Facing life’s challenges and the changes that come with them is a daunting prospect for most people. When you’re in a relationship, the dynamics can change and force you to face your couple status in a whole new light! This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, especially if you view life-changing situations as an essential part of your personal growth and development.
Major life events are stressful for most people including couples and getting the right support from a psychologist North Sydney practices offer could be your first step to stress management. Sourcing invaluable empowering tools is another way couples can cope with stressful life events while keeping their relationship intact. Let’s help you navigate change with practical, helpful tips.
5 Ways to Face Life’s Challenges and Changes as a Couple
1. Reach Out for Help
It’s easy to withdraw from the world when faced with difficult times but isolating yourself from the challenges doesn’t support personal growth. It also doesn’t empower you or your partner—if you’re in a relationship. Reaching out for help is a vital step toward getting the support you and your partner need to cope with stressful life events.
Decide as a couple whether you’re going to ask for help from a trusted family member or friend, psychologist, therapist, or a life coach. Seeking professional help is often best for objective and constructive therapy led by an expert who can steer you in the right direction. For example, counselling therapists are equipped to defuse conflicts while improving empathy and understanding between individuals.
2. Evaluate the Changes
Evaluating the changes taking place will help you as a couple assess how much of an impact they will have on your relationship. Work-related changes involving late hours to complete a project should be viewed as a temporary event and accepted as a normal process of life. The same goes for accepting your partner’s desire to start studying again or taking on a new hobby as an individual.
However, if you’re becoming new parents or you’re facing the prospect of accepting a job in another country, understanding the accompanying stressors as a couple determines your general wellbeing in the long run. Assessing the different types of changes and how they influence your relationship is essential if you want to grow as a couple. It also helps you and your partner to come to terms with a healthy compromise.
3. Talk About the Challenges
Keeping quiet about challenges within the relationship leads to resentment and a potential breakdown in communication. Talking about life’s changing events, no matter how small, gives you the space to address your fears together. However, using the right communication skills is important to avoid misunderstandings and conflicts.
Some useful communication tips include:
- Don’t attack your partner: Using the word “I” instead of “you” helps to minimise unnecessary conflict.
- Avoid distractions: Choose a quiet time to have a heart-to-heart chat.
- Communicate clearly: Think about what you want to say and communicate effectively so there’s no misunderstanding about your needs and opinions.
- Listen: Be willing to be an active listener and hear what your partner has to say without thinking about your response while they’re talking.
Discussing your concerns sooner rather than later is better when facing difficult situations as this will prevent tension and anxiety from escalating.
4. Give Each Other Space
Overcoming relationship problems doesn’t always mean you have to be in each other’s proximity 24/7! Giving yourself and your partner space to figure out what is going on allows you some time to re-evaluate what is happening for you and what you need in order to cope with the challenges. Some alone-time also prevents heated conversations when emotions run high—these could have negative consequences if not handled correctly.
So, a time-out is a good idea!
Allow both parties to calm down and assess the issue. You can agree on a time that suits you both to have an open conversation. Or, book an appointment with a couples’ counsellor to mediate a discussion.
5. Avoid Broadcasting Relationship Challenges
It’s not unusual to hear everything about the latest celebrity couple’s argument on social media but if you want your relationship to survive, don’t broadcast its challenges! Whatever you and your partner are facing is personal and should stay between the two of you. Sharing it with friends, family and followers on your social media platform will only fuel problems!
Telling the world betrays your partner’s trust and confidence and makes it harder to come to a healthy resolution as a couple. Just don’t do it!
Overcoming life’s challenges and accompanying changes as a couple takes courage, empathy and respect. Using the right resources such as couples counselling North Sydney therapists provide gives you the support you need when facing stressful life events with your loved one. Committing to face life’s challenges as a joint effort strengthens your relationship while you grow as a couple. One day, you’ll be thankful for growing together and becoming stronger.
Laila Azzahra is a professional writer and blogger that loves to write about technology, business, entertainment, science, and health.