Finding love and keeping love is a journey that can seem impossible at times. However, in spite of all odds, some couples seem to be able to stay together, even in the face of major obstacles.

So what separates them from the rest? While part of it might be true chemistry, for the most part, it comes down to the love habits of the two people participating in the relationship. And the same goes for when relationships fail. More often than not, when a relationship fails, it has a lot to do with how the two people are showing up to the relationship.

If you have begun a new relationship and are really feeling like there is potential, you might be wondering what the two of you can do to make the relationship last, so the two of you can stay in love moving forward. Here are 12 habits of couples that stay madly in love.

1. They have meaningful conversations.

Couples who stay together take time to conversate stay together. And I don’t mean small talk or little conversations here and there. I mean couples who talk with each other about everything.

2. They fight productively.

A lot of people assume if you fight with your partner, then the relationship is not good. That couldn’t be further from the truth. The difference is in how you fight. If you fight with contempt, then yes, it is likely the relationship is doomed. But, if you fight with the goal of overcoming the obstacles in front of you, then it’s likely the relationship will stand the test of time.

3. They stow their ego to the side to resolve conflicts.

You cannot have two egos constantly mashing up against one another in a long-lasting relationship. Instead, you must be able to both stow away your egos and work to do things for the relationship, not just your individual selves. This can be really hard for most people at first, but as you learn about each other and work with yourselves on this, it can be learned.

4. They share the same values.

In order to make a relationship last, you MUST have shared values. Yes, it’s nice to have things in common in other ways, but it’s so much more important to have shared core values, so you can make a future together that works.

5. They play on the same team.

Another thing that can make or break a relationship is whether or not you approach your relationship as a team. You can either fight against each other, or fight together as a team for your relationship to last.

6. They don’t crowd each other.

It might seem counterproductive – but you don’t have to spend every waking moment with your partner to prove your love. On the contrary, you need to learn how to still maintain your own identity and life, outside of your relationship. Your partner fell in love with you as an individual, if you mesh into them and lose yourself, you lose that version of yourself that they fell in love with in the first place.

7. They stow away petty jealousy and obsession.

Couples that are constantly jealous and obsessed over their partner don’t typically last. If they do, it’s a total nightmare, so who wants that?

8. They show appreciation.

It might seem like your partner should just know how much you appreciate them. However, you both have to show one another that you appreciate them. You can do this through acts of love, or you can literally tell them and communicate to them how you appreciate them.

9. They stoke the fire.

At the beginning of a relationship, there’s a spark that comes without much effort. But as time goes on, the spark does begin to fade. That’s when it becomes our job to continue to keep that fire stoked. And in order to do that, you have to go out of your way to keep the fire alive. Regular dates, cuddling, deep talks, and sex can do a lot of good in this area.

10. They adapt to change.

Things are going to change outside of your relationship because the world is always changing. Couples that learn to adapt will inevitably stand against those odds and find a way to overcome those changes and stay together.

11. They keep their personal relationship drama to themselves.

When the two of you inevitably encounter major problems, you might be tempted to vent to your family members or friends. And while it’s perfectly fine to vent about things from time, you don’t want to invite everyone you know into your personal problems. The foremost reason for this is that your mom or brother may not forgive your partner, while eventually you likely will. Which can add even more pressure on your relationship and its problems.

12. Intimacy goes beyond just the physical.

Intimacy is not just pleasure. Find ways to bare your soul to your partner. Make out with them, snuggle with them, tell them about your secrets and make a real effort to be truly intimate with them.

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