By: Rusty Nail
Many of us spend our time looking for or wanting a significant other in our lives without giving much thought into what a significant other truly is or what it means to us. Although the title of this article is from a guy’s point of view, it can be applied to both sexes. So to get started we first need to define what a relationship is.
Actually that last sentence is misleading because relationships are different from person to person. It’s a matter of finding someone that shares the same outlook as you on what a relationship consists of, and that can vary from person to person. However; one constant theme is frequency of involvement in fact the Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines Girlfriend as “a frequent or regular female companion in a romantic or sexual relationship.”
So what happens when the frequency reduces or is pretty much non-existent? Does this open up room for mistrust or for others to move in? Obviously if the frequency of seeing your significant other is reducing then there must be problems in the relationship that needs to be addressed along with communication. Perhaps it’s time to talk and reevaluate what a relationship is to the both of you. Here are some tips to being a good girlfriend; again some of this can apply to men as well.
While being honest to your guy is very important, to the point of being paramount, it is equally important that you are honest with yourself. If you overreact or make a mistake, you can acknowledge your error and apologize. If you’re feeling vulnerable or upset, you can sort through your feelings and verbalize them to him in a non-accusing way.
- And the most important thing here is that you will be open about your feelings as much as possible. For example, if he does or says something that bothers you, be open about how it impacts you, without being accusing or asking him to change.
- If you establish solid lines of communication from the outset, you’ll know sooner rather than later whether this relationship will endure or fizzle out.
TAKE AN INTEREST IN HIS INTEREST
Remember what he likes to do and what he likes to talk about. You don’t have to act like you love his hobbies, but at least try to understand why he’s such a fan. If he loves a band, try to understand why. If he just loves to be playful and immature, remember that it might just be his way of releasing stress. In learning to accept his unique way of being, you’ll also be learning more about yourself and ultimately whether you could see yourself spending the rest of your life with this person.
- You don’t have to take an interest in all of his interests. If he loves watching baseball but you just can’t get into it, that’s fine, too.
- Just asking about his interests and talking about the things that matter to him can be enough.
LEARN TO WORK AS A TEAM
As in any healthy relationship, you’ll experience your share of conflicts, some tiny, some big. Remember to be true to yourself and try to abandon any significant selfishness. A relationship is a matter of teamwork and a symbiotic relationship, not a parasitic one, where a party gives and the other one just takes without giving enough back. In a team, you have each other’s back, you don’t undermine one another and you openly cherish each other in front of others.
- In times of hardship, a team approach can help you to work through problems in a less emotionally attached way, in that both of you assume responsibilities for fixing things rather than expecting one or the other to fix things.
- Avoid having a “one track” relationship in which the bond revolves around one thing. Keep your relationship strong by bringing variety and diversity into the relationship. Try different and new things together. Relationships are about having fun together, learning together and growing together.
COMPLIMENT HIM MORE THAN YOU CRITICIZE HIM
If everything you say around him is a criticism or an attack, he won’t look forward to seeing you and he’ll start reconsidering being with you. All the same, you don’t always have to agree with him just because he is your boyfriend. Tactfulness is a better strategy in mature relationships and establishing boundaries and making compromises are important relationship strategies to learn and adopt.
- Though you can bring up a valid criticism when it feels right, you should say at least four positive things about him for every negative thing you say.
- Don’t nag him just because you’re in a bad mood or things aren’t going perfectly.
LEARN TO COMPROMISE
If you want to be a good girlfriend, then you have to learn to compromise instead of fighting or being angry the second you don’t get your way. To compromise well, you both have to be able to calmly and rationally discuss a situation while understanding the other person’s perspective. Try to understand where your boyfriend is coming from instead of blindly focusing on what you think you need.
- You don’t want to be that girl who always gets her way just because your boyfriend would rather give in than stand his ground because you get so angry and upset whenever things don’t go your way.
There are various ways to show your affection; some are more obvious than others and the way you approach this will depend on how openly affectionate you like to be personally. Affection is close to but not the same as intimacy––affection is about openly displaying that you care about this person and can be shown any time of day or night, publicly or privately. Think about how you like to show affection to people you care about, such as holding hands, touching an arm, quick kisses on the cheek, a hug, stroking hair, supportive words, mentioning how great someone is in front of other people, etc.
- Men sometimes like it when a girl gives them a pet name like “Baby” or “Sweetheart.” Try not to overdo this, however. It can be a major turn-off if you call them “Mr. Cuddle-Bear”, especially in public. Of all things, good communication is the vital part of any relationship, so make sure that he knows how much you like him.
- Regular lovey-dovey texts and emails can be a plus, but too many will become overwhelming and you may seem clingy. These types of things do show you’re into him, and you want it to last forever, but don’t come on so much that you scare him!
GIVE HIM GIFTS
When you’re in a relationship, it’s fun to give each other small gifts. Guys love to get presents and giving him one shows that he means a lot to you. Don’t overdo it — just give him a gift when you’re feeling loving and want to let him know how much he means to you. You don’t want him to think you’re trying to buy his affection.
- Make him something. A paper flower, an artsy heart, something creative that reflects your personality, so that whenever he looks at it, he’ll think of you and smile. If you’re the musical type, or play an instrument, feel free to play him a song or two (bonus points if you play a song you wrote yourself). Add a private video of your song to YouTube.
DON’T GET JEALOUS
You should be loving, but not to the point where you start seeing red the second your boyfriend talks to, or even just mentions, another girl. Nothing will turn your boyfriend off faster than a girlfriend who is so insecure that she can’t stand the thought of other women existing in the universe. Your boyfriend will appreciate you even more if you’re nice to his female friends instead of talking about how ugly or annoying any girl you see is.
- If he’s out with his friends, don’t text him every two seconds to make sure he’s not talking to other girls. This will only make him see how little you trust him.
This is just a glimpse into what a relationship from a man’s point of view looks like and not at all a complete list. It’s paramount to always value the other person and make them feel important, needed, respected, and loved and when a problem arises the two of you should always handle it behind closed doors and never air your dirty laundry in public places like Facebook or Google+. A man likes to feel like a man and there are ways to do that without compromising your values and position as a women and girlfriend.
A man likes to feel like you’re his girl and there isn’t anyone else that can come between the two of you, this can be done without being clingy. There have been women in my life that when walking into a crowded nightclub every person in the club knows she is with me by the aura and vibe she puts out even if she is socializing across the room from me. Flirting can cause disaster in a relationship unless it’s with each other so make sure that both of you lay down rules as to what you consider flirting compared to socializing. Again this all goes back to communication and letting one another know what you consider a relationship and what you need from your partner in order to be happy.