Relationship Behaviors That Damage Your Love

Dr. Colleen Mullen

Are you engaging in behavior that is damaging your relationship and the love, trust, and happiness you once had?

Sometimes, we can do these things without even being aware!

Read this list of actions that will kill your relationship before it is too late to salvage.

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As a marriage and family therapist, I usually talk to my clients about healthy behaviors and communication methods to help get them to a more unified, loving place.

However, I spend a lot of time listening to how the following behaviors are wreaking havoc on their relationships.

It’s quite sad.

8 behaviors to avoid in your relationship

Please note: Couples should diligently avoid the following behaviors to ensure better relationship satisfaction and emotional fulfillment.

  1. Dig your feet in the ground and insist you are right no matter what your partner says.
  2. Don’t respond when your partner asks you something.
  3. Stop doing the activities you know your partner enjoys.
  4. Tell your friends about your arguments.
  5. Stop going on dates and just believe that staying home in the living room is how you spend quality time together.
  6. Stop calling or communicating support during long work days.
  7. Don’t offer to help your honey when they have much life stress on their plate.
  8. Talk over your partner at every opportunity, especially when you are upset.

The solution to this is to do the opposite.

The skills to do the opposite of the above will make you a better communicator, a better listener, and someone who is in tune with your partner and mindful of their needs.

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You can’t go wrong with that combination!

I’m not going to leave you hanging.

Here’s the recipe for a successful relationship:

  1. Sometimes you might both be correct. There doesn’t have to be a “winner.”
  2. When your partner asks you something, respond to them – let them know you’re listening.
  3. Participate in activities just because you know your partner enjoys them.
  4. Leave your friends out of your arguments. It’s appropriate to ask for support, but telling the intimate details of what people say when mad usually just adds fire to the flames of discord.
  5. It’s essential to continue to date each other. I meet many couples saying, “We’re always together.” That’s not the same as spending quality time together, where you just focus on each other and stay in tune with who you are as friends and lovers.
  6. It’s nice to be thought of during the day. It’s easy to get complacent in a relationship and decrease communication. It’s perfectly OK to send your partner a text saying, “I’m thinking of you” when they spend long hours away from home.
  7. Offer emotional support. You don’t have to solve their problems, but you can be there for them emotionally to let them vent their stresses to you.
  8. Listen to hear your partner, not react. Couples that slow down their reactions to each other can hone in and listen to what their partner is saying. This often leads to more peaceful communication and provides more opportunities for learning about your partner.

Final thoughts

When you read this recipe for success, it seems simple and pretty elementary, but it takes practice and developing skills to implement it.

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If you’ve conflicted with your partner, I will encourage you to pick 1 item off the success recipe, implement it this week, and pick a new one to add each week.

Each week, you’ll begin feeling stronger in your abilities to be a communicative, supportive, present, and mindful partner.

Best wishes for success to you!

Dr. Colleen Mullen
Dr. Colleen Mullen, Psy.D., LMFT is the owner of the “Coaching Through Chaos” private practice in San Diego, California. She is also the host of “The Coaching through Chaos Podcast”, a Bloomberg Radio official podcast of the Price of Business radio show on 1110AM KTEK Houston. Dr. Mullen specializes in outpatient addiction treatment, relationships in conflict, treating symptoms of anxiety, depression and PTSD, and enjoys helping her clients work through transitions in their lives. Her podcast presents weekly interviews with guest experts designed to inspire, motivate and empower you! You can interact with Colleen on Twitter @DrColleenMullen. In addition to being quoted in several online articles, Dr. Mullen’s work with addicted professionals has been featured on Fortune.
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