Whether you’re new to the dating world or you’re just finding yourself uncomfortable in your relationship, learning to relax around your boyfriend has many benefits. For example, a positive and relaxed attitude can help you keep interactions playful. On the other hand, if you don't feel comfortable around your boyfriend, you might be headed toward an awkward and bumpy relationship. Incorporate several strategies into your daily interactions with your boyfriend to help foster comfortable, healthy relationship.
1. Assess Thinking Patterns
Your feelings of discomfort might be the result of your own negative thinking, rather than relationship problems. Focus on resolving internal issues before searching for external causes of discomfort. In an article about reducing stress, MayoClinic.com highlights four common trends in negative thinking: filtering, in which you only focus on the negatives of a situation; personalizing, in which you blame yourself for bad situations; catastrophizing, in which you typically assume the worst; and polarizing, in which you label situations as either good or bad. If you catch yourself in one of these thinking trends, take note and counter such thinking with positive thoughts.
2. Communicate Effectively
Realize that relationship discomfort isn't exclusively yours to solve. Talk openly with your boyfriend about what's bothering you. Never assume that he already understands the problem, because your perceptions and expectations may widely vary, reminds Jane Collingwood in her PsychCentral.com article "Five Easy Steps to Better Communication." In addition, to decrease the chances of miscommunication, Collingwood suggests spending several minutes assessing your thoughts until you can provide a clear verbal message to your boyfriend.
3. Take It Slow
Avoid rushing through milestones in your relationship if they make you uncomfortable. If your boyfriend pressures you to do something that makes you feel uncomfortable, be open about your feelings and ask him to change the behavior. In regards to factors such as sex and cohabitation, the longer the delay, the better the relationship satisfaction by the woman, explains Susan Krauss Whitbourne, Ph.D., professor of psychology, in her PsychologyToday.com article "Take It Slow If You Want Your Relationship to Last." When couples rush into these events, they are less likely to take the time to compare notes on important issues such as personal values or emotional compatibility. This can lead to future problems down the road, so progress through the relationship at your own comfort level.
4. Be Physically Affectionate
Simple affectionate gestures, such as holding hands, can increase oxytocin, a hormone that triggers feelings of warmth and truth. Affectionate gestures can also help decrease cortisol, a stress hormone, according to a piece, "Human Connections Start with a Friendly Touch," on National Press Radio. With this in mind, never neglect simple gestures of affection, whether they involve a kiss or something as simple as a hug. These seemingly small actions can lead to a comfortable relationship backed by trust.