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5 Ways Keep Your Relationship Strong

Steven Losardo, LMFT

A recent article notes “studies show that lower feelings of love and less closeness at one time predict a greater likelihood of breaking up (DiDonato, 2021).  DiDonato (2021) adds there are signs you may be on the verge of a break up including emotional detachment, partners being less responsive to good news, and a lack of self-disclosures. The article also highlights negative nonverbal behaviors may deteriorate relationships.  This blog will highlight five promising strategies you can review to be Relationship Strong in these areas. 

  1. interracial couple holding their pet cat in their homeEmotional Connection: How close you feel to your partner.  Be sure to express needs as a positive rather than negatively, reverting to blame or criticism (Gottman 2020).  Be aware of the signals used by your partner when they desire a connection and help your partner know your signs.  Create predictable means of connecting and frequently practice these within the relationship.  An example might be sharing a daily recap of each person’s day (Gottman, 2020).  
  2. Supportive Interactions: When good things happen for your partner, they will want to share the information with you. In the conversation, be upbeat and excited for them!  Hold the space to be their #1 fan!  It is essential to be aware that their good news may come on your bad day.  Put yourself aside and celebrate them!  If you regularly override the positive feelings in the relationship, it creates an override of negativity. Over time, whatever your partner says or does, even when your partner says something neutral or positive it is perceived as a negative comment (Gottman, 2020).  Neither of you will feel as though your partner is an ally. 
  3. Positive Non-verbal Actions: Be aware of how you say things to your partner externally and what you think of them internally.  You have both have views about each other that are held deeply (DiDonato, T. 2021).  These gut-level impressions may be hard to see, but if negative, they can come out of one’s mouth as criticism.  Over time, your partner may now expect to be criticized whenever an issue is raised based on the tone of your voice.  If this happens, work on softening the beginning of your conversations and learning to raise an issue gently without using criticism (Gottman, 2020).  Conversely, you may be turning away from one another for a long time and resentments present.  Then the work is on recognizing and positively responding to bids for connection (Gottman, 2020).
  4. Consistent self-disclosure: Sharing of emotion, similar to sharing positive events, creates and enhances intimacy.  If there is an avoidance of self-disclosure, there can be a path before the action occurs. It is imperative to be aware of this. Gottman (2020) notes that the route includes dismissing your partner and thinking your partner is not there for you.  Next, conflict comes without repair, which keeps negativity in the relationship.  The couple will then avoid conflict and as a result, self-disclosure ends.   
  5. Accept There Will Be A Fall From Grace: Most couples, if not all, have some degree of idealistic distortion.  Put another way; you can have your “rose-colored” glasses on and view the relationship in an overly optimistic manner (Prepare/Enrich, 2014).  This view can cause you to minimize problems inherent in your relationship. Reviewing distortions will be important because the bias will often adversely impact communication, conflict resolution, and closeness (Prepare/Enrich, 2014).  One thing you can do to mitigate this is to ask yourself a few questions from (Prepare/Enrich 2014): 
  • “Do I believe my partner will meet all my needs for companionship?” 
  • “Do I minimize problems or overlook issues?” 

If you answer “yes,” see if your partner may feel that you do not understand their feelings.  If this is the case, it will be essential to understand them.  The information will reduce blame and tendencies to come to inaccurate conclusions (Prepare/Enrich, 2014).


DiDonato, T. (2021).  6 signs of a deteriorating relationship.  Psychology Today.  Retrieved from: on January 6, 2022. 

Gottman, J. (2020).  Retrieved from

on January 5, 2022. 

Prepare/Enrich.  (2014).  Understanding the idealistic distortion score.  Retrieved from 

https://prepare on January 6,


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