5 Secrets For Keeping A Long-Distance Relationship Alive

OK, you’re in a long-distance relationship or you’re about to begin one. you want to keep the love alive and you’re not sure how.

Nothing will change that a long-distance relationship is a challenge. But, like most challenges in life, goals and perspectives are the most important parts. Read this list to figure out how to change the negatives of your long-distance situation into positives, and come away with a stronger relationship than ever.

Scheduling and flexibility
One of the biggest issues that comes up in long-distance relationships—other than being apart itself—is time difference. If you’re working in Vancouver and your partner is in Toronto, even the three-hour time difference can really have an effect.

Always make sure to prioritize your schedules well, making sure that the time you have planned to talk is free for both of you. That being said, also make sure your schedule remains flexible enough to get interrupted—at the right time. And don’t be upset if your partner has to cancel your talk last minute, as long as they understand that you want to talk to them, and will make time for you later, then everything is going fine.

Managing Doubt
One of the hardest parts of a long-distance relationship is wondering what the other person is doing, wondering if they like it better where they are, and generally wondering if the situation is going to work out. Everyone has doubts—your partner has them too. But, if you bring those doubts to the table as negatives, and base your actions on them, you’ll start to erode the baseline of trust in your relationship.

Talk openly about your doubts in a manner than explains how much you love your partner and that these are natural fears. Let expressing your fears bring you closer together instead of pushing you apart. Remember, you wouldn’t be in a long-distance relationship at all if you didn’t love each other.

It’s an opportunity to communicate better
Long-distance relationships are scary, but they are also opportunities to strengthen the bond you have with your partner. If your partner is away and going through stress, make sure that they feel supported even from a distance through compliments, messages or gifts. If you’re the one away, working through something new, make sure that you remind yourself to check in with your partner, ask how they are doing, and make them feel like part of your life there.   Your time to talk to each other will be limited, so make it count. Take long distance as an opportunity to open your heart more, choose your words better and really let this person know how you feel about them. If you do that, chances are you’ll come out of your time apart with a bond stronger than the one you started with.

Play the end-game
The reason you got into a long-distance relationship is because you see a long-term partnership in this relationship. If you didn’t, you probably would have cut it off when you two moved to different cities. The period of a long-distance relationship is a great time to formalize the plans you have for the future and see if you two have similar end-goals. If there isn’t a clear end in sight, then it’s much more difficult to see your own long-distance efforts playing out positively. But if you know that in 3 months, 8 months, or 2 years that you plan to be in the same city again and working towards common goals, the time-span starts to look more possible. Remember, you can sacrifice being away from them some of the time in order to be with them over time.

Live YOUR life
This is an incredibly important one: don’t delay your life waiting on your partner. Without a doubt their time should be respected, but so should yours. You never know what twists and turns lay waiting in your future—the time you thought you would be apart may be unexpectedly extended. You need to have enough going on in your life that you’re not waiting for your partner’s return at every moment. And you need to grow personally, in order to make sure you don’t start resenting your partner’s growth. The point of a long-distance relationship is to respect each other as individuals that choose to be together, despite its challenges. Live in that truth and take your long-distance as a new, positive step in your life.

Zach Buck

Zach Buck

Zach Buck is a writer and editor currently living in South Korea. He serves as the official editor of Spatial Studies magazine HEADREST. In 2016 he released experimental digital archive game house.xct_ with Other Families, and it can be read about on otherfamilies.ca.

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