There are a number of things you can do to start focusing on the positive. This blog explains how they can help your relationship.
It can help to establish a routine of thinking just before you go to sleep and when you wake up of all the things you are grateful for in your life.
Also think about your partner and what you appreciate about them. Send them some love.
These new gratitude practices will help train your brain to look for the good instead of being critical.
You may also like to keep a journal and write down when something your partner does evokes a wave of appreciation. You could even give them the journal as a Thanksgiving present. This is what Darren Hardy said he did in his book “The Compound Effect”.
Set Up A Regular Relationship Review Meeting
Each week, set up a time when you can discuss your relationship. Focus on what has been working well and how to bring about more of that.
You may like to use this time to also plan date nights, day trips or longer travel adventures you can have together. Remember that it is by experiencing things together that you will grow closer. That’s also why having more moments of intimacy adds to your “relationship experience bank”.
Research Backs This Up
Gottman1 found that “for every negative interaction during conflict, a stable and happy marriage has five (or more) positive interactions”.
This article refers to a number of other research studies about relationships2.
Incremental Changes Add Up
Focusing on replacing one bad habit a month with a new positive habit can make huge changes in the long term. They say that it can 3 weeks to a month for a new habit to become a permanent part of our lives.
For example, you might decide to listen to an inspiring audiobook instead of listening to the same old news when you have lunch together. Or you could watch TV for half an hour less each night and go for a walk together instead.
Talking to a counselor about what you need to change in your relationship can also help. It can give you new perspectives and new ideas about how to add back the positive into your relationship.