Those with hundreds of miles between them no longer have to wait weeks by the mailbox or pay dollars a minute just to hear from their significant others. Tools like Skype, FaceTime, and unlimited texting plans make it easier than ever to maintain a long-distance relationship. Even with this technology, it’s only natural to wonder how to make your long-distance relationship a healthy one.

Make time together a priority

Out of sight, out of mind? That shouldn’t be the case, especially if you want to maintain the relationship over time. Take time zones into consideration and schedule a time at least once a week where you can sit down and talk to each other.

Talk about when you’ll see each other next

It is much easier to make long-distance work when you know it isn’t endless. Know when the next time you’ll see each other is and have that set as something to look forward to. After you see each other, make it a priority to talk about the next “end date,” even if it’s far away.

Don’t plan too much for the in-person time you do have

Many long-distance couples feel a much greater sense of urgency to do a lot in the time they actually have together. It can be very easy to over-plan but try to resist that urge. It can make one or both of you feel a lot of pressure to have the “perfect” time together. Remember that relationships are made up of both big and little moments and leave time to let those little ones happen.

Discuss the future

Long-distance relationships are unique because they require so much more intentionality and sacrifice in the day-to-day. Discussing the future helps the two of you evaluate the relationship and whether your dreams and goals align. You want to go into it as two individuals committed to each other and making the long-distance part work may require you to find out where your future paths will coincide. 

Balance your time

It’s important to spend time developing friendships and investing in interests or goals in addition to your long-distance relationship. It is very possible to become so involved in your long-distance relationship that you put everything else on hold. Isolating yourself would be unhealthy and make the long-distance aspect of your relationship even harder.

See the long-distance relationship as positive

When people hear you’re in a long-distance relationship, a common response is “wow, that must be hard.” It is all too easy to focus on the things that are difficult, like not seeing each other whenever you’d like. However, some long-distance can actually build a stronger relationship over time. Those couples in long-distance relationships tend to be better verbal communicators and the distance can help you appreciate each other more, so less significant quirks don’t bother you as they might have otherwise.

Do things together, even when you’re apart

Get creative and plan fun things to do. Binge-watch the same show or plan a movie date over Skype so you can watch it together. Send each other quizzes or articles to do or read so you can discuss them together the next time you talk.

Long-distance relationships can be difficult, but in them, there is opportunity to grow and thrive. If you’d like to learn more about healthy relationships, Hopeline PRC can help with healthy relationship education.