7 Activities To Do Alone To Stay Independent In Your Relationship

Hannah Burton/Bustle

Relationships are amazing; you get to share your life with someone who wants to be there for you. But being someone's partner doesn't have to mean being inseparable. Finding out how to stay independent in a relationship is one of the (tricky) keys to success.

"When we are in a relationship, it is important to have a sense of self and independence, while integrating lives with your partner," Dr. Danielle Forshee, doctor of psychology and licensed clinical social worker, tells Bustle. "This can be a difficult balance to achieve — similar to the difficulty in achieving a work-life balance." Maintaining the balance, however, is necessary. Friends, hobbies, and traditions don't disappear when someone new enters your life. You just have to work to make things go smoothly.

If there's conflict, it's likely not about the fact that you're spending time apart, but how and why you are. "I often see couples who argue about the way that one of them spends their time, but the issue is not really about that, but about the relationship dynamic in general, and fears and assumptions each partner is making about what those activities mean," Amy McManus, licensed marriage and family therapist, tells Bustle. This just means, like all else in relationships, that you need to be open and honest with your partner about what you want and why. Communication is key, after all.

In the end, keeping things separate, to some degree, will be healthy for your relationship. "Exposing your partner to who you are and what you do outside of the relationship is ... important in maintaining cohesion in the relationship," Dr. Forshee says.

Here are seven activities you should still do on your own, even if you're in a relationship.