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The turn of the year is always a good time for reflecting and re-establishing the bonds that created your partnership in the first place. If you decide to make New Year’s resolutions or deliberate decisions about the other areas of your life, make the decision to do the same with your relationships. Here are a few to consider in this brand new year.

Decision #1: I will forgive and move on. Probably one of the most important resolutions you can make, forgiveness is a process that cannot be completed overnight, but it is a necessary one. Challenges and offences are inevitable in relationships so the best way to build and keep a strong relationship is to commit to forgiving and letting go of past hurt. Forgiveness is a great sign of maturity and it will set a good tone for love in your relationship.

Decision #2: I will prioritize my relationship. Life happens. You will be inundated with career, family, and other responsibilities so taking the time to keep your relationship a priority is key. Checking in during the day, planning dates and outings, and doing things that matter most are excellent ways to improve and strengthen your relationship.

Decision #3: I will digitally detox on a daily basis. Your social (media) relationships are NOT more important than your intimate ones. Agree to a window of time where you can connect with each other with no distractions or interruptions from your phones, email, and social media. This will communicate that your significant other comes first and everything else comes second.

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Your social (media) relationships are NOT more important than your intimate ones.

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Decision #4: I will be intentional about dating. Scheduling regular date nights shows that you are making an effort to continue the romance and excitement in your relationship. Take turns planning a date – weekly or monthly – and make it special. If you are not yet in a relationship, make an effort to get out there and attract the right person for you! If you’re already married, who says you can’t still date? Your spouse, of course!

Decision #5: I will be more playful and have more fun! When was the last time you had a pillow fight? Or went to an amusement park? Bring back the lightheartedness of your relationship and enjoy some fun activities that you’ve been neglecting. Committing to have more fun could mean more overall satisfaction for you.

Decision #6: I will invest in myself and my well-being. Bringing your complete, healthy self to your relationship could be all the improvement that is necessary. This could mean having some alone time to replenish your energy or even eating healthily and enrolling in a yoga class. When you are at your best, you will bring your best to your relationship and make it even better.

Decision #7: I will be more intimate and have MORE sex! Being physically intimate elicits feelings of desire and affection and is a surefire way to strengthening the bond in a relationship. If sex was not a priority this past year, commit to making it one in the new year. This may not sound romantic but set sex goals. Schedule sex, if necessary! But most of all, enjoy it with the one you love.

Decision #8: I will manage my expectations. Many of our disappointments in relationships come from unrealistic and unmet expectations. There is nothing wrong with setting high goals, but make sure they are reasonable. Sticking to attainable expectations will reduce the stress you put on your relationship and will foster an environment of peace and understanding.

To help you continue with making deliberate decisions in your relationships, download my FREE must-have resource guide for better relationships! Good luck!

This article was adapted and featured on MarthaStewartWeddings.com. Check it out here!

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