How to Save Your Failing Relationship in 21 Steps

If your relationship has a lot of signs that it’s over, it doesn’t mean you should give up. Even if it feels like all hope is lost at the moment, it may reassure you to know that most couples have been at this point more than once. Sometimes it’s important that things get worse before they can get better. Right now is a critical moment which determines whether you go separate ways or you are able to save your relationship and stay together, maybe forever.

Understand the Basics

1. Emotions change

One of the biggest mistakes in a relationship is to take it for granted. In the beginning, when you are still in love, everything is simple and wonderful. There is hardly any conflict and just being in the same room makes you happy. But this feeling of being in love which holds you together as if by itself, unfortunately, does not remain this stable for very long. It never disappears entirely, but instead of being there permanently, it is only present in phases. However, new feelings like security, trust and the impression of being one will take its place.

2. Two secrets of couples that stay together

Couples who have been together for a very long time have learned that a healthy relationship is based on two principles. Technically there are much more, but when you summarize them, it all comes down to these two things: 1. Regularly creating feelings 2. Getting along with each other. Actually quite simple, but nevertheless it is challenging for many couples to implement this in their everyday life. In this article, I will go further into these points and explain to you how you can achieve this.

3. Healthy relationships take work

The fact that you are reading this article carefully, shows that you have already started working on your love life and know that there is always something to learn. The time when everything worked by itself due to the strong initial feelings is over. Now you will realize if you are ready to take the relationship to the next level. To achieve this, the two before mentioned foundations have to be fulfilled and you have to work actively on them.

Analyse Your Relationship

How compatible are you?

Basically, all couples fit together somehow as long as they find each other attractive. How well your relationship works is determined by how well you fit together and your eagerness to work on it. The better you fit together, the less work is needed. Two people with nearly perfect compatibility are what we call soulmates. When you have many different views, and your personalities don’t harmonize with each other, a lot of compromises are required. Now write down in which areas you have different opinions. It will be quite easy because you only have to think about your last arguments. Nevertheless, also try to remember the things where you agree and write them down too.

Why should you be together?

After you made a list of your views of life which match or are different, you make another list with all possible reasons why you came together, what you love about your partner and also what characteristics you can’t stand. This gives you a different perspective and helps you get a better overview. It is essential to make these lists because your emotions can change, but facts remain the same. It allows you to make a clear and rational decision in the next step.

What do you really want

Thanks to the lists you have a foundation to make the following fundamental decision: Are you 100% convinced that you want to save this relationship? This does not mean that there are only positive points and you are a perfect match. In every relationship, there are problems that you ideally solve one after the other. Think about what is important to you in a relationship and whether your partner has the potential to fulfill these requirements someday. You have to be sure that you want to keep your partner and that you are willing to put effort into it without giving up immediately.

How broken is your relationship?

After a big argument, you often ask yourself if this is still all worth it. However, these are usually only temporary feelings that fog a clear view of the situation. How many of the signs that your relationship is over apply to you? Has this feeling been there for a few months or only the last few weeks? The next step is to talk with your partner about these problems. But maybe your relationship is not as broken as it may seem to you. In this case, you would needlessly worry your partner. Therefore it sometimes makes sense not to have a clarifying conversation and to work on it yourself by mentioning individual issues from time to time.

How to Get Along

Have a talk

Let’s assume that your relationship has been going badly for some time and is about to end. Then it is necessary to have a clarifying conversation with your partner. Use a moment when your partner is relaxed and has some time to talk about the matter. Explain your point of view and that you think your relationship will have no future if you don’t fix it. Maybe he or she agrees but hasn’t had the courage to speak openly. Don’t blame anyone and don’t start to list all the problems. First of all, your partner should be willing to speak openly about your situation and is also interested in improving it. Show him or her that you care to save the relationship and that you don’t want to give up.

What do you love about each other?

You have already started to write these things down with your previously created lists. Now your partner should do the same because it is not only great for you to hear the reasons, but your boyfriend or girlfriend will also notice why they can be grateful for you. To avoid disappointments, agree on a certain quantity. If you both have found the same amount, read them to each other. This step will generate many positive emotions that you need as motivation to endure the next steps.

What do you argue about?

Now you’re ready to face your problems. Think about what you’ve been arguing about lately. Write down everything that comes to your mind. Then sort things into categories such as sex, money, romance, jealousy and so on. You will notice that what appeared to you like a thousand issues are usually the same things in a different form.

What’s bothering you about the other one?

Now that you’ve found your most significant problems, you can uncover the root cause. Most issues can only be solved by recognizing the behavior that leads to it. Let’s assume that jealousy is a problem in your relationship. The reason you are jealous could be that you do not trust your partner. The behaviors which made you lose trust were dishonesty and keeping things to himself. Now it’s easier to work on this issue because you know what caused it. Another example could be that the girlfriend expects that boyfriend to spend money on her regularly, but he doesn’t. In this case, the problem could be that she measures his affection by how much he spends on her. Changing his behavior by giving her more love and commitment in other ways could solve this issue.

Recognize and forgive mistakes

People make mistakes all the time, that’s normal. But some things hurt the other person and can affect the relationship negatively for a long time. Certain mistakes from the past may be cleared up for one partner, but the other partner has still not been able to settle. These open wounds subconsciously cause a feeling of anger and can lead to seeking revenge to restore balance. Therefore, it is important to express what is hurting you right after it happened. This is difficult for some people because they misinterpret vulnerability as a sign of weakness. The opposite is the case, admitting your vulnerability and emotions requires courage and confidence. In addition, it often happens that one is not even aware that he or she has hurt their partner. Speaking about it is the only way to give the other person the opportunity to see his mistake, apologize and work on not repeating it in the future. It is also crucial to forgive and to leave it behind after this. Don’t be resentful because you will bring negative energy into the relationship again and again.

Learning to accept things

As mentioned before, not all people fit together equally well. But now you are in this relationship, you are determined to save it and want to be happy with your partner. Therefore it makes no sense to think about whether another partner might fit better. The grass isn’t greener on the other side, it’s greener where you water it. Accept your partner how they are and don’t try to make another person out of them. Nobody is perfect, neither are you, so say goodbye to the idea that everything has to be exactly how you want it to be.

Finding compromises and making rules

A relationship will never be flawless, but you should always strive to have less conflict and more harmony. You can achieve this with the help of compromises and rules. As we have already seen, most problems can be traced back to the same causes. You will have different views or ideas about certain things. If only one person adapts to the other, it will make them unhappy in the long run. Therefore both should approach each other and meet in the middle. Let’s take the example of jealousy. The boyfriend wants to go out with his friends every weekend, but the girlfriend doesn’t like it at all. He could agree to take her with him or only go out twice a month and be home at a particular time.

Create Feelings

In the beginning, I explained that couples in a happy relationship have two things in common. They get along well with each other, and they know how to create moments of romance even after the initial phase. You can actively trigger these feelings yourself through certain behaviors, which I will focus on in this part.

Increase Oxytocin

The hormone oxytocin is responsible for strengthening the bond between two people. It is released during body contact and especially during sex. It works like a drug and increases the feeling of missing each other and of wanting to hold them in your arms. If you are in a long-distance relationship or do not see each other very often for other reasons, it is necessary to stimulate the release of this hormone. Have lots of sex and regularly cuddle, whether in front of the TV or in bed.

Have better sex

Not only is the highest amount of oxytocin released during sex, but it is also an essential component of a relationship. In long relationships, monotony and everyday stress kill the lust of many couples. Therefore, you should ensure varying and exciting sex. One of the best and simplest methods are Sex games. Read this article afterward: 14 Exciting Sex Games for Couples.

Increase adrenaline

There have been studies that couples fall in love faster if they do activities that generate a lot of adrenaline during their first dates. Plan an adventurous date idea and add it to your calendar. You’ll feel a sense of excitement and anticipation weeks in advance just by thinking about it. Have the courage to do something new that you haven’t done yet. This will also provide lasting memories you will often think back on and tell your friends about. Create a feeling of team spirit because the two of you experienced it together. The world’s best collection of date ideas can be found at

Have Date Nights

Plan at least one night a week as date night. This evening will be reserved for quality time as a couple. It doesn’t always have to be something extraordinary, trying out a new restaurant or going to the cinema are also great ideas. Game nights can also be a lot of fun, check out this article about 70 Fun Games for Couples. Especially the relationship games are great to reconnect emotionally in a playful way.

Strengthens your Commonalities

Commonalities increase the feeling of unity and a sense of togetherness. Start talking about your future and how you imagine it as a couple. It doesn’t have to be realistic. Daydreaming about it creates beautiful feelings and a direction to work towards with anticipation. Find a hobby that is fun for both of you, which you can do over a long period of time and in which you get better and better. Make friends with other couples and do something together. Plan a Game Night for Couples! Make sure to read that article because it contains many helpful tips.

Surprises and Gifts

Nothing makes the heart of a woman and man beat faster than the words “We have to talk”. I’m kidding, you want to evoke positive feelings and fortunately, there is another phrase which also makes them excited like little kids. It’s called “I have a surprise for you!”. Find something to surprise your partner at least once a month. This can be a fantastic date or a romantic gift. The best selection of gifts for couples can be found on Especially personalized gifts combined with a matching date idea will do wonders. An example would be to relive your first date, then go to the place of your first kiss, have an intimate moment and give your partner a bracelet or necklace with engraved coordinates from this special place.

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