Maintaining long-term relationships can be a complex undertaking that requires significant time and attention. When things begin to go wrong, partners can take proactive steps to get the relationship back on track. These efforts can often make the difference between strengthening the partnership and heading toward a breakup.

1. Stop Assigning Blame
One of the most common problems that occurs in rocky marriages is the pattern of assigning blame for past problems and mistakes. This pattern only intensifies resentment and keeps the couple locked into the past. Understanding that all marriages go through difficult times and that people are never perfect can help the individuals to move forward from events that occurred earlier in the relationship. They can then begin to focus on the present and their shared goals for the future.

2. Re-Focus on Relationships
Work schedules, children, family responsibilities and social demands can cause a whirl of activity that prevents the partners from focusing on what’s going on with the other person. Unplugging from normal schedules for a weekend away from home or a relaxing vacation can allow the two parties to get to know each other again and reconnect in a more profound way.

3. Schedule Regular Date Nights
Maintaining a good line of communication can be aided by scheduling regular date nights to catch up on a partner’s condition and rekindle the interest that brought the two parties together in the first place. These short interludes, free from everyday distractions, can help to re-establish intimacy, friendship, shared interests and empathy between partners.

4. Improve Communication Skills
People assume that their communication skills are top-rate because they use them every day in social and work situations. However, in more intimate relationships, a higher level of communication is needed in which the two parties listen carefully to what is said and what is not being said. Couples should take the time to practice their listening skills to ensure that any small problems can be resolved before they become larger conflicts that threaten the marriage.

5. Consider Counseling
Many people feel that counseling is something of a last resort for a relationship. However, counseling can also be useful for “tune-ups” that help a relationship get back on track after a period of growing conflict. Don’t be afraid to utilize this helpful measure for keeping your relationship healthy.

6. Legal Measures
In some cases, the couple may decide that divorce is the only solution to their constant state of conflict. Discussing these matters with attorneys, such as those as at the Kitchen Simeson and Belliveau LLP and other firms, can help to clarify the legal issues that will affect both parties in the marriage, as well as any children that are involved. With competent legal representation, these matters can be settled in a reasonable and mutually satisfactory way.

A proactive strategy for dealing with marital problems can help to eliminate the possibility of additional conflicts, whatever the final outcome.

Author's Bio: 

A recent college graduate from University of San Francisco, Anica loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. She was raised in a big family, so she's used to putting things to a vote. Also, cartwheels are her specialty. You can connect with Anica here.