Being in a long distance relationship (ldr) can be one of the most difficult and trying times between two people. From living in different time zones, having careers with completely different daily schedules and spending hundreds of dollars on flights and trips to visit each other, it’s a ton of work! Luckily, if you aren’t afraid of a bit of hard work, are willing to charter into unknown territory to give it a try and foresee a happy future with the person- long distance may be something to consider. I was in a long distance relationship with my boyfriend for about six months and I will not lie, it was exhausting. I was living in the DMV area working in healthcare and he was in Los Angeles working as a producer. Truth be told, by the time I moved to LA- I was so sick of airplanes I didn’t want to step foot in one for as long as possible. Flying back and forth between time zones is draining on the body and totally messed with my eating pattern. As someone who considers themselves a very scheduled, organized and routined person, this was pretty difficult. Either way, all of the hurdles in a ldr can be tough but only make the times together that much sweeter. Here are 3 LDR hacks to remember!
- Slow Down and Communicate – In ldrs it can be hard to stay on a consistent visiting schedule, so taking the time talk during the day is so important. There would be evenings where I would come back from work so exhausted and ready to just hit the gym and go to bed. I was on eastern time and my significant other (s.o.) was on pacific time, so when I was ready to go to bed he was just getting home from work. This meant, staying up longer than I was accustomed to. At the end of the day it’s so important to catch up and discuss your day. No matter how frustrating it may be that you can’t physically be with the person, sharing your everyday life happenings is key. In fact, it’s imperative to a relationship’s success. Also, if you happen to have a bit of flexibility, consider switching around your work schedule. It sounds like a hassle but you’d be surprised how tweaking your schedule here and there throughout the day can provide a bit more time at the end of the day to get on the same page. An app I love and recommend for couples (especially those in a LDR) is “Couple.” It is amazing and allows you to message one another, create lists, share vids, photos, share your location, input anniversary dates, draw pictures, etc. I like to think of it as our digital love seat that only he and I share.
- Discuss the Future- When you’re not physically with your s.o. it can be easy to get discouraged and lose sight of the future you look forward to. No matter how much love and passion you have for one another, being in a cross-country relationship can add serious strain on the ability to stay the course. In fact, it’s important to be the rock for another in moments where your work schedule seems too hectic, flights are too expensive and you aren’t able to whisk away to be with one another. Remind each other of the future you look forward to and what kind of plans you have. Talk about the plans, write them out and pray about them. I used to create fun Pinterest boards about our future home and fun trips we could take together and send them to my boyfriend. In my downtime I would create my own newsletters filled with funny/interesting articles, health and fitness info articles, and things that we are interested in that I found online and e-mail them to him. While there are definitely days that seem long and frustrating because you miss one another so much, the little things go a long way.
- Enjoy Your Time Alone- While you’re probably anxiously waiting until the next time you get to see your significant other, it’s super important to enjoy this time to yourself as well. While going out to dinner, watching movies and exploring a new city can definitely be something you want your s.o. to do with you, having moments to do what you enjoy, have new experiences and meet people is vital to influential personal growth. While the goal is to grow as a couple, that can’t happen if you’re not growing individually as well. This remains true whether you are in a ldr or not. At the end of the day, the person you’re with cannot fulfill every need you have and that is perfectly OK. We are meant to have individual experiences and encounters that help us grow into who we are meant to be. This will add to who you are, make for great sharing/conversations and help you become a more well-rounded partner.
Do you have any ldr tips, stories or experiences? Please share in the comments section!
Until Next Time,