Relationships aren’t always just about love. It takes a lot of hard work, patience, and give and take. This is especially true for couples who have been together for so long. A great relationship, after all, is also strengthened by the small things you do together. Keep the kilig going strong and stay in love with your man every day with these tips.

1. Say “I love you” often.
And by say, we also mean show him how much you love him. Leave post-it notes where he can spot them, prepare him lunch to take to the office, send him merienda at work. These things may seem cheesy but they do wonders in keeping the relationship alive.

2. Do new things together.
Don’t allow for your relationship to go stale by doing the same thing over and over again. Try out a new sport, travel somewhere you haven’t been to, or take a cooking class together—and do this at least once a month. You’ll be surprised that while you learn new things, you also get to discover something better about your man. Taking a break from the routine adds more spark to the relationship Just because you don’t share the same interests and hobbies doesn’t mean you can’t have fun together.

3. Go on dates.
Drop off the kids at your parents’ place, and have that alone time with your hubby. Even a simple candlelit dinner will do the trick. Remember to put on a fancy dress and turn on the charm. There’s nothing like bringing back the old days when he was still courting you.

4. Value your guy.
More often than not, it’s easier to nitpick on his shortcomings than to show him that you appreciate his strengths. Time for a change! Find ways to sincerely appreciate your guy (say, learning to listen to him or showing him that you trust his decisions), and we assure you, you’ll notice the big difference it will make in your relationship!

5. Laugh together.
Seeing the lighter side of things, especially during times when things are rough, helps make the relationship stronger. Remember, though, that there is a difference between making your guy laugh and making him the laughingstock. If he’s the sensitive type, be careful with the jokes you make, so they don’t hurt him in the process.

6. Communicate.
You’ve heard this time and again, but a little reminded won’t hurt:  Communication is essential to keep the love alive. Tell your man how you feel, but don’t be sarcastic or mocking. Ask him how his day went—and if sucked big time, help him release stress by talking to him and comforting him with a hug. Remember that hugs and kisses are forms of communicating, too! So don’t be too stingy when giving them to your guy.

7. Make the big gesture.

Sometimes it helps when you are able to do something of huge value to your boyfriend or husband. (Some examples: taking the first step to patch things up with your mom-in-law or driving his younger sis to school.) Take the first step and you will see that he will also make the time and effort to do the important things for you. Don’t forget, relationships are about give and take, and never about keeping score.

PHOTO: Crazy, Stupid, Love/Warner Bros/ (2011); GIFS: Giphy.com

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