Resolve to do this — and forge a deeper connection.
By Katie and Gay Hendricks — Updated on Apr 02, 2023
Photo: Mariia Boiko / Shutterstock
When it comes to making positive changes to improve your relationship (and the way you feel about yourself), you might think you need a laundry list of steps and resolutions.
We disagree. We believe there is really only one essential New Year’s resolution needed to dramatically improve your love life, whether you’re searching for a new partner, or you’re trying to keep love alive with someone you’ve been with for years. Believe it or not, there is one big resolution that will help you stop attracting unhealthy relationships and/or playing out toxic patterns with your partner:
“This year I vow never to accept less than what I really want in my relationship.”
Simple as that. With this resolution, you commit yourself to get clear on what you really want in a relationship and in a partner, and to do whatever it takes to get it.
How to never accept less than what you really want in a relationship
Making this resolution means making a vow that you won’t date people who aren’t worthy of your love, or who don’t treat you the way you deserve. It means no more stuffing down your feelings or trying to “keep the peace” in your relationship when something goes wrong.
It means no more complaining to your friends when your mate upsets you, but doing what it takes to address the issue with him or her directly. It means no more cycles of fighting, feelings of aching loneliness, or heartbreaking relationships in any area of your life (romantic or otherwise).
You will never accept less than what you really want again. What could be better than that, right? Say it aloud now: “This year I vow never to accept less than what I really want in my relationship.”
The moment you declare this one resolution, you make a powerful commitment that automatically sets forces in motion.
How vowing to accept only what you want in a relationship improves your life:
1. It supercharges your self-esteem
Because you’re telling yourself that you’re worthy of a great relationship. You will no longer accept anything less than you deserve.
2. You instantly orient yourself to the kind of relationship you want
It inspires you to get really clear on what’s truly important to you and what you want to create with a partner.
3. Having a clear vision of love and knowing that you are worthy of it helps you make better decisions
You begin to date better matches, communicate your needs, and work through problems. This vow becomes the foundation from which a beautiful relationship can grow.
A deeper commitment to your relationship
It’s time you take responsibility for your happiness — love yourself and your needs completely, and create the relationship you’ve always longed for … not just the one you settled for. This resolution has a built-in, anti-failure strategy.
There’s another important part of this resolution. In fact, it’s just as important as the resolution itself: Recommitment.
Resolutions often don’t work because we declare them one time and then naturally drift from them. We get busy. We feel distracted. We’re human. And, because we’re human, we also do something that is entirely unhelpful: We blame ourselves. We think that when we drift from a resolution, we’ve failed.
And once we think we’ve failed, we give up. And then we quickly resort back to our bad habits and status quo.
Try something new and different
With this New Year’s resolution, you must try something different. Instead of blaming yourself when you drift from your resolution, recommit to the resolution again and keep going.
After all, if you get lost on a drive from Los Angeles to New York, you don’t give up on the trip, do you? Of course not. You get back on the road, with your destination firmly in mind. That’s what recommitment is all about. It’s a powerful way to keep your resolution alive.
When you do that, your relationship landscape looks a whole lot different and the future seems a whole lot brighter.
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Katie and Gay Hendricks are experts who have written over 30 books, trained thousands of coaches, appeared on Oprah, and hosted seminars around the globe.