1. Begin to think like a couple thinks. You want to be an effective team during this rebuilding process so you must begin to think like an efficient team. You can’t be selfish nor can you be so independent that you won’t give up ideas that an individual would use in problem solving or other situations that might arise. You want to approach everything as a couple so together you can reap double the rewards.
2. You have to give your spouse space. You can’t smother them and control their every move. You must encourage them to seek hobbies and interests that will strengthen their self-confidence and self-esteem. Let them develop as a person and they will respond favorably to you and your development as an individual.
3. Be patient. Not one of us is perfect and in your relationship rebuilding process, you must be patient and love your mate with compassion and caring. Be flexible in your reactions and responses. Take time to think before you speak something that might cause a backset in what you have worked so hard to rebuild. Don’t be in a hurry; rebuilding a relationship will take time.
4. Respect each other. This is an expansive area that requires particular attention to all facets of personality and habits. You must respect each other’s values, privacy, career, and character. Learn to appreciate their sense of humor and their point of view. Be strong for them when they are weak and respect their efforts and choices. Respect will be the stone that is placed on top of the cornerstone of your relationship. It sets the tone for your marriage and its success or failure.
5. Make time to work on the rebuilding of your relationship. Everyone is busy with hectic careers and families but time is of the essence when a relationship is broken and is in need of repair. Compare your schedules and “pencil in” your spouse for some down time. You can use this time to select any of the methods listed thus far and work with them. The more time you set aside to spend together, the faster the healing will permeate through your interactions.
6. Plan a date night. As you look at the schedules, make time to take your spouse out for a date like you used to enjoy. It should be just the two of you and should include an activity that you both enjoy doing. Try not to discuss the children, problems at work, or repairs needed around the house. You are working on what needs the most repairs as you communicate on this evening out.
7. Go out with other couples. You should have some friends that you see on a regular basis as a couple. You don’t have to dine out at expensive restaurants; you can cook a meal together in someone’s home or just sit and have snacks. Engage in good, strong communication and share experiences and thoughts on a variety of subjects. This will give each spouse a chance to connect with people who are going through some of the same issues that youare going through. Laugh, enjoy, and be yourself; this will make your relationship stronger too.
8. Don’t complain. You should be as positive as you can be in the situation. No one likes to be around someone who is negative and never has anything good to say. Complaining will dampen your spirits and cause your relationship rebuilding process to stagnate.
9. Stop judging yourself and others. You are wasting valuable time and effort when you continually judge your spouse or yourself too harshly. You have to get past the past and dive into a brighter, more positive future.
10. Have conversations about things that don’t really matter. By discussing things that are not crucial to your relationship and are not a source of conflict, you open communication lines that can later be used to discuss the more pressing issues and concerns. This way, you can become accustomed to carrying on a good conversation with your spouse and deal more efficiently with the problems at hand.
11. Forgive yourself. You have to forget the past and move toward a better and brighter future and the sooner you forgive yourself, the sooner the healing process can being. Try to forget the guilt you are carrying around and understand that this is a big stumbling block in the rebuilding of your relationship with your spouse.
12. Take baby steps as you work through the rebuilding process. You cannot expect success to come overnight. Take things easy and at a pace that is comfortable for you and your spouse. If you get in a big hurry to get things “back to normal” you will take two steps forward and three steps backward every time you encounter another problem. A slow, easy, deliberate pace is the best method for success.
13. Address every problem that is wrong in your relationship. You can’t skip this step in the process. Just like a house infested with termites, your relationship cannot stand to built on a foundation that is still infested with the same problems. You must exterminate all problems that caused the breakdown of your relationship and start fresh with a clean foundation.
14. Maintain the changes you are making and make them work for you and your spouse. You can’t just make these changes and adjustments in a relationship and forget about them. Monitor them and the results they are bringing to you daily and modify them when you need to.
15. Strive for change. Many couples go through the healing process, make changes, and the return to their old habits and ways of doing things. They are destined to make the same mistakes that caused the breakdown of their relationship in the first place. You don’t want your relationship to return to the way it was; strive for a new and improved version.
16. Control your stress. Whether it’s at work or at home, make sure that you control your stress and maintain a balance in your moods and reactions to events. Stress is an unhealthy by-product of worry and fear. If you have it under control, it will not control you, your life, your spouse or your relationship. There are many techniques involving exercising that will reduce stress levels dramatically.
17. Be comfortable with who you are. Don’t try to put on a facade that most people will see through and one that will make you miserable. Be true to yourself, who you are, what you believe, and what you are about. Self-discovery is a key in developing and maintaining a strong relationship with your mate.
18. Don’t keep secrets. If you do keep a secret and it eventually is found out, more damage will be done to your relationship building than you can imagine. Secrets eat away at trust and honesty and jeopardize any success of rebuilding that you might have.
19. Demonstrate faith in your relationship and your partner. You will have to encourage your partner and regain trust and the faith that has been compromised. Let them know you believe in them and your relationship; show them that it’s worth the effort to save.
20. Bumps in the road of the rebuilding process are to be expected. Keep all of your discussions and business with each other out in the open. Don’t make mountains out of molehills and be reasonable. Avoid unfair demands on their time, skills, or attitudes about the process taking place.
21. Don’t for get to be courteous in all of your dealings with your spouse. Be open to their suggestions and ideas and relate to them in an encouraging way. Good manners are always in style and by being courteous to your spouse you will show them that you really do care about them.
22. Always do what is right. Even if no one is watching, do what is right for you and your relationship. Give them credit when they deserve it and let them know that you are working on your weaknesses with their help and guidance. Always keep your commitments on your mind.
23. Be aware of improvements in your relationship and discuss them with your partner. As you see progress being made and changes occurring, bring these to the attention of your spouse and make strong, positive comments about how bright the future looks. Keeping progress at the forefront of daily discussions will foster even more progress. Build on these successes and watch them multiply and healing proceed rapidly.
24. Don’t compare yourself to other couples. Some couples seem like they have the perfect relationship but you can rest assured that all couples have their issues. You need to concentrate on your relationship rebuilding efforts and avoid paying attention to the perfect couple next door. Your issues have arisen for a particular reason and your goal should be to address these problems immediately before they worsen.
25. Set aside time for intimacy. Being intimate with your spouse is fulfilling one of your basic needs. It may take some time for this part of the relationship to revive itself, but careful attention to all of the tips above will help to assure you that the commitments that you have made to each other as a couple will once again be honored.
26. Know what your limits are. Building a broken relationship is a task that is hard work and takes a lot of understanding and effort. Sometimes you will need to step back and take a look at the relationship to see how it is improving and changing. This will sharpen your perspective on the methods that are working for you and those that are not. It will enable you to make better modifications that will aid in healing. Listen to your heart and your spouse and try to determine what is best for you as a couple.
Rebuilding a relationship can’t be fixed overnight but with compassion, caring, and consideration of your mate, success is right across that threshold. Learn the best ways to communicate ideas to your mate and commit to doing your share of the workload in the tedious process of regaining trust, honesty, and respect. You will find that repair will come with time and feelings will deepen with true respect. Reaping the benefits of what once made life more meaningful to you will make all the hard work certainly worthwhile. In the process, you will learn more about your spouse and yourself; your relationship will deepen and grow to wonderful heights of love.