Being in a long distance relationship can be hard. Really hard.
That person that you want to be with the most is miles away and it could be months before you see them again.
You might wonder if it is worth all the heartache.
But I’m here to tell you that it definitely CAN be worth it, and that the distance could make your relationship stronger than it might have been if you lived in the same city.
Here, I’ll go through a few tips to help you make the most of your relationship.
When my partner and I first got together, he was living in the UK and I was in Hong Kong!
But I think that starting our relationship so far away from each other actually strengthened our bond right from the beginning, and now we can get through anything together.
You’ll realise that there are actually a lot of benefits to being in a long distance relationship!
1: Talk frequently
The most important element of any relationship is communication.
Luckily for us, technology makes keeping in touch with loved ones so easy, from messaging, to sending photos, to video and audio calls.
Try to schedule a certain part of every day to speak with your partner on the phone, so that you can hear each other’s voices at the very least, and hopefully even see each other’s faces.
It can sometimes be hard to work out how someone’s feeling over text. Things can be easily misunderstood, causing unnecessary friction, so I always prefer to speak “face-to-face” (as it were) on a video call.
This is where you can really benefit from being in a long distance relationship; because you are not able to physically portray your feelings and emotions, you naturally become very good at communicating them through words instead.
Becoming so open about your feelings will ultimately make your relationship stronger.
2: Trust yourself & your partner
Trust is hugely important in any relationship, but in a long distance relationship it is even more so.
There are bound to be times when you might get a little suspicious of people in your partner’s life, and vice-versa, but just remember that you have both committed to your relationship and you have to trust each other if you’re going to make it work.
This goes back to the previous point: if you have a regular, open line of communication between the two of you, it will be easier for you both to trust.
And if something is bothering you, talk about it! Don’t let it fester and build up in your mind until you can’t stand it anymore, because it will likely blow up into an argument that could probably have been avoided.
3: Establish Commitment
Let’s face it, if one or both of you are not fully committed to the relationship, there’s no way it is going to work.
Have the conversation early on so that you’re both clearly on the same page.
This will also really help with building trust between the two of you.
Long distance relationships are hard enough already, without adding uncertainty of whether you both feel the same way or not.
So, if either of you are unsure about your feelings or think you might not be ready to commit to the relationship, it’s probably best to end it early before it becomes too painful.
4: Be patient
I know, I know, it’s so hard! But you will see your person again, and spending every minute of every day willing that moment to come faster is only going to have the opposite effect.
But having something to look forward to is always a good thing, so try to be patient and happy in the knowledge that your happy day WILL come along soon.
Time will pass. It always does.
In the meantime, keep yourself busy with things that you enjoy doing, which leads me onto my next tip…
5: Keep busy outside of the relationship
It can be easy to focus most of your attention on your partner through your phone, but for your own happiness and well-being it’s important to live your own life as well.
Keep up your hobbies and make sure you spend quality time with your friends.
Time kept busy is time not spent moping over your person, and ultimately it will make time go faster!
You could even start a new hobby ‘with’ your partner! And by that I mean, at the same time as them.
Maybe Wednesday evening at 6pm could be time for you both to go running, cycling, or whatever your shared hobby is.
You may not be together, but you’ll know that you’re sharing the experience with each other, and you could even compete on how long you did it for or how far you went!
And then you’ll have another thing to chat about next time you speak.
6: Save up for travel
The ultimate goal is always meeting up again, which means travelling!
For one of you at least. Or maybe you can plan to meet halfway in an area neither of you have visited before!
Either way, travel means money, so keep putting those pennies away so that you can make the most of your time together.
Check out this article for tips on saving money for travel.
7: Make plans for the future
There’s nothing worse than saying goodbye after a lovely time together and not knowing when you will see each other again.
Try to at least plan for the next meeting – it will save you a lot of heartache having that next time to look forward to.
And, if possible, you could even start planning further into the future. Will you be able to turn your long distance relationship into a short distance relationship at some point?
If you established that commitment early on in the relationship, then you both know that you plan to be in it for the long haul, and you might be thinking of ways that you can spend every day together, even if it’s only a distant fantasy at the moment.
Talking about your hopes and dreams together is a wonderful thing to do and can strengthen your relationship, as well as make you excited for your future.
8: Don’t compare your relationship to others
This is a nasty trap to fall into; you see your friends with their partners and feel bitter about all the things that they can do, which you can’t do with your partner.
Maybe your friends don’t understand why you’re in a relationship with someone who you rarely get to see in person.
But it’s important to try not to get caught up in comparisons with other people: every relationship is different!
You could be jealous of someone who shares a house with their partner, but the truth may be that they hardly ever see them due to work, or maybe there is a lack of intimacy there that you don’t know about.
The point is that every relationship has its ups and downs, its strengths and weaknesses, and you never know what goes on behind the scenes.
So don’t compare your relationship with others: as long as you are happy with your partner, that’s all that matters.
9: Surprise them with something in the mail
In this world where everything can be done through a mobile phone, it can be a wonderful surprise to receive something in the mail from someone you love.
I remember crying with happiness when I received a package from my partner from the other side of the world!
None of the items were new; they were all items from his home that meant something to him. He even wrote me a little riddle for me to guess what was what!
So you don’t need to spend lots of money on gifts, especially if the postage is going to cost a bit. I can guarantee a handwritten letter will be very well received!
There is no denying that long distance relationships can be super hard, but I hope that these tips help to alleviate your concerns, and that you can use them to make your relationship even stronger.
Just remember that trust, communication and commitment are the main pillars of a relationship, especially a long distance one.
Do you and your partner have any special tips and tricks that you use to get yourselves through the hard times? What’s the longest time you’ve had to spend apart? And what are the things you look forward to the most when you can be together?
Let me know in the comments! 🙂
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