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Relationship advice to help balance work and datingDating All Hours - Relationship Advice

Relationships can give you something which nothing else can although at the same time relationships can be hard to master with ups and downs. If you work a irregular hours, long hours or work a shift pattern you can find it hard to balance relationships with work due to the time constraints that your working hours impose on you.

There is a lot of good information, advice and tips on the internet about relationship advice, although this articles aims more to focus more on suggestions to improve how we balance our working hours and times with a relationship.

Making time for one another

It is important that the time we put aside to spend with one another in a relationship isquality time. It could be said that there is no point putting time aside for one another and then not enjoying your time together!

You could both make a list of things you really like, your favourites things and activities and then try and do them together, whether it be cooking your favourite meal to going for a walk in the countryside to watching a film a cinema that you have been meaning to see for a while. The great thing about this is you learn more about what each other like. It can also be surprising to realise that you may also learn more about yourself and what you like, and rather than coming to the end of your time off work, your downtime, having not really done much, instead you've done something you really like and spent time together. For example when I had a really good think on the train to work about what I like, I remembered I enjoyed having a walk along the River Thames in London, on a nice cold, blue sky day and then maybe having a cup of hot soup or going for a drink in a local pub. When I realised I really enjoyed this I made sure we made time for it, I enjoyed it even more, I relaxed more, we had a great time and I felt ready to go back to work the next day. It can really be the simple things which are easy to do and which can be the best.

However if both you and your boyfriend or girlfriend are busy and work long hours it can be really difficult to find time to go and do those enjoyable things when you know you've got other things you must get done on your day off, for example housework chores and tasks. Although you may have to be strict with yourselves to get in the habit at first, it can help to get the perhaps not so pleasant tasks done first and then you can more easily completely enjoy whatever else you actually want to go do on your time off, without thoughts in the back of your mind of the other things on your "to do" list which need doing. It can also help to find ways to more enjoy the household chores, for example, putting a bit of music on, while you split the tasks between yourselves and maybe stop for the odd chat in between. You may actually find you talk more and get more "off your chest" from chatting like this, because as you're doing the chores your mind can wander and then something comes into your my mind that you wanted to chat to your girlfriend or boyfriend about and then 'Oh yeah at work the other day......' or 'I got really annoyed the other day because....' for example.

Communication skills

Communication can be one of the most important things in a relationship and can make a massive difference to a relationship. Problems can come in varying forms including not listening to one another, not being able to express yourself and to getting the wrong idea.

Talking over one another and interrupting one another can cause problems to the flow of information and cause frustration. I don't have a good memory so I can sometimes interupt people because I want to say my thoughts before I forget them! This is especially difficult after a long day at work as you're probably quite tired. So now I try and write them down (although not always feasible) and then additionally I can listen more to what my partner is saying instead of trying to remember what it was I wanted to say!

Do you know what you want? Sometimes you know there is something that has annoyed you about your partner but you cannot quite figure it out or justify it by remebering an example of when it has happened. It may be that you are more tend to remember the emotions it conjured up and that you didn't like it. It can help that after continuing to talk about it the reasons it annoyed you do tend to become apparent, although it's not an exact science.

Understanding each other's priorities

Your priorities and the priorities of your partner may differ. For example your priority may involve getting out of the house and doing something, whereas your partner may prefer to relax and watch TV! The important thing is to remember that we all like to do different things with our spare time. Try and figure out how much spare time you have together and apart and plan accordingly.

If you both work irregular hours or work a shift pattern or long hours, you may have more time to yourself than you would otherwise like. I think meal times are one of the most important times to try and make sure you spend with your partner. It may help if one person could leave just half an hour later and the other return back from work half an hour earlier? This may be a little unrealistic for people that work irregular hours or a shift, but if it is possible for you to be able to organise this once a week it can make a real difference for your relationship to have quality time together.

Relationships are difficult!

A common phrase about relationships can be "I don't want to work at the relationship, I just want it to work" or "The relationship shouldn't be this difficult"; it can be a real difficult balance to strike. Working long or varied hours can be difficult to balance with a relationship nevermind the relationship itself being hard to maintain. There may be no right answer for this. It may be worthwhile to consider how much do you actually like your partner, what do you want out of your relationship and think about what makes you most happy? These can be really difficult questions to ask yourself and then answer although at the end of the day you and you alone have to make the decision.

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