Are you turning your partner off without even knowing it? If you want to remain in your relationship for the long haul, you’ll need to do your best to make sure you’re not engaging in behaviors that may be sabotaging your chances for success. Just because you’re in a long-term, committed relationship doesn’t mean you can now do whatever you want and it will be fine. You still have to watch your behavior and make sure to keep the passion alive by treating each other as well as you did when you first met. Here are 10 of the biggest turn-offs for your partner.
1. Lacking a sense of humor
Don’t take yourself too seriously. A sense of humor is not only attractive but also helps strengthen your relationship. Laughter can help relieve tension and bond a couple together. In a study on relationship deal-breakers published in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, participants agreed that lacking a sense of humor was a big turn-off.
Openly disrespecting your partner is one of the quickest ways to turn him or her off. For men, especially, respect makes them feel loved and valued. Relationship expert Dr. Emerson Eggerichs, author of Love & Respect, says both men and women have a need for respect and love, but men tend to react differently when they do not feel respected.
Also show respect by not leering at that attractive waiter or waitress at the restaurant. Sure, you’ll see attractive people from time to time, but resist the urge to ogle someone in front of your partner.
3. Being secretive
Keeping secrets can be just as bad as lying (some say it’s the same as lying, but we’ll let you decide). Acting overly mysterious will only serve to form a wedge between you and your partner. If you feel you have to keep secrets from your partner, it’s time to decide whether it still makes sense for you to be in the relationship.
Lying is a major don’t when it comes to relationships. If you can’t be open and honest with each other, you are lacking a basic building block for a successful relationship. Although there is no relationship where there is full disclosure at all times, it is still a good idea to be as truthful as possible.
Psychologist Ellyn Bader says lying usually leads to a vicious cycle of more lies. “Lies between lovers have a tremendous potential to both nurture and destroy a relationship. Unfortunately, lies usually undermine a relationship because, when unchecked by compassion and honest introspection, they tend to feed on each other,” Bader writes in the book Tell Me No Lies.
Relationships must involve a bit of give and take. One partner should not be doing all or most of the giving while the other sits back and receives. Remember, the relationship is not all about you. There are two people who both deserve love and care.
6. Constant arguing
Are you always in a bad mood and looking for a fight? This could be what causes your partner to eventually pull away from you for good. Look for constructive ways to settle your differences. You can start by improving your listening skills and not letting the argument continue to escalate.
Lack of ambition is a relationship killer. If you don’t have a clear plan for you life, get one. Being lazy is the second-biggest relationship deal breaker, according to a study conducted by biological anthropologist Dr. Helen Fisher and Dr. Justin R. Garcia, an assistant professor for gender studies. Roughly 59.6% of men and 72.1% of women do not appreciate someone without ambition.
8. Taking your partner for granted
Once you’ve been in a relationship for a long time, there is sometimes a tendency to take each other for granted. You may reason he or she already knows you care, so you may not say the words “I love you” often, or at all. However, regularly ignoring your partner’s needs can eventually lead to strain and eventually a relationship breakdown. Psychologist John Gottman investigated the impact of exchanges within a relationship.
He asserts these exchanges, which he calls bids, can more accurately predict the success or failure of a relationship than arguments. Gottman says these exchanges are emotional signals and the way you react to a bid or signal can determine whether your relationship will last. You can either bid positively, negatively, or in a neutral manner (what Gottman refers to as bidding toward, against, or turning away). The more often couples chose to bid toward, the less likely they were to break up.
The way you keep your house says a lot about you. No one wants to live in chaos. Your partner should be able to come back to a clean, orderly home. The same goes for your appearance. Roughly 71% of women and 63% of men agree that a messy appearance is not desirable. So make sure to keep your home and your appearance neat.
10. Poor hygiene
Make an effort to take care of your body. Keep your nails, hair, and body clean and fresh at all times. No one wants to get intimate with someone who smells and does not look good. Show respect for yourself and your partner by practicing proper hygiene.
On the other hand, be careful not to do certain grooming rituals while your partner is present. Don’t get so comfortable with your partner that you start acting more like friends than lovers. Resist the urge to clip your toenails or shave your private bits in front of your partner. Sometimes a little mystery is necessary. You don’t have to share every experience together.
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