I was talking to one of my clients this morning about how to manage long-distance relationship communication. It’s a challenging topic because communication is really the pillar of a healthy relationship, and when two people are not physically in the same place very often, it can cause tensions between them. Fortunately, we do live in a time where technology has made it possible to be in touch with people all around the world literally at all times.
Long-distance relationships were not as common in the past as they are now simply because it was much harder to maintain them. So now that we have all these means of communication at our fingertips, what’s the best way to ensure that you are communicating with your long-distance partner in the best way?
What’s the best way to use communication to reinforce and strengthen your relationship?
I wanted to write this article for you today to explain how to strike a healthy balance in your long-distance relationship with the one you love, what kinds of tools and techniques you can use, and what kind of gestures can make your partner feel your presence even when you’re not physically there with them!
Long distance relationship communication problems: How to minimize them
If the person you love proposes doing long-distance with you, it’s true that it can be a tricky situation. You will find yourself missing this person with all your heart, you’ll wish that they could be there to partake in special moments either alone or with the people you love like your friends and family…
And you will inevitably feel like there is a big part of your life that is missing when he or she isn’t around.
By the same token, you really want to be a part of his or her life too. You want to know what their days consist of, you want to be able to partake in the little things as well. So needless to say, long-distance relationships can be extremely challenging and they require a lot of confidence and a solid sense of well being.
And you know what the tool for making your relationship survive long-distance is? You guessed it: Communication.
That being said, it can be very hard to figure out what’s normal, what isn’t, where the boundaries should lie, and how to handle this type of relationship.
A lot of people come to me asking about how to handle long-distance so that they can still feel close to their partner, even when they’re not physically together while ensuring that the relationship doesn’t begin to feel like a burden…
The solutions for communication in long distance relationships
The truth is that it’s different for everyone. Every person is going to have different long-distance communication needs, every single one of us has different needs and expectations in a relationship…
So it’s crucial that you lay out the ground rules together, and I’m going to help you to do just that in this article. It’s not about getting into the details and nitpicking every little thing, but it will be essential that you both convey to each other what your needs are.
Make sure you go over what your pet peeves are, what your basic needs in a relationship are, and really be careful to make sure that both of you feel heard. Hence the importance of communication in a long distance relationship.
Communication in long distance relationship: The most common mistake
When you are unable to spend time with someone face to face, it’s easy to start to develop a sense of insecurity that leads you to seek constant reassurance. This is probably the most common mistake that I see in long distance couples.
People will begin to act needy and clingy, they’ll stop being themselves, all because they want to talk to their significant other all the time to feed this constant need for reassurance. It’s a very human reaction, but it’s something that you need to be very careful with because it can undermine your relationship.
So I encourage you to avoid being too overwhelming or seeking to talk all the time or every single day. When you do this, you begin to let your insecurities or need for validation begin to take over, and your partner can sense it even if they’re thousands of miles away.
The key to protecting against this type of thing is to make a valiant effort to remain busy in your own life. When people start to set their own passions and goals aside because they’re fixated on being in touch with their long distance boyfriend or girlfriend all the time, we start to see issues arise. You need to be able to live your own life in order for your relationship to thrive.
What’s more, the busier you are, the easier it is for you to keep your mind occupied and maintain a sense of independence. Which by the way is a very attractive trait in a partner that can keep your partner craving more and more of your attention!
Long distance relationship without communication will not work
There are some pros to being in a long distance relationship that a lot of people don’t think about, like the fact that you don’t have to deal with the little things that your partner does that might get on your nerves day after day, and it gives you a pretty amazing opportunity to continue to focus on your life and flourish.
So I encourage you to see this situation as an opportunity instead of a burden that has been placed on you and the one you love. You can really allow the relationship to develop organically while you continue to cultivate your own sense of well being in your life, work towards your personal and professional goals, and maintain a rich social life. People who get into relationships often end up trying to spend all their free time with their significant others, and the result is that they lose track of who they are.
And this is exactly what undermines relationships the most.
So when you talk, make sure that you connect on a deeper level. You’re not just checking in because it’s routine; you have plenty of interesting things to share because you’ve been doing all kinds of interesting things these days.
Again, you can make this whole situation into an incredible opportunity to develop a deeply fulfilling relationship!
Long distance relationships: Make an effort!
I know I’ve been talking about the importance of not being overbearing or suffocating your partner, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be making an effort to be in contact.
One of the best things you can do is to make sure that you devote some time to video calling each other whenever possible. Having that visual connection can really close the gap and make you feel much closer. If you can’t do that very often, try to send each other voice notes.
When you can see your partner and hear his or her voice, you’ll see that the distance doesn’t seem quite so far and you two can connect much more easily.
It’s going to be very important to seek to learn about your partner and their lives so that you two can connect and share.
In addition to that, seeing and hearing each other can help you to build up the sexual tension and make you even more excited about the next time you two will be able to meet.
Make sure you have an end in sight
One of the most important things I can share with you is the importance of having an end goal in sight. Long distance relationships can work, especially when the communication is solid, but you can’t spend the entirety of your relationship separately.
If you two can develop your relationship and have an end goal in sight, it’s going to help you to get through the portion of your relationship where you are physically apart, and if you’re both working towards the same thing, it will help you to grow closer as a couple as well.
In the meantime, make sure that you’re both planning trips to see each other whenever it’s possible. I know that for some of you, the distances are greater so this can be a challenge, but just do what you can. It’s important for both people in the relationship to feel that the other is making an effort to see them. Again, this is something that strengthens your bond.
Small gestures can go a long way…
You can go out of your way to do things for your partner that makes him or her feel very present in your mind. One of my favorite options is sending a care package. Maybe there are products that your partner loves that are available in your city but not in theirs, you could add something special that you know they would like, you could even write them a little handwritten letter to let them know you’ve been thinking about them and wanted to send a couple little gifts.
Everyone loves receiving special gifts, especially when they aren’t expecting it. I would encourage you to not do this too often however, because you don’t want the gift to lose its charm.
Fixing long distance relationship communication problems once and for all
What it all really boils down to is making sure that you can find the sweet spot between making your partner feel that you are present in the relationship, being clear about both of your needs and expectations, while still actively working on developing your own life in a way that makes you deeply happy. Your sense of well-being will play into your relationship, reinforce your self confidence, protect you from making common mistakes like becoming insecure and doing things that make your ex feel suffocated.
When you’re in a LDR, always remember to turn it into an opportunity instead of something that stresses you out. Make sure you connect on a deeper level and not just talk to talk. You want to ensure that you’re having meaningful conversations that inspire both of you. Ideally, these conversations should be made via video calls so that you can really see each other.
Another important thing to mention is that the sexual element of your relationship should not be neglected. You’re in a romantic relationship together so you’ll need to keep things exciting! You aren’t just pen pals here, so go out of your way to build up sexual tension in whatever way feels exiting for both of you.
Make sure you plan visits to see each other whenever possible, and I highly encourage you to have an end goal in sight. I know that there are exceptions to the rule, but in 99% of cases, long distance relationships are not sustainable forever. In order to build an even stronger relationship, you’ll have to ultimately be in the same place as each other. If you don’t have an end goal of living in the same place in sight, it can take a serious toll on the relationship, and this is when I see people start to fatigue and want to give up.
I know that these situations can be confusing because every relationship is unique, but don’t forget that we are here to help. If you’re feeling insecure, I encourage you to download our brand new product on battling insecurity. To access it, all you have to do is click here.
Join the Happily Committed Project and learn how to transform your relationship in a meaningful and dignified way. If you would like to work with me or a member of my team, all you have to do is click here.
We can work with you to create a personalized action plan to help catapult you towards your goals and a towards a future that is filled with joy.
I sincerely wish you all the very best in life and love,
Your coach when you’re thinking about long distance relationship communication