With the stress of the holidays still lingering and a whole new year to psych yourself up for, it's totally natural to be feeling a little overwhelmed — and that can take a toll on your love life. That's why it's so important to take some time to work on your relationship, especially during those early years when your bond is more vulnerable.
"Love is bliss — and then the reality of being in a relationship sets in," Joshua Klapow, PhD, clinical psychologist and host of The Kurre and Klapow Show, tells Bustle. "Sadly, so many couples who start off in love see the demise of their relationship within the first five years."
Knowing how to strengthen your relationship can be tricky — there's a lot of advice out there about how your relationship should look, but less about how to get there. "We all know it takes hard work, but the question becomes just what is that work?" Klapow says. "If you want to make your relationship stronger in 2019 then follow the science. Dr. John Gottman has some of the most extensive scientific research areas of relationships, relationship communication and relationship success or failure."
Using Gottman's research, Klapow has some advice for making your relationship happier and stronger in 2019. Here's where you can start.