What to Do If You Struggle to Spend Time Away From Your Partner
Spending time away from your S.O. is so important.
Unfortunately, it's often easier said than done. In theory, you might know that having separate lives is crucial to a healthy relationship. But in practice, you always manage to convince yourself it's not that bad to spend all your time with your person.
When you and your S.O. really get along, it's easy to be with them 24/7. In fact, if you're really attached to your partner, spending time away from them can feel awkward, strange or just plain wrong.
Still, it's important that you get used to being away from your S.O. Keep scrolling for our tips on what to do if you struggle to spend time away from your partner.
Understand Why It's Important
Before you can convince yourself to spend time away from your partner, you have to understand why it's important. When you're in a relationship, you can easily fall into a routine. You do the same things day after day, which gets boring after a while. Spending time apart allows you to change things up and keep your relationship exciting. If you're constantly following the same routine, the relationship will grow stale quickly.
Additionally, spending all your time with your partner means you're putting a lot of pressure on them to be everything to you all the time. They have to be your best friend, your adventure buddy, your confidant and so much more. While your partner might be all of that to you, you should also have other people in your life who fill those roles. When you do, you won't expect too much from your partner, which keeps your relationship strong.
Lastly, spending all your time with your partner creates a somewhat codependent relationship. You have to be able to survive without having your person by your side 24/7. Autonomy and independence are still important, even when you're in a relationship. Learn to be away from your partner so you can stand on your own two feet. Otherwise, your relationship won't last very long.
Find Something That's Only Yours
Spending time away from your partner doesn't have to be a chore. After all, you're not separating from your person just for the sake of it. Having your own life actually makes your relationship that much better because it keeps the novelty alive.
Instead of forcing yourself to be away from your partner, try finding something that excites you. There's one caveat: It has to be something your partner definitely won't be interested in. Something as simple as a hobby they won't care about or even a TV show they're definitely not going to watch will work.
By pursuing something that you want to do but your partner doesn't, you create natural space in your relationship. If you find something interesting enough, odds are you won't even miss your partner. When you have something to occupy your time, you'll get the space you both need, but you won't spend the time apart thinking about how you should be together.
Prioritize Other Relationships
Spending time away from your partner doesn't mean that you just have to sit in your room and be alone. Instead, spending time apart should be a chance for you to prioritize other relationships in your life. Make time for separation from your partner by planning things with your friends and family. Make sure you prioritize the other relationships that matter to you and that you're giving them enough of your time and attention to keep the relationship strong.
Your partner might be important, but they're not the only relationship that matters. If you have nothing else to do, that's a perfect time to hang out with your partner! But it's also important to reach out to friends and family and to say yes when they want to spend time with you. By hanging out with other people you'll keep your relationships strong, and you'll be busy enough that you won't miss your partner quite as much.
Get Comfortable Being Alone
Yes, you don't have to separate from your partner just for the sake of spending time alone. But being comfortable all by yourself isn't a bad thing. Oftentimes, when people cling to their partners so aggressively, it's due to the fact that they're not comfortable on their own. If you can't be at peace just being by yourself, you'll always be clinging to other people trying to fill that void.
To get comfortable being alone, it's okay to start slow. Try taking a shower without listening to music or podcasts to simply spend time with your thoughts. Take half an hour a day to just be by yourself, without talking to or spending time with anyone else. As you get more comfortable being on your own, you'll find that you obsessive need to be with your partner will disappear.
Plan a Post-Separation Date
If you really have a hard time separating from your partner, turn it into a sort of game. Reward yourself for the time you spend apart by spending even better quality time together. For example, maybe you and your partner decide that you're going to do your own thing on Friday, but you'll follow it up with a special date night on Saturday.
By planning rewards for your time apart, you'll be more inclined to suffer through the separation to get to the prize. Eventually, spending time apart won't seem that scary anymore. Plus, you may find that your moments with your partner are that much more special because both of you have time to miss each other.
Being away from your partner doesn't mean zero contact. There's a nifty little device called a phone that allows you to stay connected to your person, even when you're not together.
Now, this is a slippery slope. On one hand, you don't want to spend all your time apart glued to your phone texting your partner. But if you struggle to take time for yourself, staying connected helps to ease the pain slightly. Don't commit to a full conversation if you're around other people, but don't feel bad about sending your partner the occasional text just to keep in touch. By maintaining some kind of connection, the anxiety of being apart should dissipate slightly, helping you to transition into taking more time for yourself.
Looking for more dating advice? Click HERE for eight common Instagram mistakes that could ruin your relationship.