What’s working in your relationship? What is one positive quality that has sustained the test of time for you and your partner? If you are finding yourself unable to think of even one thing, I assure you- there is more than one thing that is working in your relationship right now. You may not recognize huge things, but allow yourself to consider even the small things (e.g. my partner makes the bed and is clean, we are able to have breakfast without arguing, or we still don’t throw things when we are angry).
Allow yourself, just for this moment, to take off the glasses that may be filtering your world with negativity. This will allow a little more optimism and solution-focused vision to occur.
What to do: Write a list of 5 things that are currently occurring in your relationship, and that you want to continue happen. Then, next to each of those things, write how you are contributing to them. How are you allowing these things to happen and to continue? Share these things with your partner, and be sure to give them appreciation for their amazingness (that is the practice of gratitude).
Now, of all the things you just listed, what is so good about each of them for you? What about those things helps you, is positive for you, or do you appreciate?
Next step: Do more of those things.
Yes, increase the amount of time you spend together at breakfast if that is a time of day when you have good conversation. In other words, the more time and effort you put into the things that are already working for your relationship, the stronger those qualities and healthy times become and the more they happen. Let your relationship grow from what is already working. Build from what you have. And when your partner does something that “works” for you, let them know. Tell them what that means to you and why you appreciate it. Validate them!
Focusing on what is right with your relationship- instead of what is wrong- will contribute to an overall increase in your relationship satisfaction. And remember this: You must sow the seeds in order to reap the harvest.