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The power of positive thinking: putting some ‘spring’ into your relationship

Tags: power of positive thinking, spring in your relationship, getting on better, positive relationships,
Featured in Microsite: Men's microsite

The new season is finally here, and as you get ready to clear out the wardrobe, dust round the skirting boards, and look towards the uplifting summer months ahead, why not take some time to consider how you might put some ‘spring’ into your relationship too?

Last winter was stressful for many families. Growing unemployment rates, widespread benefit cuts, and the (albeit expected) stress of Christmas have taken their toll on more than just bank balances – they’re affecting relationships too.

Money worries can cause couples to stop communicating and let’s face it, when all you can see are bills on the horizon, the future can look pretty bleak.

But if your relationship is getting you down, there are some simple techniques you can use to help you view things in a more positive light, whatever the cause of the problem. And by focussing on the good things instead of the bad, both you and your partner are more likely to feel happy in your relationship. Here’s why.

When people feel positive emotions they feel closer and more connected to others around them. If someone is thinking positively they are more likely to make a favourable judgement on someone than a negative one.

For example, if a person in a negative frame of mind asks their partner to pick up some groceries on the way home from work but they forget something on the list, that person may get annoyed that their partner was forgetful and start an argument. However, someone with a positive outlook would have a different reaction – they’d probably thank their partner for making the effort to go to the supermarket after a long day at work and accept the item was forgotten due to tiredness rather than inconsiderateness.

But this is just one small result of taking a positive outlook. Thinking favourably about your partner’s actions will not only reduce arguments, it’ll help you like them more. People that like other people tend to be more sociable and willing to help, which will in turn make other people think favourably about them. This is the start of a positive cycle that can strengthen relationships…



And it doesn’t even take input from your partner. By criticising less and paying more compliments you can help make positive changes to your relationship on your own. Often we’re nicer to people who serve us in shops than the people living in our own home; recognise the good things your partner does and thank them for them.

Talking about your partner’s good points will make you value them more. And all that praise will help put them in a positive frame of mind, meaning they’re more likely to think warmly of your relationship too. So although it may seem un-natural at first, next time you think your partner’s brilliant at something, even if it’s just the DIY, tell them.

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  • User-anonymous India Flag

    I said this on the other page too. Try surprising your girlfriend/boyfriend with a nice present. <3 Or take them out to dinner, or on a vacation.

    Fri 22, Aug 2014 at 8:08pm
  • User-anonymous Anonymous Flag

    You could try giving him OTT praise whenever he does even the tiniest thing for you like opening the door or putting fuel in the car. A bit like training a dog, really, just using positive reinforcements. What does he consider a treat? Something edible or a hug? It is not necessarily easy, especially on those certain times of the year when your job is really demanding and you are tired. If you cannot even think about giving him a "reward" at those times, it might be best to keep yourselves fairly separate if you can do this without being unfriendly. It does work well if you can persevere, so good luck with that. Let us know how you get on.

    Tue 18, Feb 2014 at 5:26pm
  • User-anonymous Anonymous Flag

    My partner is a naturally selfish person (he admits this himself). He'll often do things without thinking of me I.e. make some lunch for himself but not even consider asking me let alone making me any. I have a job which is very demanding at certain times of the year but he never thinks to make a meal for me for when I get home or run the bath. He says he is just not romantic and I shouldn't try to change him. I've told him he should change for his own sake and not mine! How can I encourage him to be more thoughtful and considerate?

    Tue 18, Feb 2014 at 3:19pm