How to Fix Your Relationship When Things Are Going Downhill

All relationships go through ups and downs.

While sometimes it's better to simply let things end, other times you might be able to salvage your romance. You just need the right approach.

Keep scrolling for our tips on how to fix your relationship when you feel like things are going downhill.

Evaluate Your Relationship

First and foremost, you have to identify the source of your relationship problems. If you feel like your problems stem from a difference in your core values, there's usually nothing to be done. You and your partner have to be on the same page on the important stuff. If you're not, it's better in the long run to bid your relationship adieu.

However, if you feel that your problems stem from misunderstandings, personal insecurities or a lack of effective communication, there's hope. Those issues can be worked on and improved, resulting in a stronger relationship with your S.O. if handled effectively. If you can identify the source of your problems, you can decide if the relationship is worth salvaging, or if it's better to simply walk away.

Aria and Ezra holding hands while sitting on bench

(Pretty Little Liars via Freedom)

 

Examine Your Commitment

If you've determined that your relationship problems don't stem from core issues, you next have to examine the commitment that's present in your romance. A relationship can only be saved if both people are committed to working things out. Ask yourself—do you have a genuine desire to be with your partner? Are you willing to put in the work to make that happen? If the answer's no, you know what you have to do.

If the answer is yes, however, you then have to examine your partner's commitment to the romance. Do you think they're willing to work things out? Do you believe that they're fully committed to their relationship with you? If you think both you and your partner are ready and willing to stick things out, you can move forward with improving your relationship.

 

Focus on the Positive

Once things start to become difficult in a relationship, it becomes progressively easier to let the negative things outshine the positive things. By focusing on what's lacking in your relationship or what's frustrating you about your partner, you subconsciously become more sensitive to their every statement. Arguments increase and eventually you're caught in a self-created spiral of doubt and insecurity regarding your S.O.

The thing is, not every rough patch is a sign that things are going to end. Instead, it may be just that—a rough patch that doesn't really have any bearing on the rest of your relationship. Before you decide that things between you and your S.O. are doomed, try to focus on the positive qualities of your relationship. If you can remember why you care about them so much, you'll be much more prepared to work things out, instead of bailing every time the two of you disagree on something.

To All the Boys I've Loved Before: Lara Jean and Peter cuddling on the bus home from the ski trip

(To All the Boys I've Loved Before via Netflix)

 

Emphasize Communication

We'll let you in on a little secret—most, if not all, relationship problems can be fixed with effective communication. While there may be other factors lending themselves to the issues in your partnership, communication should be your main focus. Not only does it give you a singular goal to work towards, it also creates a space where both you and your partner can feel heard and appreciated.

Effective communication involves listening to your partner, practicing empathy for their emotions, being honest with your feelings, limiting the passion in your conversation and asking questions. Put more simply, you and your partner should practice having calm conversations where you both share how you're feeling in a kind, but honest way. Then, you can both ask clarifying questions about the other person's feelings and develop an understanding of the underlying issues in your romance. Once you know how your partner feels, fixing things becomes immensely easier.

 

Make Time for Your Relationship

It's pretty hard to fix problems in your relationship when you and your partner aren't making time for one another. As a part of improving your romance, ensure that both of you are setting aside dedicated time just for the two of you. Even if it's only 30 minutes a day of talking on the phone, time for the two of you to enjoy each other's company is important. Not only will it improve the positivity in your romance, it will also give you a chance to actually discuss what's going on, instead of simply brushing it under the rug.

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(Gossip Girl via The CW)

 

Give It Time

Sometimes your relationship just needs time to get past the rough patch and get back on track. While it's frustrating to know that things aren't 100% perfect between you and your partner, time may be the best thing for your romance. If you put too much pressure on fixing things right away, you're going to create a stressful situation for both you and your partner. Chances are nothing will be solved when you've put a time limit on improving your romance. Instead, give your relationship space to get back on track. Without that pressure, you and your partner will both feel more comfortable spending time together and slowly moving your romance towards the place it should be.

 

Forgive

Nothing will improve in your relationship if you don't let go of past hurt. If you feel that you're in a bad place, it's likely that both of you have said and done hurtful things. If you keep those in the back of your mind to whip out in your next argument, you're not creating a space for your relationship to move forward. If you want to make things work with your partner, you have to fully and completely forgive their past mistakes. Once you've done that, the two of you have a real chance of moving forward with a fresh slate and no bitterness.

 

Looking for more dating advice? Click HERE for six things you should never forgive in a past relationship.