Accept, Respect & Space

Your partner will have a difference of opinion on some issues. He is not your clone. Let him have his ideas. You don't need to argue to prove you're right and you don't need to sulk because he disagrees with you. If there are serious issues you are arguing about, find a way to convince him. Don't try to change your partner, but motivate him to look at things differently if it's really that important to you. Dr Shefali Batra, a prominent psychiatrist in Mumbai, suggests that you should respect the choices he makes and give him space to deal with issues in his own way—rather than telling him how it should be done.

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A Relationship Doesn't Complete You

Don't lose your identity in a relationship. Who are you? What are your dreams? What are your goals? What if your partner wasn't there? What if he walks out on you tomorrow? According to Dr. Amit Malik, founder at InnerHour, women need to define themselves outside of a relationship. Only then will couples not take their partners and their relationship for granted. When you are happy with yourself you will be happy within the relationship as well. And within the relationship women need to find boundaries. If you're a strong, working woman outside doesn't mean that you need to any less in your personal life. A relationship, he adds, should enhance your life, not deplete it.

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You want him to come home early. You want to go for a drive. You want him to attend family functions with you. Every couple has expectations. It's important to convey what you want and then allow the person to do the things you want, or not, when he's ready. "Don't badger him into doing things as per your time schedule", says Dr. Shefali Batra. Understand when he's not willing to make certain changes. Let those go. Also, many times women keep their expectations to themselves hoping the man she's spent so much time will understand her. Men aren't mind readers. You need to voice what you want or expect, and remind him occasionally if he forgets.

Boost & Market Yourself

For most women, their spouse, their home and their marriage become their entire life. Very soon they start questioning their own achievments. They get no validation in the house. Gitali Chatterji, Senior Psychologist at Inner Space says it's very important to build your self-esteem. Even if you don't have a job, understand that what you're doing at home is important. Recognise past instances where you've solved tricky situations and appreciate yourself for it. Sometimes it's also important to remind your partner of all that you do for him. Boost yourself up a little in his eyes. Market your capabilities by saying something as innocent as, 'I'm glad I could help you solve that situation otherwise it would have been a complete disaster'. Or, 'Imagine if I wasn't there to cook/clean/manage that for you. You would have taken much longer to tackle/complete it'.

Pause Before Reacting

One of the most important things anyone can do in a relationship, according to Psychologist Gitali Chatterji is to pause before reacting to their partner. It's very easy for women to be offended by what the man says, or react in a negative way, and then analyse where the fight began and how it all became sour. Suppose the man has said something that you weren't expecting, instead of immediately snapping back, just pause and think if it's important to react in a negative way and what else could he have meant. Maybe the man has behaved badly for some reason and your instant reaction is to scold him, tell him off, have a fight, and prove how hurt you are. Pause. Is it the correct time to talk about it? Is it something that is very important? Can you change your tone if you're about to speak? Gitali says that split second where you think before you react could save a relationship and two people from a lot of angst. 

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