How much time do you want to spend with your partner? This essential question should be on the table from the very beginning – but in most cases it is not. But no matter how much time you want to spend together, I believe


is essential.

To leave one another enough space has many different aspects. What first comes to mind is

1. Physical space – this can be important as everyone needs alone time once in a while. It doesn’t mean that your partner does not enjoy your company or loves you less. We are all different and have different needs. As always, communication is crucial.

But leaving each other enough space can also mean

2. Recreational space – you do not have to share all of your partners hobbies or even enjoy all of the same things.  If your partner loves to play golf and you don’t, then don’t spoil it for her/him by making your loved one feel guilty. Find something else to do during that time. Don’t force your partner to do things just because you think you have to spend more time together. It only becomes an issue if you have nothing in common and nothing you enjoy doing together, but that is a  whole different story!

3. Emotional space – and this is the toughest one. We all have been in the situation when the film in our head get’s the better of us and what our head is suggesting suddenly feels terribly real. Most of the time we have a handle on ourselves but once in a while the green eyed monster of jealousy shows its ugly and destructive face.

Cornering your loved one when you think something is wrong can be suffacating and overbearing. Approach your partner gently when you believe something is up and show you are there without forcing your help on her/him. Funny how I keep coming back to the essential – good communication (I think I might write something about that after I have completed Rule #7).

Find out what your partner needs – it works both ways, so also what you need – and see where you have common ground and where you need to respect and accept boundaries.

Does it all sound too simple? Perhaps it does but in the end I truly believe it is… We make it so incredibly complicated with our expectations, our hopes and wishes…


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