Love, Self

The Top 5 WORST Habits That Ruin Great Relationships

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how do you mess up a relationship

Great relationships are made and broken in how you treat each other every day. It's the simple things — your attitude, how you deal with conflict, and what your focus is on that will ultimately keep you together or push you apart.

Building a life with a woman means learning how to share your life with her, and how to create a deep and meaningful relationship that allows both of you to grow and evolve as people. But how do you mess up a relationship? Here are five bad habits that create drama and negativity in your relationship.

1. You worry about what other people think. 

Everyone wants and needs different things in their relationships. Don't get caught up in what other people want or what your friends are doing. Concentrate on creating a relationship with your partner that works for the both of you. 

2. You let your ego get in the way.

One of the biggest relationship mistakes is getting caught up in trying to be right in an argument. When you're focusing on proving your partner wrong and getting them to acknowledge that you're right, you lose sight of what you're really trying to do: resolve a problem.

Drop your ego, and instead focus on creating a space where each of you can share your concerns over the issue. Work as a team to find a solution that makes sense for the both of you. 

3. You let the past define you or your partner. 

Past relationships and partners shouldn't be used as a gauge for your current relationship. Negative past experiences aren't proof every relationship you'll ever have will fail. You can learn from your mistakes and make different choices. Your partner can too. Don't use her past against her. Concentrate on your present and future together. 

4. You hold grudges.

Holding onto your upset over a wrong (or perceived wrong) can poison your relationship over time. Grudges build invisible walls between you and your partner.

When you're walking around seething about an old slight, you can't emotionally connect with her, or enjoy true intimacy. The negative emotions you're feeling get into the way. Creating a strong relationship involves learning how to forgive, forget, and let go of grudges

5. You try to change her.

Love your partner for who she is instead of trying to change or "fix" her. When you try to change her, subconsciously you're rejecting her and telling her that she's not good enough for you. Strive to create a relationship full of love, acceptance, and support that inspires the both of you to grow and evolve. 

What can you do instead?

You don't have to let your bad habits ruin your relationship. Learn to recognize when you're doing them and commit to breaking your patterns. Practice P.B.S. (Pause, take a deep Breath, and Smile) whenever you're tempted to bring up the past or hang onto a grudge. By taking a moment before reacting, you can choose a different action, one that is more empowering.

For example, instead of trying to change the things that bother you about her, you can choose to be grateful for the things you love about her. Is she a great parent? A thoughtful gift giver? An imaginative artist?

When you think about the things you appreciate about her and feel grateful for those things, the annoying things seem more insignificant. Keep your relationship strong and healthy by avoiding bad habits and focusing on creating good ones.

This article was originally published at Reprinted with permission from the author.