I was chatting with the gorgeous Danny Smith online about relationships the other day, so we thought we’d talk about it on his drive time radio show on Radio Verulam.
Missed us? You can listen in here (5.30-6pm).
Now I’ve talked about relationships LOADS at times on this blog. But I was thinking, what are the Top 3 tips for finding and keeping a relationship? Here is what I came up with:
1) Love Yourself And Be Clear On What You Deserve
Oh I know it’s cliched. But you need to know why you are wonderful. If you don’t, how will you make sure people treat you right?
There are lots of gorgeous cakes in the bakery – but why are you the perfect treat for your next partner?
I’d like you to write down a couple of sheets of A4 with SPECIFIC reasons why you are great. Look at what you are like physically, socially, your family, your job, your financial situation, what you know about and your spiritual beliefs. They are all a unique combination that makes you the ONLY you.
Look around you and realise that in the real world, it’s not so easy to find someone to settle down with sometimes. Especially to find someone just like you.
I sat down with one of my very ‘hot’ (someone else’s words!) and very clever member of my team this afternoon. She could only come up with a few reasons why she was wonderful. It took me only a few minutes to write 4 times the number she had written, and I know that there are more.
You need to love yourself so much that you won’t compromise. Be OK in your own company. Be OK on your own.
Take care of yourself. What would you like to improve, or learn, or spend time on? Not so that you can get a partner, but so that you can feel even better about yourself.
Be clear on what you want or need from a partner. I’m not talking about ridiculous long lists, I’m talking about the important things like: affection, security, fun, sense of humour, loyalty. What do you deserve? What will make you unhappy if you compromise on it?
2) Be Yourself
However, being too available doesn’t make you appear valuable either. So don’t chase people desperately and behave pathetically (your friends will be able to tell you if you are over doing it). If you are looking for a long term relationship, behave like it; i.e. don’t give up the goods too soon (I know it’s 2014, but things don’t change that much!). Keep your dignity and remember you are valuable; expect people to treat you as though you are.
Be careful of using persona’s to get someone – you won’t be able to keep up the charade, so there is no point.
Be careful of using persona’s to push people away – you might miss out on someone lovely because you are pretending to be cool!
Basically treat someone just as you would like to be treated; honestly, spontaneously, kindly, thoughtfully and caringly. Don’t play power games or stalk them!
3) Behave As Though You Are Secure
We all get our anxious moments, or the moments when we want to panic and push people away. But if you become more aware of your emotions, you can learn to control them and instead behave in a secure way.
Say how you feel and speak up before you get angry and throw a fit. This stops you from being a high maintenance drama queen who threatens things in the heat of the moment.
Stand up for yourself and be clear on behaviour that is inappropriate. If you keep quiet when someone does something you don’t like, it might be a one off. But what if they take it as a sign that they can mistreat you? If they are a decent human being they will be mortified that they hurt you.
I’ve recently read a book by Dr Amir Levine called ‘Attached’, which I really recommend. It describes 3 relationship styles: Anxious (clingy, texts lots), Avoidant (mixed messages, pushes people away when they get close) and Secure (expects the best, and is happy expressing how they feel). I really recommend anyone about to start a relationship reads it, so that they can recognise the different styles and anyone struggling a little in a relationship reads it for tips on how to deal with different styles!
I wrote some tips on this post on how to express ourselves more clearly, and explain our feelings rather than cause a full blown argument. I also wrote my top 10 favourite books for when we are overwhelmed or stressed, which might help you to become more secure.
So what do you think to my tips? I ignored the obvious one ‘wear deodorant’! But I assumed that you guys probably knew that?