I’m getting personal and doing a little something different so I hope you enjoy it (let me know how you feel about it in the comment section below)!
I’ve been receiving SO many comments about my relationship after I posted a lot of behind the scenes videos during my Italy trip with Jay, so I wanted to get more personal with you and give you a little sneak peek look into our relationship especially as we get ready to head into marriage later this year and hopefully my advice can help you navigating the sometimes confusing steps of a long term partnership.
As someone who loves exploring human nature and reflecting on my own actions and behavior, so naturally exploring intimacy with my significant other has been a very interesting area of life and one which I have found fascinating – even in the most challenging of times. It is very hard to give any general advice because every person is so unique and different and we all want slightly different things out of life. Maybe you’re perfectly single or in a new relationship where it’s all butterflies or dating a insecure or maybe you’re even happily married. I guess whatever your relationship status stands, advice on the topic varies from person to person.
These days so much of what we see in the media is focused on superficial types of online dating like tinder, divorce, cheating and other forms of unhappiness that lack deep and meaningful connection. It makes me so sad when I see so many of the people around me making bad relationship choices that do not bring long term happiness.
After having lived together for many years and having been very good friends for years before we even started dating, here are my secrets for success in any long term relationship:
DON’T SETTLE. DON’T SETTLE for someone who doesn’t treat you like the Goddess you are, someone who doesn’t think you’re the best thing in the universe, someone with no ambition, or someone who is going to hold you back from your deepest passion. Jay encourages me to be my best self. He encourages me to be reach my full potential, to reach for the stars, and he supports me passions. He holds my door open, makes me delicious coffee every morning, reads to me before bedtime, and always finds the most creative ways to make me feel special. His intelligence, wit and ability to intrigue my mind always leave me wanting more of him and never bore me.
These qualities are very important to me. We are all different and all want different qualities, so whatever you truly want make sure you stick to those values and don’t compromise for a bad relationship. Simply put, don’t settle for anything less than you believe you deserve. At the end of the day, your partner is a reflection of you. They are on your team and you are on their team.
Know each other’s love languages and learn how to speak them. When Jay and I went from friendship to dating I tried my best to dress up to the nines to impress him. One every date I would patiently wait for him to give me a compliment or tell me I am beautiful or mention something about how I had dressed. As an engineer with a rational ENTJ mindset (yes I love the Meyers Briggs personality system), he never said one word about how I looked for months and months. This started to drive me slightly crazy and I kept thinking ‘he doesn’t really like me…maybe he is just not that into me’. Now Jay and I love to laugh about this huge love language miscommunication.
My top love language is words of affirmation, which means I need verbal words as a form of acknowledgement, encouragement and love. From Jay’s perspective he was spending a lot of quality time with me on multiple dates a week for months, and he saw that as a huge form of investment, commitment and showing interest in me. It turned out he did think I was beautiful and did like my outfits (hehe) but he assumed that the large amount of time spent with me meant that I would automatically understand that. Over time we have learned to teach each other in a respectful and open way how to receive and give these different forms of love. We are also not shy with each other about directly asking for what we want in case our partner forgets to speak our language. Another key is that we do not blame or hold resentment toward each other if the other person failed to meet our love language expectation in the moment. We are not perfect and sometimes offend each other, but we always communicate and discuss these misunderstandings in an open way full of respect for the other person.
Sometimes it can be tricky to learn your significant other’s love language, but it is one of the keys to meeting your spouse’s deep emotional needs and so worth the effort! My suggestion is to observe what your spouse requests of you most often. If he frequently asks you to go on a long hike with him,do an activity that requires your full attention together or have a weekend getaway, he might be asking for quality time.
Keep your expectations high. It is worth the effort to not have a second rate marriage. I hear so many of my friends fearing commitment these days and lowering their expectations of dating and marriage because they no longer believe that a passionate, amazing abundant long term relationship is possible. Some might say that I have idealistic standards, but I believe that those who really want to be treated well and who want romance and passion from their marriage, end up getting that kind of marriage because they put the effort into doing so. For instance, I always make sure that even if we are both having a stressful week, we carve out a couple of special date nights to connect and enjoy each other. I personally love cooking, so I will surprise Jay a couple times a week with a yummy dinner, some wine and I will make sure to wear something fun and sexy so he feels well taken care of and the passion stays alive. I also always give him lots of hugs and kisses every morning and every night and make sure to express to him how much I value him and how happy I am to see him every morning and every night. Its those little ways of being caring and positive toward each other throughout the day that truly make a difference. And as time has gone on I can tell you that I fall in love with him more and more deeply everyday as we grow together.
Create Intimacy! Most Americans are raised with a strong survival instinct. It is an inherited belief that only the strong will survive. Independence and autonomy are paramount for our success and survival. Many partners carry this attitude into a relationship and believe that each person should stand independent of the other and not expect to be protected or cared for. Often individual’s personal needs are the priority and come before the needs of the couple as a whole. Instead I encourage you to practice healthy interdependence. We all seek a safe zone, which is a safe place where we feel accepted, wanted, protected, and cared for by another. Ideally, our partner is a safe haven for us to settle and find a place of intimacy. Jay and I work have worked hard over time to create a cocoon that holds the us together and protects each partner from outside stressors.
For instance, we always hug or give each other a kiss before we leave to go to work and whenever we come back home at the end of the day. We always seek to connect before launching into other tasks.
I also asked Jay for his advice on what it takes to have a successful relationship, and he said: “Both people have to put in effort. It takes a lot of effort everyday. You can’t just chill. Well you have to chill in the right way. And it shouldn’t feel like effort if you truly like the other person and like spending time with the other person. And have sex. Lots of and lots of sex!”.
What is your take on a great relationship? You know that I love to hear your stories so much o comment below!
As you can by tell by now I love to stand out and feel unique and I also don’t like to follow traditions and rules of society. In fact I like to make my own rules and traditions, especially when it comes to my personal style and my relationship with Jay. We are all individuals and I strongly believe that everyone should honor their own sense of self and values first and foremost before embarking on anything – whether that be purchasing a new outfit, changing jobs or choosing how to get married. That’s why I love wearing Fame and Partners customizable pieces so much, especially for weddings or events, because each piece is so well made and sophisticated while enhancing the individuality of the woman inside.
For this editorial I shot at the Fairmont Hotel on Nob Hill Grace Cathedral wearing the gorgeous dusty rose Delphine dress which makes me feel empowered, feminine and most importantly like ME. I can’t wait to wear it for my rehearsal dinner later this year and for many more years to come!