As my husband and I celebrated our 20th anniversary, it was a momentous occasion filled with reflection and gratitude. Looking back, I vividly remember the younger versions of ourselves, hungry for adventure and seeing each other as perfect partners in crime. Fast forward to today, and it’s astonishing to realize just how much we’ve transformed over these two decades. We’ve changed our hairstyles, dabbled in new hobbies, developed new interests, shifted professions, and even lived in four different countries. Along this journey, we’ve evolved into more conscious, international, awakened souls.
With over 20 years of experience in this remarkable partnership, I’m not only celebrating our own love story but also striving to share insights to help you maintain a wonderful love relationship. I’ve dedicated myself to guiding others in cultivating healthy love relationships, and I’m excited to share my wisdom with you.
So, imagine you’ve found that wonderful partner – how can you keep your relationship adventurous, intriguing, and sweet throughout the years?
In the course of a long-term partnership, in the ebb and flow of love´s sea, there are bound to be ups and downs, perhaps even a few metaphorical tsunamis. However, a strong, conscious love relationship can thrive in the face of these challenges, and love can deepen as a result.
“Life is nothing but a dream, and if we are artists, then we can create our life with Love, and our dream becomes a masterpiece of art. – Miguel Ruiz “
As I embark on creating my first couple retreat, having previously organized personalized retreats for women and various group and one-on-one retreats, I want to share with you my 6 gems for maintaining a healthy relationship.
- Me-Time, Space, and Respect
In the hustle and bustle of daily life, it’s easy to become entangled in work, family, and responsibilities. One crucial lesson we’ve learned is the importance of carving out “me-time.” Taking time for ourselves allows us to recharge, pursue our passions, and maintain a healthy sense of self. It’s not selfish; it’s self-care. When we care for ourselves, we become better equipped to care for each other.
It doesn’t matter what form “me-time” takes, as long as it uplifts and energizes you. For me, it’s daily meditations, playing musical instruments, and enjoying hikes or swims. My husband, on the other hand, loves his daily runs, while our son enjoys a daily hour of gaming and playing football. Everyone should be free to have hobbies that rejuvenate and inspire them. Keeping space and time for yourself is essential, as true love allows for freedom.
When you infringe upon your partner’s freedom, you inadvertently limit your own freedom, as you must constantly oversee their actions. True love is about not giving up your personal freedom. Respect your partner’s boundaries, as they are unique individuals separate from yourself.
A healthy and happy relationship requires two individuals with their own identities, tastes, talents, gifts, interests, and perspectives. Don’t attempt to change your partner; real love means loving them as they are and accepting their uniqueness. Embrace your partner for who they are, just as one flower never asks another to change its color or location in the sunlight. Without respect and understanding for each other’s individuality, doubt and judgment can creep in, and your independence may be eroded. In a conscious, healthy relationship, respect and freedom are paramount. Love is about supporting and guiding each other toward your best, unique selves.
- Understanding the Power of Teamwork
In a lasting marriage, it’s crucial to recognize that you are a team. This realization isn’t exclusive to couples; it applies to families as well. To create a conscious and harmonious family environment, everyone must contribute to making it a safe, supportive place.
Being a team means working together toward common goals, offering support during challenging times, and celebrating each other’s successes. It’s about fostering unity, cooperation, and making everyone feel valued and understood.
Recognizing each other as a strong, conscious team brings strength. Communicate with transparency and discuss the importance of trust and truthfulness. Building and maintaining trust and empowerment is crucial. Show genuine interest, listen, and avoid making assumptions. Each person on the team is an individual with unique gifts, and when everyone’s contributions are appreciated, everyone benefits. Open, honest dialogues and empathetic listening create a strong team. Setting and respecting each other’s boundaries is vital, as is showing affection and appreciation through small acts of kindness.
While “me-time” is important, so is “we-time.” Family time, or “family team time,” as we call it, involves coming together to create memories, solve problems, and support one another. Whether it’s a weekend getaway, an adventure holiday, or a simple family game night, these moments strengthen bonds and reinforce the importance of family unity.
A family should serve as a safe haven where each member can be their true selves, find comfort, encouragement, and love. It’s a place where everyone is empowered to be the best version of themselves. As parents, it’s our duty to create this nurturing environment where our children can flourish.
Respect your partner’s equal say in the relationship, as you are a team. If one team member is unhappy, the whole team is affected. Promote transparency; if you have feelings for someone else or unusual sexual fantasies, share them openly. Nothing should be taboo with your partner. To truly value each other, see everyone as equally important. This is the path to a strong team, where you want the best for each other.
While it’s important to create a supportive environment, parents should be cautious not to burden their children with responsibilities beyond their years. Children should be allowed to grow and develop at their own pace, free from the weight of their parents’ expectations.
Foster a harmonious atmosphere where everyone can thrive in their roles within the family.
- Keeping Romance Alive
Romance isn’t just a fleeting emotion; it’s a practice that requires time and effort. We’ve discovered that setting aside time for romantic gestures, whether it’s a surprise date night, heartfelt love messages, cuddling by candlelight, or an adventure in the great outdoors, keeps the spark alive in our relationship.
Romance isn’t something exclusive to the early stages of a relationship; it’s a continuous commitment. Even during the demanding years of raising children, it’s essential to nurture affection and set aside quality time for each other.
While sexuality can play a role in a relationship, it’s not a priority for everyone. The key is to communicate openly with your partner and align your desires. During times when taking care of young children dominates your life, it’s easy to feel disconnected and non-romantic. However, it’s crucial to find ways to keep the flame alive.
- Loving and Honest Communication
Effective communication is the backbone of a healthy relationship. Over the years, we’ve learned that transparent conversations, even when challenging, build trust and understanding. We’ve cultivated an environment where we can openly discuss our thoughts, feelings, and concerns, always knowing that we’re on the same team.
In conscious communication, you share your perspective, how it makes you feel, and engage in dialogue to learn and grow together. Let go of the need to win arguments, be right, or prove a point. Focus instead on understanding and listening. Maintaining your connection is more valuable than inflating your ego by outsmarting your partner. Prioritize understanding each other’s experiences over who is right or wrong.
Love is about freedom, supporting, and guiding each other toward becoming the best versions of yourselves.
- Shared Values, Morals, and Guidelines
Having shared values, morals, and guidelines acts as a compass guiding us through life’s challenges. We’ve discovered that aligning our core beliefs is instrumental in making important decisions and navigating life’s twists and turns. These shared principles provide a strong foundation for our relationship.
It may require effort and discussions to align values and morals. I remember times when my husband and I had to work through differences in our approaches to certain rules because they clashed with our individual beliefs. I made it clear that I wouldn’t settle for a partner who didn’t respect my values and morals. We both needed to adapt and find common ground. This journey involved some arguments and hard work. I distinctly recall a situation early in our relationship when we faced a breaking point, and we chose love and understanding. The decision to stay together resulted from our deep love, excitement, and the adventure we shared. While it wasn’t easy in the beginning, there came a point where it became effortless.
The key takeaway is that, at some point, understanding, respect, and a choice to be together or part ways must occur. The important aspect is respecting each other’s values, morals, and boundaries.
- Keeping Things Interesting
Routines can sometimes dull the excitement in a long-term relationship. To counter this, we’ve embraced the idea of keeping things interesting. We surprise each other with spontaneous adventures, explore new hobbies together, and continually challenge ourselves to grow and evolve. This sense of adventure has breathed fresh life into our relationship.
Our journey of 20 years has taught us that love is not static; it’s an ever-evolving experience. These lessons have enriched our lives and deepened our connection. As we look forward to the next 20 years, we’re excited about the prospects of learning, growing, and cherishing each moment together. While we faced challenges when balancing our individual lives and the responsibilities of raising a child, we realized the need to fall in love with our new roles and adapt to the changing dynamics. Letting go of routines that no longer worked was essential to making our family thrive.
As we celebrate this remarkable milestone, I encourage you to reflect on your own journey and the lessons that have shaped your relationships. Love is a beautiful journey, and every lesson learned is a stepping stone toward a brighter future.
MORE? – Join us on a couple retreat – your enriching journey designed to deepen the bond with your life partner, fostering love, understanding, and shared aspirations. Your Connecting Couple Retreat awaits—an opportunity to create lasting memories and fortify the foundation of your relationship.