Those who are searching for romantic relationships tends to attract partners who are moving along the same life paths as they are. This makes perfect sense in theory, but not necessarily in real life. Why? people go through changes—and not just physically. Their opinions, goals, likes and dislikes go through changes too! By the end of our lifetimes, we’ll have pursued or abandoned so many different goals and paths. So, having a compatible life path with your life partner isn’t necessarily a must—as long as you follow these five rules.
1. Make Love Your Foundation
No matter where you’re going, love for each other is something you should always have in common. Loving someone means you care about them, are curious about them and are willing to continuously work on your relationship. No matter what your personal goals are, you both need to make sure you’re getting what you need from your relationship as you go through your transformations.
2. Remember What Brought You Together
New relationships are so exciting, and people tend to focus on their similarities while downplaying the differences. This is why new relationships tend to feel so easy in the beginning. But with time comes reality, and with reality can come bitter disappointment. The best way to combat this while pursuing your individual life paths is to focus on what brought you together. What initially attracted you to each other? Focus on those things because they are the basics you can refer back to during those time when your life paths make you feel a bit disconnected.
3. Play Together
If you’re not having fun as a couple at least some of the time, your connection will be weakened by boredom, stagnation, and depression. Every couple should strive to find activities they can do together. This is especially important when your life path differs from theirs. This is your bonding time, and even couples with strong bonds still need to work to maintain them. Being loved by your partner is a privilege, and it’s something you need to continuously earn.
4. Give Attention, Support and Praise
The best way to avoid an affair (yours or theirs) is to offer your partner attention, recognition/praise and support. If you don’t, they could actively seek it out from someone else! If you’re in a relationship, this kind of attention provides the support your partner needs and keeps you connected while you each pursue your own life path.
5. Remember, You’re a Team
When it comes to relationships, the people you know are either enemies, competitors or teammates. The one place you don’t want to find an enemy or competitor is in your relationship. If you don’t have the same life path, you may think you don’t have to worry about competition. That isn’t necessarily true. Even with different life paths, you and your partner could compete to see who accomplishes their goals first or who ends up being the most successful. Instead, remember that you’re a team. That means you’re here to support each other and comfort each other.
If you want your relationship to last a lifetime, you have to be flexible and accept the changes that come your way—whether they’re choices made by you or your partner, or whether they’re forced upon your relationship.