Are you distracted when you’re spending time with your partner? Are you guilty of mindlessly scrolling through your phone while they’re telling you about their day? Although you’re nodding and physically in the same space as your significant other, you’re sending them signals that you’re not engaged with what they’re saying. This makes them question your commitment to the relationship and, over time, can cause major resentment.

Many people believe that as long as they’re spending time with their romantic partner they’re making their relationship a priority. But there’s a tremendous difference between physically being in the same room with your significant other and actually making yourself emotionally and mentally available to them. You need to be completely present and adapt the firewalk mentality. By learning to be present, you will cultivate a happier and more fulfilled relationship.

Put your partner first

Your relationship won’t succeed unless you put your partner first. The best way to start is by thinking about all the great qualities your partner possesses. What attracted you to them in the first place? As Tony Robbins says, “Do what you did in the beginning of the relationship and there won’t be an end.” Notice and appreciate all the little things that made you fall in love. Compliment them. Tell them what it is about them that makes you proud. By drawing your attention back to your partner’s positive traits, you’ll be more anchored to the present moment and less likely to start a pointless argument or let your mind wander. When you learn to appreciate all the amazing things your partner brings to the table, you’ll also feel more confident in the relationship, and they’ll feel more valued.

Identify negative patterns

Do you check out every time your partner starts talking about work? Do you find yourself distracted when your significant other is asking you about your day? Identify the moments when you’re not present in your relationship — is there a pattern? You might have fallen into a bad habit, but that doesn’t mean you’re doomed to be distracted forever. Focus on being present instead. The next time your partner starts talking about work and you feel you’re going to drift off, change your approach. Is there a way you can feel more focused on what they’re saying? Can you change your response by altering your perception of their words or your responsive actions? Interrupt the pattern in a fun and effective way. Your partner will appreciate the extra effort and you’ll feel more connected to them, too.

Offer your undivided attention

Part of being present is being an effective communicator. This doesn’t mean talking as much as you want — it means finding a way to actually listen to your lover. Deep listening is a transformative tool that will help you truly engage with your partner. It’s about not only soaking in everything your loved one is saying, but listening in a way that makes them feel open to being vulnerable and honest with you. This will increase intimacy and build trust in your relationship.

There are four key components of deep listening that will enable you to be more present: maintaining eye contact, providing nonverbal feedback, using body language to establish a connection and focusing your mind on the conversation at hand.

Let go of the past

You want to build a future together, but you’re stuck on the past. It’s time to forgive, forget and move on. Why continue bringing up painful things? Learn to live in the present moment instead of dwelling on past mistakes. Decide that it’s more important to be in love than to be right about past grievances. When confrontation does arise, make it a point to communicate openly with your partner in the moment. Rather than retreat when you’re having an issue, face the conflict head on. Once you’ve reached a solution you’re both happy with, forgive each other and let it go.

Embrace the firewalk mentality

You can practice being present over time. But there are some events in life that teach you how to be present in an instant, such as the Tony Robbins firewalk. Walking over a bed of hot coals sounds impossible at first, but once you commit and realize that you cannot fail if you’re fully present, you will succeed. This mindset can be taken from the event and applied to your relationship as well.

Firewalkers learn that anything is possible if they clear their minds and focus on the task at hand. When you’re in love, being present is the best way to handle any issues that come up in your relationship. You learn that you have to be there for your partner physically, emotionally and mentally; otherwise, your relationship will fail. Attend the firewalk solo to work on being present for your partner, or go with your lover so you can both learn how to live in the moment from this incredible experience.

If you’re not present, then you’re not getting the most out of your relationship — and neither is your partner. “The quality of your life is the quality of your relationships,” says Tony Robbins. Are you ready to improve the quality of your relationship? Are you eager to feel fulfilled? Focus on being present today and attend an upcoming firewalk via the next Unleash the Power Within event near you. When you’re able to be present with your partner, your relationship will change for the better.

Image credit © Ryan Holloway/Unsplash

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