No one plans on being in a long distance relationship. When cupid’s arrow strikes, in the case of LDR, it’s oftentimes completely irrational but indisputably an enchanting occurrence. There is a lot of stigma about LDR, and a misconception that long distance love simply doesn’t work. It’s not that long distance love doesn’t work; it’s simply that particular long-distance relationships did not work, just as many local relationships don’t work out. In fact, the statistics on long distance relationships are promising. With that said, how to LDR?
“According to a 2013 study from the Journal of Communication, approximately three million Americans live apart from their spouse at some point during their marriage, and 75% of college students have been in a long distance relationship at one time or another. Research has even shown that long distance couples tend to have the same or more satisfaction in their relationships than couples who are geographically close, and higher levels of dedication to their relationships and less feelings of being trapped.”
Relationships bring out in us what it is we need to heal within ourselves; they serve as our greatest teachers, whether they last a life time or a short time, whether we are in the same town or in different countries. Love distance love can be tricky to navigate, yet, love has no boundaries..
Listed are 5 tips to thrive in a LDR:
MAKE FUN PLANS
Having that special time to look forward to helps keep good feelings in your relationship at a high level. Relationships must grow and evolve or they become stagnant. It is exciting to create a countdown leading to a shared in-person union and experience together. Space away from one another, gives couples the opportunity to connect spiritually, energetically and emotionally. It’s time to really get to know one another on the deeper levels, and when you do spend time with one another you are grateful for every second that you have together. So often couples who live together or see each other very frequently forget their love and they take each other for granted, allowing the relationship to become dull and passionless. LDR creates an opportunity to keep the relationship fresher longer.
You can also try reading on how you can keep your intimacy alive in your long distance relationship.
COMMITMENT, COMMUNICATION AND UNDERSTANDING
Communication is most effective when natural and organic. However, it is very easy to fall into the trap of not prioritising one another or the relationship. Humans are adaptable creatures and can become comfortable with the distance and settle into their individual busy lives, leaving one or both parties feeling neglected and lonely. Create a communication structure that is at a level agreeable to both parties. Technology is your best friend. 2019 is the digital era where we have the accessibility to share our lives in real time. Take advantage!
Where there is lack of communication you will find the cultivation of distrust. Doubt kills relationships. If communication becomes de-prioritised the egoic mind will play tricks, create worry, and have couples second-guessing the relationship, which can lead to making reactive assumptions that are detrimental to relationship health. Over-communication and constant ‘checking in’ due to relationship insecurity will suffocate the other party, leading to the unraveling of a once great relationship. If choosing to enter a LDR it is pivotal you are 100% two feet in. Commitment is key. When doubts sets in, commit to having a conversation to gain understanding of your partner. Understanding leads to the ability to have compassion for one another and keep your relationship moving forward.
LDR communication bonus: An advantage of LDR is that you have the ability to learn much more about one another in conversation because you will be spending less time together doing mundane activities such as netflix binges and running errands.
If navigated properly, time apart can actually be beneficial to the relationship. It provides an opportunity to focus on the self, ensuring each party is coming from a place of wholeness and life fulfillment, while still being in love. Seize the opportunity to elevate professionally, physically and mentally. Empowering oneself to live their best life is the surest method to combat relationship insecurity. It is an ideal time to cultivate new friendships, re-ignite older ones, spend time with family, participate in and discover hobbies and interests. This expansion of self is sexy, and also allows more contribution to the relationship. The path to a blissful relationship always begins with our relationship to ourselves.
It takes creativity to keep a relationship fresh. Variety is the spice of life. All relationships take work and LDR in particular require thoughtfulness and flare. Surprise your LDR love with thoughtful and personalized care packages. Write and mail a handwritten letter. Plan a Skype movie date. Send playful pics and videos. Play online games together. Do things together and for one another when you are apart.
So, how to LDR? One of the most important factors in the success of a long distance relationship is that there must be an end goal. Each person’s end goal must be in alignment with the other. It is imperative that there is a plan for what happens next, and where the relationship is going. Every LDR needs light at the end of the long distance tunnel and the knowledge that both parties are working towards that goal as a team. Without this plan, a LDR seems daunting at best. It should be clear that the distance is a temporary circumstance. Keep your eye on the prize. Communicate regularly about desired outcomes. Talk often about the ‘will be’s’ and the ‘when’s’ to keep the relationship vibe’n at high levels!