early stages of attractions, especially at a young age, do not translate into someone one can spend the entire life with, where mundane activities like picking up groceries and taking care of the kids take precedence over being handsome or inspiring.
... that you know are doomed. We should not be pursuing every relationship that comes our way, but only those relationships that have the potential to work.
... when you’re in a relationship. Think about those four horsemen of the relationships apocalypse: criticism, defensiveness, contempt and stonewalling and how often do you exhibit any of them.
Try to observe your actions and strive to understand the reasons behind them.
It helps to view your relationship as a “work of art” that you two are co-creating together, in real-time.
The work-of-art mindset can help counter that pessimistic self-narrative. Instead, you get to stop thinking about yourself and what you’re gaining or losing in your relationship, and you get to start thinking about what you have to offer.
Good relationships take commitment and effort.
The challenge for couples is cultivating a mature and trusting love that is the key to a lasting relationship.
In our most committed relationship, we feel a combination of two or three different forms of love. Understanding what forms of love your partner appreciates can help your relationship.
Romantic and passionate love can fade over time and mature into a committed love.
Couples can rekindle the sparks of early courtship simply by doing something novel together. Studies show that partners who regularly share new experiences report greater boosts in marital happiness.
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