A happy, committed, functional relationship requires time and effort. You have to take the time to understand who your girlfriend is as a person and make the effort to be present in the relationship so you both can be happy as a couple. According to the article “How Love Affects Your Health,” a woman in the company of a man she adores will feel happy, triggering the release of various hormones in her body, increasing her appetite, and doing all sorts of good things for the body and mind. You can elicit this reaction in your girlfriend one good deed at a time.
Listen. Choose to listen to her feelings during moments of conflict instead of waiting for an opportunity to prove a point or win an argument. Be willing to make the changes she requests when necessary and appropriate. When she's talking, nod and give feedback to let her know that you're listening. Allow her the chance to talk about her thoughts and feelings without judgment. When you listen to her, she's more likely to listen to you in the future.
Cook dinner for your girlfriend. Instead of going to a popular restaurant, stay home and cook a simple spaghetti or ravioli dinner. Add herbs and spices for taste and pop open a bottle of white wine for added measure. If you're unsure what to cook, ask about her favorite foods. You could also look up recipes or take a cooking class if your skills are a little rusty.
Introduce your girlfriend to new activities that she has expressed an interest in or a willingness to try. Plan a weekend excursion to a local camp ground or sign up for dance classes. Your girlfriend will appreciate the initiative. When you take the time to help her experience new things, she knows that you listen to her and that you value the things she wants to do in her life.
Pay attention to what interests your girlfriend and support those activities. If your girlfriend is an avid diver, surprise her with a therapeutic massage after a long day in the water. No matter what the activity is, show that you support her involvement and, if possible, give her gifts that relate to that activity. You can even join in with her and potentially learn a new skill when you work on crafts or hobbies together.
Maintain a friendly and respectful relationship with her friends and family. Invite her friends and family over for game night or host a pool party for everyone to socialize and mingle. She will enjoy being able to spend time with you as well as her loved ones. Women appreciate their many relationships, so you maintaining a good relationship with the people she cares about shows her that you're invested in her happiness in different ways.
Apologize. When you own up to your mistakes, she knows that you're invested in the relationship. Being humble enough to admit when you are wrong is a sign of respect. She will appreciate you being willing to talk about things like hurting her feelings and taking responsibility for your actions.
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- girl in black image by Robert Calvillo from Fotolia.com