“Love is patient; love is kind
and envies no one.
Love is never boastful, nor conceited, nor rude; never selfish, not quick to take offense.
There is nothing love cannot face; there is no limit to its faith, its hope, and endurance.
In a word, there are three things that last forever: faith, hope, and love,
but the greatest of them all is love.”
I'm fortunate to have some pretty amazing love in my life and it's something I don't, for a second, take for granted. Not everyone is as lucky as I have been when it comes to love and I truly value the time and energy spent on developing a truly loving relationship. Sadly, when it comes to love, there can be a lot of negativity in there. A few weeks ago at my sister's wedding, I heard that famous Letter to the Corinthians, which I've quoted above. Though I've heard it many times, at many weddings (and, of course, in Wedding Crashers), it struck a particular chord with me recently when I realized how much truth resides in those words.
In order to create a loving and lasting relationship, one must adhere to those principles and focus on them with every passing moment a relationship experiences. As anyone who has been a relationship knows, they aren't all sunshine and rainbows, smiles and happiness. They are hard work sometimes, but I've found that you usually get just about as much as you put into them. If you want to have a strong bond with the one you love, you have to create that bond. And, once you've created it, you have to work on strengthening it all the time. How can you strengthen the bond with the one you love? Here are my suggestions:
Be patient and kind. For whatever reason, people often take out their worst emotions on the ones they love, but one of the best (and most obvious) ways to strengthen a bond with a loved one is to be patient and kind with that person. It can be hard, at times, to remember patience and kindness, but those two elements are essential when it comes to maintaining a close bond with a loved one.
Avoid extreme selfishness. I'm all for the importance of putting yourself first, but, when it comes to making a true and lasting bond with the one you love stick, it's important to avoid extreme selfishness at all costs. Forming a bond has to be a give and take. You must be willing to put others' needs before your own at times if you want to create a bond that will last a lifetime.
Do not be rude or boastful. Again, going back to the first point, for some reason people tend to often be rudest to those they love the most. Maybe people think they can get away with it, but, even if you can, rudeness is a surefire way to put stop to forming a close bond with someone you love. If you want to be close, avoid boasting or treating a loved one rudely.
Be supportive and avoid envy. There will be times in a loving relationship where one person is more successful or happy than the other. This is normal and this is okay. What's not okay is to be envious of your partner. To create a strong and lasting bond, you must be supportive of the one you love and avoid, at all costs, letting envy take over your emotions.
Fill your heart with trust. Many of the biggest issues in many relationships stem from a lack of trust. With all of the various elements life can throw at us, it's not surprising that so many people have issues when it comes to trust. However, if you want to have the best possible bond with the one you love, you must let go of mistrust and open your heart to full and complete trust of one another.
Believe in the power of love. It might sound completely cheesy, but there's a lot of power behind love between two people. It can overcome a great deal -- probably much more than you'd imagine. Love will overcome any negativity -- if you believe in it. To create a strong bond, you have to believe in the love you share and you have to know that, with it, you can deal with all kinds of difficult situations.
I'm really good at doing some of these and, when it comes to others, I could use a little more work and effort on my part. Overall, I know if I focus on cultivating appreciation, gratitude, and respect in my relationship that those things will ultimately lead to a lasting and worthwhile love. So often people find themselves swept up by romance at the beginning of a relationship only to let things fizzle and fade once they grow more comfortable with one another. Often people take it one step further and grow to dislike one another, becoming angry and jealous for little or no reason. It is unfortunate that so many great loves end up turning sour, leaving one or both partners disappointed and unhappy. Many people believe that the initial spark they once felt for another will magically return, but that's not realistic. Real love takes real work and all of the effort one puts into celebrating and working on love is worth it to know that a bond can become unbreakable.
How do YOU create a bond with the one you love?
What are some things you've done to keep your love strong?