3 Tips To Keep Long-Distance Relationships Alive

long-distance relationships

Midlife & Beyond Dating: Illa Lynn

Relationships in essence are very challenging but very exciting.

Long Distance Relationships Can Be Challenging:

When you add distance into the mix it can become a case of “It’s complicated”. However, it doesn’t have to be.

The Internet has brought people from diverse backgrounds and geographic regions together, making long-distance relationships quite common these days. These long-distance relationships can be challenging and confusing. 

“They do require little extra effort and planning, to be sustainable.”

It is often believed that long-distance relationships cannot work, but I beg to differ. This is partly due to having done that personally and partly having witnessed a number of ladies who found love at a distance. 

Yes, many long-distance relationships fail, but this can be said for any type of relationship, really. Would you agree?

Not Just Temporary Long-Distance Romance Stories:

Long-distance romances can turn into long-term life experiences and not just temporary romance stories. They do require little extra effort and planning, to be sustainable.  

What many people don’t realize is there are many benefits to having a long-distance connection, especially if you are somewhat choosy of your “ME” time. And when you understand how fortunate you are to have someone on the other end, willing to go the distance, you will want to make it worthwhile. 

With that in mind, here are 3 ways to make it more fun and meaningful for both.

1.) Stay Consistent, Hold Each Other Accountable:

The most difficult thing to deal with in a long-distance relationship is the most obvious thing: the distance and inability to physically be together.

“Designate a timeframe every day to connect and have a catch-up call about your day to day.”

Consistency is the key here, because it helps with the building of trust among partners. Designate a timeframe every day to connect and have a catch-up call about your day to day. 

My husband and I used to talk twice a day. Once before I would leave for work and again before I went to bed. As back up he would send me an email that I got to read when I got home, if we were not able to talk due to the time difference. Life happens, and flexibility is highly encouraged in these types of situations.

2.) Go On Virtual Dates:

In today’s virtual world there are a number of ways to be creative with your dates. Once or twice a week, choose face-time and have a movie night or cook a meal together. Doing these fun activities will keep your bond strong even if you are parted.

If you want to take it up a notch, explore deep questions that create intimacy and build trust. Seek to infuse excitement into your day (especially after a long tiring day), and fill the time in a fun way leading up to your next rendezvous.

  • You can make a list of all fun stuff you get to do next time you see each other.
  • Or play a fun game like “Show me Yours”. 

No, it is not what you may think. This game involves using your phone gallery to find images that match a topic you’ve chosen i.e (food, beverage, travel, holidays etc.) Each player gets a point for finding the image first. It is up to you both to decide what the winner gets. (wink) 

“This is where compromise and acceptance come into play.”

Check out these other virtual dating fun ideas.

3.) Have A Long-Term Plan:

Dating long distances will most likely challenge your trust and patience. 

If and when you become serious about being together, it is imperative to open up the subject of what’s the long-term plan. This is where compromise and acceptance come into play. 

Is he willing to uproot and relocate, or will it be you? This is a tough conversation to have. One of you will have to say goodbye to your life as you know it and adapt to a whole new plan. Be gentle with your partner and with yourself, as you attempt this transition.

Long-Distance Relationships Can Thrive:

In my case, my husband uprooted his life. It was solely his decision to do so. He wanted us to be together and start our family. My husband gave up both his businesses and said goodbye to his family and friends. It was tough, but he shared with me that he focused on what he was walking toward, rather than what he was walking away from. 

Taking this step is a huge commitment, so take your time to decide what is right for you. Ultimately, long-distance relationships can thrive if you are clear on what it is you want out of it and you both walk in the same direction.

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About the Author:

Illa Lynn is a former corporate health care leader turned Life Coach who specializes in Relationship Coaching for women. In addition to her ten years of academic and professional training, she specializes in dating after 40. Specifically dating after divorce, or toxic love. Using her psychology background and intuitive nature, Illa helps women open up to love again. In three steps, Illa guides women to create lasting, authentic relationships founded on transparency, respect, and trust. Follow Illa on LinkedIN for more tips and tricks on dating.