Your 12-step program to a better, healthier relationship.
What's your New Year's resolution for 2012? To exercise more? To be more productive? We bet "a more honest and open relationship" isn't on many of your lists. That's because tons of people put their relationships on autopilot, hoping the kinks will just work themselves out — and then they argue each and every day, and end up resenting each other. The best way to have a happy relationship is to keep working on it, so even if you're not currently in a relationship rut, follow these 12 tips from our staff and you'll keep being happy.
1. Say "please" and "thank you." This shows your partner you appreciate them and keeps you from taking each other for granted.
2. Grab your partner's butt every day (or at least every other day).
3. Kiss every morning!
4. Say "good morning" every morning.
6. Spend at least one night a week with your significant other and family/friends, i.e. don't hole up all by yourselves.
7. Use baby talk/pet names very sparingly. If you overuse these, you could damage your relationship since you won't be able to relate to each other seriously.
8. DO THE DISHES. Set up some type of system for who does them when.
9. Practice listening.
10. Practice honesty, even when it's uncomfortable.
11. If you and your partner are indecisive about where to eat or what movie to watch, play the "5-3-1" game. One person names five choices, the other vetoes two of them, and then the first person eliminates the remaining two. Ta-da, no more "Where you do want to eat?" "I don't care, what do you want to do?" (From 8 Relationship Tricks Happy Couples Use)
12. If you live together, make sure you each still have your own private space where you can retreat to work, think, or partake in bizarre grooming rituals that the other person wouldn't want to see.
What are your "happy couple" tips?