Before you call out your friends who are poor at time management and balancing their relationships, double-check that this doesn’t apply to you, too. When we’re the ones in the relationship, we like to assume that we are excellent at the balancing act between friends, family, and the significant other. Yet when it’s one of our friends, we can go on and on about all the times they’ve failed at doing so. The fact of the matter is that in new relationships, it can be pretty tough to split your time equally. Even when you think you are, there’s always someone who is unhappy. When you feel like you’re falling short, take some of these steps into account to see how you can turn things around.
Find Time for Just You
Because a new relationship is all about excitement and learning about one another, it can be hard not to want to spend every waking moment with them. Many times when you get into a new relationship, you feel the need to dedicate so much of your time to that one person. But whether it be out of some kind of romantic gesture or utter need to prove how much you like someone, it can be draining and unhealthy for everyone involved. Once you start planning your life around someone else’s, you start to become overly dependent on them, losing a part of yourself. You’re an individual, and it’s not only okay but necessary to make time for yourself in a relationship. At the end of the day, the most important relationship is the one you have with yourself; and if that one is failing to stand up, the others are likely to come falling down too.
Take yourself out for a walk. Kick a soccer ball. Find a good book or snuggle up on the couch with a furry friend. The best part is that you’re the only one you have to negotiate with, so you can do whatever you want! Most importantly, this “you” time is made so you have time to reflect. Whether it be writing in a journal, meditating, or even talking to mom on the phone, give yourself the chance to focus on yourself and your own goals.
Commit to Your Plans
Balancing your relationship with your friendships can be especially tricky if you’re prone to flaking on plans. To avoid the same bothersome conversation over and over again, make a schedule, and stick to it. This does not mean that your friends are reserved from 10-2 and your S.O. gets the 2-10 shift. Rather, when you make a plan, fully commit. Don’t allow yourself to back out of a plan because your S.O.’s night just opened up. Schedule it knowing that you are going no matter who becomes suddenly available. Not only will it make you more reliable and trustworthy, but you’ll feel better knowing that there’s at least an outline for you to follow.
Just like you learned at a young age how important it is to talk to your parents, it’s just as key when maintaining good relationships. When all else fails, talking it out is ALWAYS the solution. It’s much easier to address an issue when both parties can maturely discuss it and solve it on their own. Plus, it leaves no room for either of you to make assumptions. Instead of constantly guessing if what you did was good or bad, going right to the source (whether it be your S.O. or friend) is guaranteed to nip it right in the bud and relieve pressure. Being clear about your feelings and where you stand will allow communication to flow naturally as you learn how to listen/respond to one another; as a result, stress will be a thing of the past.
No More Stress
While it can be good to invest yourself in your relationship, you don’t need to invest every part of you. Above all, balancing all the relationships in your life takes work; but recognizing that each relationship requires different needs helps in keeping them strong. First, prioritizing the relationship you have with yourself will help you recognize your own self-worth and independence. Second, sticking to plans that you’ve made with others reassures them that you care about your relationship with them. Finally, communicating with everyone in your life will make it that much easier for you to know that both you and the other person are always being heard. It’s not always easy balancing relationships, but putting in the effort to do so will pay off in the long run.