Though fights are necessary occasionally — and I really do mean occasionally — you should always be able to tell someone what's going on without having them blow up. Though this may seem obvious, it's easy to get caught up with something, and it's important to keep your head when you're dating or falling in love. Picking someone who is willing to own their stuff makes relationships more successful," she says. Find solid double date partners you enjoy. Sushi?

“In Celebrating Solitude , I urge couples to view solitude as a tool in relationship health.” Though it can be tempting to spend all day every day together, it’s important to have separate work lives and spend some time apart from time to time.

If we are resistant to sharing our needs, usually it is because we are afraid we will discover that we are unable or unwilling to meet our partner’s needs, or that they are unwilling or unable to meet ours. Periodically stop when you're both on the same chapter to discuss what's going on, then have a larger talk at the end. Acknowledging your contribution — meaning what you say and do — is what defines accountability," she says. You can do this with paper or popsicle sticks or basically any flat material you can write on. Whether it's a couple hours away from where you live or it's a plane ride to Europe, pick a destination and break new ground together. Be sure that your own skills in this arena are on point, and then search for someone who has the same abilities. You want to lay in a hammock on the first Saturday of every month? We’ll place some orders and see how that works for you.” None of this clarity would have been possible without your figuring out what your needs are and then sharing them. So look for someone who doesn't always have to be right. The target of the blame could be ourselves, our partner, our parents – just about anyone or anything. But, who knows, maybe they’d say, “Look, we’ve never met these kinds of needs before. "If there’s something you’re not saying because you think your date wouldn’t like it, you need to say it, so you can see what happens when you disagree." “Evolutionary speaking, we want a mate who wants to live and be strong, not someone who is hell bent on being a victim.” Yes! Dog-sit (or pet-sit, whatever) for a friend. When we have a need that is not being satisfied in our relationship, we may feel deprived, or like something is wrong.

Go to a pet shelter, or a soup kitchen, or a homeless shelter, or wherever and volunteer your time together. And more importantly, if everything always went along seamlessly in a relationship, then where would the attraction and growth come from?" Even mutual meditation counts as a task. Or perhaps you're both obsessed with making a new, sexed up version of Clue. Also, have a look at the way breakups have gone in the past. Ideally, both of you will have lists and you can share them with each other. "Learning how to handle disagreements and work together to come up with a solution is one of the most important aspects of good partnership," Tessina says. And it's not just about kindness for you — look for someone who's kind inwardly as well. "The ability to compromise is a crucial component of any relationship," dating expert Noah Van Hochman tells Bustle. Finally, allow them to make any requests of you to help them get their needs met. Pro tip: Wear clothes you don't care about ruining!

Heading up that list, of course, is any kind of physical or emotional abuse — it is never OK to put up with behavior like that, and if you're experiencing such a thing, it's always a good idea to reach out and get help. "Can the two of you talk about difficult things without fighting?"

Even if you already have a pet, offer to pet-sit for your friends for an entire day.

2020 Bustle Digital Group. Romance, psychotherapist and author of Love Styles: How to Celebrate Your Differences , asks Bustle.

“In reality, brief periods of solitude recharge our soul batteries and allow us to give even more to our partners and to the relationship itself.” What could be better than that? Tina B. Tessina, aka Dr. If we’re concerned that our partner has needs we cannot fulfill, isn’t it better to invite them to express these, and see what can be done toward their fulfillment, than to remain in the dark?

Yes, "having a marshmallow fight" is on here.

If something feels wrong in our relationship or we notice we are acting in a destructive way toward the relationship, this is a good time to go over our needs list and see if there is an unmet need. "Give this person hints about things that are important to you, maybe it's that you like to make plans by Tuesday for your weekend, maybe it's that you like a certain restaurant or sports team, but have them show you that they are listening to your conversations about what makes you tick,” she says. Turn off your phones, computers, televisions, tablets, iPods, stereos, and whatever else is a technological distraction for a full 24 hours and enjoy the company of your significant other.

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