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Relationships can be the most rewarding things in our lives and, sometimes, the most frustrating things all at once. Whether conflicts involve money, chores, sex or so on, the keys to resolution involve communication, honesty and a plan.

Let’s start with communication. Most often, opening up to a partner begins with body language. Listening can begin with eye contact and making sure you are actually hearing your partner. Rephrasing their comments can help keep you both on the same page in understanding the meaning of what they are trying to convey.

Being honest might seem a no-brainer for some, yet others’ lines between honesty and “not quite telling the truth” become somewhat muddled. The first step is being completely honest with yourself. From there, you can acknowledge your part in the full relationship. Taking responsibility for your own actions, downfalls and feelings is a huge step in meeting in the middle.

Planning might seem too rigid for a relationship, but it can sometimes be the glue that keeps a relationship running strong. As a team, it can be of great importance to plan a whole host of things ~ A budget, date nights, every day duties, child care, how to stop a fight in its tracks, all just for examples.

Awareness in all of these areas can keep your relationship in a positive state, yet there are obviously more intense and complicated issues that could benefit from couples therapy. A third party can offer invaluable assistance to put your togetherness back on the right track.