The Benefits Of Spending Time Apart In Relationships
Having a healthy relationship doesn’t mean two people must spend all their time together.
Tom Cruise didn’t have it right in the 1996 movie “Jerry Maguire” when he told Renée Zellweger’s character she completes him. The idea of two people becoming one whole is utter nonsense when it comes to creating and maintaining a functional romantic union. You aren’t just a part of a person who needs to be completed by another.
Some of the longest and happiest relationships aren’t where people have everything in common, from food preferences to hobbies and favorite movies, but instead they share values.
This speaks to the fact that spending time apart in relationships is a good thing. Here are three reasons why:
Staying Connected With Yourself
In the early stage of a relationship, all you and your love interest may want to do is spent time together. Don’t deny yourselves that, but remember you are two separate individuals.
It is who you are that attracted your partner to you, and losing sight of that uniqueness and distinctiveness won’t aid the relationship – it will hamper it. That’s why it’s important to stay in touch with your thoughts, feelings, goals and dreams through solo time.
Spending time apart in relationships allows significant others to listen to their inner self. Having a clear understanding of their own needs and desires won’t detract from the relationship. Instead, it will make it more authentic because both people are clear on the true vision for themselves.
Before just taking solo time, it’s important to articulate why alone time is so vital to an individual as well as a couple.
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Providing a Chance to Miss Each Other
It’s not just a cliché – absence really does make the heart grow fonder. A study found that spending time apart in relationships increases intimacy.
When you aren’t around the other person, you are able to gain perspective on your connection, what they mean to you and appreciate what they bring to your life.
Without absence, it is hard to miss a person and to know what life would be like without them. Absence creates an opportunity to recognize what your loved one adds to your life and what would be missing without them.
Maintaining Other Important Relationships
Our lives are ecosystems with many people, places and things in it. Like any ecosystem, there needs to be balance between multiple elements to create a healthy and happy existence for all.
Consequently, if your life becomes solely focused on the maintenance of a single relationship, the richness of your ecosystem will be diminished. Humans are social creatures and need various connections to be at our happiest, regardless of whether we’re introverts or extroverts.
Devoting time to cultivate and nurture friendships and family relations with others in a couple’s individual lives will ensure balance for both partners. Spending time apart in relationships allows other connections to flourish and feed back into the couple.
It will also prevent unnecessary pressure on a relationship, as stress, challenges and crises can be faced with the support of a network of people instead on relying on a single person to solve a problem or boost a mood.
Plus, putting the shoe on the other foot, it is a real drag when you’ve been ditched because your friend has a new love interest. Don’t return that favor. Instead treat your friend the way you want to be treated.
There isn’t anything wrong with needing and wanting time away from your significant other. It shows there is trust and respect between you. You are both capable, healthy adults who are individuals that enrich one another’s lives, but aren’t their whole lives.
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