How to keep your relationship afloat

It can take work to keep your love alive.
It can take work to keep your love alive. boggy22

YOUR relationship is sailing along well, then it hits an obstacle and springs a few leaks, then a few more. You realise it is starting to sink. The great bond you shared, the closeness you felt is fading or isn't there. The iceberg of our busy lives has struck our relationship and it is about to go under, leaving us a stark choice: abandon it, or make urgent repairs to keep it afloat.

Better still, revitalise it and make it better than it was before. Many a relationship can be salvaged, some that even seem lost. The key is to re-establish the closeness. Here are six ways you can regenerate damaged relationships to give them resilience, depth, strength, and substance. Then they can thrive despite life's hits.

Make time

It is hard to feel close to someone if we don't feel valued or important to them. We feel most valued when others make time for us and make us the priority. We have to work to pay the bills; but is the larger mortgage for the bigger house in the better street really more important than a close friendship with our partner? Make regular time to be alone together. Make your time together precious and a top priority even and especially if you are parents.

Talk and listen

We can't feel close to someone we don't talk and listen to. This works best face-to-face; not using texting, not on the phone, and not by emails, though these can get us by in short bursts. We feel closest by being physically next to each other so we can read each other's body language; how we move, smile, frown, or react. We all like others to hear and appreciate our story.

Share commonality

If we focus on differences we make the other person a potential threat. Look to see what we have in common and we make each other friends. The more we share what we have in common, the closer the relationship. This doesn't mean we have to like all the same things, just focus on sharing what we both like and agree on. If you know your partner also likes long walks, chocolate cake, the movie, the funny show on TV, agree on it.

Make fun time

We want to be with the person who we feel good being around. Having fun together feels great and makes us want to be around each other and be closer. Don't neglect this opportunity to bond. Every week set aside time to do something fun together. It could be games in the bedroom or splashing each other on the beach. Make sure it happens - ensure it's a promise you keep.

Share secrets and build trust

Sharing secrets means you are working as a team to keep something between you that no one else will ever know. How important, trusted, and special must we be if someone is prepared to share their most important secrets? The deeper the secret and the more secrets you share, the closer you can become.

Sharing secrets can make us feel vulnerable and place our heart in someone else's hands. If they validate this trust by never betraying it then we can share 'anything' with each other and further increase our close bond.

Respect, notice and support

We are closest with people who neither try to dominate us nor act like our inferior; those we respect. We can notice someone with a touch, or just say "Hi” if they are in the room. Never give the silent treatment or ignore them - ever. We seek to be with those who support our dreams and ambitions.

Council insurer still covering legal costs for ex CEO, COO

Former Ipswich City Council chief executive Jim Lindsay leaves the Brisbane Magistrates Court in Brisbane,  Wednesday, October 11, 2017. Lindsay is facing charges including official corruption following Crime and Corruption Commission investigations.

Insurance covers legal costs for officers facing criminal charges

Lifesavers program a success

SAVED: A Little Lifesavers program has started at Orion Lagoon where kids like William O'Hara from Dinmore learn the basics of water safety.

Little Lifesavers program will return to Ipswich in February

Suburban Ipswich shopping centre sells for $37m

It last sold five years ago for $14m less

Local Partners

Driver in head-on crash was four times the limit

A MAN who had a BAC of 0.222 after crashing a car about 11.30pm claims he had taken sleeping medication, went to bed at 9pm and doesn't recall anything else.

The one question you should ask on a date

According to a psychologist there’s one simple way to work out what your date is...

Art to fund Hayley's Japan trip

CHASING A DREAM: Hayley Caplin is raising funds to head to Japan in September by auctioning her artwork.

Ipswich teen's big dream

Expert's warning as 3.5m surfing croc spotted at Yeppoon

A croc was sighted just down from the Bangalee boat ramp on Tuesday.

EXPLAINED: Why crocodiles are most dangerous at this time of year

Viral video: Toowoomba teen a global hit with Real Madrid

Toowoomba's Jed Hockin lines up a trick shot.

Toowoomba teen's football shots go viral

'Massive' lace monitor wrangled from under child's bed

The massive lace monitor was found under a bed on a Sunshine Coast property.

1.5m lace monitor raids chicken coop before hiding out in bedroom

10 things you didn't know about 'Dr Death'

Dr Philip Nitschke .

The euthanasia advocate is coming to Lismore next month