Being in a new relationship is exciting and thrilling. Actually being with your crush, being able to call them your boyfriend or girlfriend, hanging out with them all the time, and knowing they really like you back can make you feel like you’re living in an actual dream sometimes. But underneath all of the happiness and butterfly-in-your-stomach feelings, anxiety is lurking. You worry that you’ll do something to totally eff things up, you get nervous that someone else will come along and steal your bae, and you stress over whether or not you guys are going to make it in the long run. Worrying about your relationship future is totally normal, and is actually a legitimate concern, so once the honeymoon phase begins to die down, it’s time to start focusing on how to make your relationship stronger.
Of course, you’ve heard all of the common advice tropes out there on strengthening your bond with a new significant other: communicate and spill on personal secrets, have sex (or just make out) on a regular basis, spend time with their friends, get to know each other in a lot of different ways. These things are obviously really important in any relationship, but they aren’t the only things you should be thinking about. There are other ways to make your relationship stronger, and some of them are things you might not think about on your own. Check them out, and then relax in the knowledge that you and bae are super close.
1. Fill them in on little details about your day instead of just the big things.
You’re obviously going to tell your partner about the big things that happen during your day, like getting a great grade on a test you studied hard for, getting in a fight with a friend, or a piece of really great gossip you heard. But you probably aren’t going to tell them what time you woke up or what your favorite snack of the day was, because you probably assume they don’t care. Well, as silly as it might sound, telling them little details about your day could actually make your bond stronger. Research has found that discussing the small stuff is a key part of intimacy. You don’t need to give them a minute-by-minute explanation of your day, but throw in some small stuff when you talk.
2. Cuddle more often.
Cuddling is fun, but it’s also really important for a thriving relationship. There’s a lot of research out there that shows a link between cuddly touching and the release of oxytocin, the hormone which makes you feel happy and loved. So, snuggle up when watching a movie – it’s good for your relationship!
3. Sync up your breathing while cuddling.
I once read a study that found that when two people are in love, their breathing and heart rates sync up. I thought it was basically the cutest thing in the world (besides kittens) and remembered it forever. It’s a mostly unconscious thing, but there are a lot of researchers out there who encourage synchronizing your breathing with your partner to feel closer and more intimate. The next time you’re laying together, listen to their breathing and try to sync up yours.
4. Make couple friends.
What are the odds!!! My boyfriend and I sat next to the winner of #Survivor at the Warriors game last night!!! Holy sh*t!!!! I totally fangirled out… asked him if he was on a food reward because he was eating so much lol. I always have dreams of him voting me off the island one day… maybe… just maybe… ??? #dreamsdocometrue #reunited #Survivor #millennialsvsgenx #teamfiggy #teamadam #goldenstatewarriors #dubnation #goteam #datenight #doubledate #thefam #happiness #garlicfriestilidie #bloodvswater?
Double dates aren’t just a corny thing of the past – or at least, they shouldn’t be. Making friends with other couples and doing things with them is a serious way to strengthen your relationship. Research has found that connecting with each other and with friends on a personal level is a good way to feel more ~in love.~
5. Think a lot before automatically getting pissed.
Okay, this is important. The next time your bae does something that makes you angry, try and put yourself in their shoes before you say something to them. For example: if they were supposed to call you at a certain time and forgot, try and imagine the reasons they might have done that before you get mad and upset. Try to think about what they were doing and think, “Well, maybe they really did forget because they had a lot of school work going on.” It’s not always easy, but constantly assuming the worst about your partner is going to hurt your relationship. You have to try to be empathetic and try to understand where they’re coming from rather than just start a fight about it.
Of course, if they always bail on you or forget to call, that’s a different story. But for things that happen once in a while, try to assume the best before hearing their explanation, and then only fight about it if it’s very important to you.
6. Say “thank you” a lot.
Show your bae that you appreciate the things they do for you by saying a simple, “thank you” whenever it’s appropriate. Seriously, that’s it! Studies have shown that showing gratitude releases oxytocin, AKA the love hormone. You should always say “thanks,” and if you haven’t recently, let them know how appreciative you are of their existence.
7. Do something totally new together.
Meet @jaydee_walker Jordan is our adventure specialist. She also enjoys booking #travelwithpurpose trips. Looking for meaningful and fun contact Jordan! . . . . . #travelagent #inspiration #giveback #travel #inspire #dogood #love #yolo #adventure #charity #grouptours #bucketlist #backpackers #fbf #instalove #fotd #nature #ocean
This is a no-brainer, but a lot of couples, especially new couples, ignore it. One serious way to strengthen your bond is to try something totally new together. Don’t do something that’s just new for you, do something that’s new for both of you. Even if it ends up being a fail, learning something new at the same time is a bonding experience. My boyfriend and I have been together for a while, so to keep things interesting, we try to do new things together as often as possible. We recently went to Costa Rica and zip lined together for the first time. It was such a great experience and helped bring us closer. You don’t need to do something that big, but make it a new learning experience.
8. Create your own rituals.
Such a brave man for doing this with me ? total champ! #boyfriend #facemask #girlytime #manly #champion #bestbfever #handsome #6ft5 #girlfriend #bf #gf #beautyqueens #Beautymasks #blue #happy #pyjamas #pjs #feelingpretty #pretty #pamper #suchababe #isleofman #blonde #brunette #relationshipgoals #saturdaynight
You know how you and your family have important yearly traditions, like always opening one Christmas gift at midnight before Christmas Day? Well, you should start to develop some traditions with your significant other, too. Since those can take a long time to form, start with creating rituals. For example: maybe you always spend Saturday night going to see a new movie. Maybe the first Friday of every month is reserved for going out to dinner. It can be anything, just make sure it’s something you do together at a specific time every week or month.
9. Do your own things.
As weird as it sounds, part of strengthening your bond is doing things on your own. Set aside a few nights of the week to be with your friends or to do your own thing at home. Keeping up a healthy balance between them and the rest of your life ensures that you’ll continue to have your own lives, and that’s really important for the well-being of both of you – and your relationship.
10. Get friendly with their family and friends.
One great way to show your S.O. how strong your relationship is is to be kind of close with their family and/or friends. You don’t need to be besties with their sister, but talk to her whenever you see her and develop a friendly relationship. Go out of your way to be nice to their parents. Hang out with their friends sometimes and talk with them instead of just being with your bae. It shows how close you guys are and makes you closer.
11. Be genuinely nice to each other.
Being nice to each other sounds very obvious, but sadly, a lot of couples aren’t that nice to each other. Not surprisingly, studies have shown that relationships that last depend on kindness to work. It’s fine to bicker sometimes, but if you guys are constantly ready to get into a screaming fight, that’s… not good. Talk to each other nicely, be honest with them, communicate instead of yelling, and be supportive.
12. Be touchy feely.
When you wake up in the middle of the night and snuggle back into your girlfriends arms ❤️ #goals #thisplease #needy #cute #girlygaygirl #gayisokay #loveknowsnogender #lovehasnogender #relationshipgoals #beyourself #spendtimetogether #yesplease #femme #kisses #gaygirluk #pride #gaygirl #samelove #loveislove #lipsticklesbian #femmelesbian #lesbianuk #uklesbian #lesbianlife #lesbianlove #les #lgbtq #lgbt #lesbiansofig
Go ahead and hold hands, cuddle in public, and kiss on the mouth multiple times a day – doing so can make your relationship stronger, according to science. It’s intimate and important to be touching each other in a warm way a lot. It will make you feel closer and make your bond stronger.
13. Binge-watch Netflix together.
Remember how I said you and bae should hang with other couples to strengthen your bond? Well, if you don’t have any couple friends, then you officially have permission to binge watch TV together. Recent research shows that binge-watching together and then talking about the show is just as good as socializing together. Sounds good to me! Feeling passionate about something and theorizing together is a good way to become stronger as a couple.
14. Don’t hang out every single day.
You might think that a good way to make your relationship stronger is to see each other as often as possible, but that’s not the case. Studies have found that couples in long-distance relationships are more likely to have a stronger bond than those not in long distance relationships. This is probably because when couples aren’t together every day, they talk more and get more personal. With this logic, it makes sense to only see your bae three times a week rather than seven days a week. You’re more likely to have deeper communication when you’re together 24/7.
15. Tell white lies when necessary.
Lying to your S.O. is obviously not good, but white lies just might help you feel closer – and science backs that up. Lying to protect their feelings can strengthen your bond and make things better. I mean, it makes sense – if they ask you if you think your classmate in math is cute, and you say yes, that’s not going to make things better. But if you say no, if that person means nothing, it keeps you both happy.
16. Make it Facebook official.
It’s often thought that social media use can drive a couple apart, and it’s not hard to see why. Watching bae “like” another girl’s photo or seeing them tagged in a picture with someone you don’t know is a one way ticket to an argument. But research says one thing could strengthen your bond, and that’s making your relationship Facebook official. It’s like a united front, announcing to everyone that you’ve chosen to be together. It makes your bond feel stronger!
Which one of these tips are you going to try? What did we forget to add? Share in the comments!