We’re all guilty of overusing the hashtag #relationshipgoals. We say it when we see cute pics of Chrissy Teigen and John Legend, or when Ryan Reynolds says something adorable about Blake Lively. Heck, we even drop it when we see a super hot couple on Instagram who we don’t even know.
But how many IRL couples do you know who truly are, well, goals?
Personally, I don’t know many. Sure, I have friends who have been in successful long-term partnerships, but there are very few people I know who are in really, truly, healthy adult relationships that I look up to, except for Sasha-Ann Simons and Matt Phifer.
Now, disclaimer: Sasha is one of my closest friends, so those of you who know me may think I’m being biased, but believe me when I say she and Matt just ~*get it*~ when it comes to a good, strong relationship. In the almost two years they’ve been together, they’ve managed to build a solid enough foundation to support not only each other, but also their blended family that includes four kids.
And, to be honest, anytime I need relationship and dating advice, I always turn to these two, which is why when they announced they would be launching a relationship and dating advice podcast, I freaked out with excitement.
“We felt like we had a good story, with her being a journalist with me being a therapist, we had good things to share and interesting stories to tell,” says Matt of their decision to start the podcast.
“We both listen to people all day long, we both ask questions all day long and we realized our pillow talk was reality TV show material,” Sasha adds.
And thus, “Crazy Luv Stories” was born. The weekly podcast covers everything from attracting your ideal partner to getting out of the friendzone, addressing commitment and, of course, sex. And believe me when I say the advice is golden, and truly valuable, whether you’re in the “attraction, dating or relationship” phase, as Matt likes to put it, or simply just are clueless when it comes to love and relationships.
Still not convinced? Just check out their five best tips relationships tips below for a preview of their sound advice:
Remember: the courtship never ends
“When you keep things exciting and when you don’t allow the courtship to ever end, that’s what keeps relationships built on a strong foundation,” explains Matt. “That’s what people who have been together for 30 or more years do. They continue to date, they continue to love each other, they continue to spend time with each other and they continue to enjoy each other’s time and presence.”
Keep the compliments coming
Never underestimate the power of a compliment, no matter how little it may seem. “There’s hardly ever a time when I don’t know how he feels about me, even if we’re far apart,” says Sasha. “Whether it’s a text, whether it’s just something told to me in the morning before I leave, before I go to bed… it’s just good reassurance that I’ve got a partner in crime that’s got my back.”
“Love the person in such a way so that the person you love feels free”
“A lot of times people get into relationships and they want to lock someone down. But when people start thinking like they’re going to lose their independence, it starts to turn them off,” explains Matt of the Thich Nhat Hanh quote. “People still wanna be loved and wanna be cherished, but at the same time they still wanna be free and have the freedom to do their own thing.”
“Have a life outside of your guy or your girl!” adds Sasha.
Respect each other
“I’ve been in relationships where any of my achievements or anything I was chasing after was not respected,” says Sasha. “With Matt, when I listen to how he talks about me, what I do for a living and certain characteristics of mine, you can just tell that he has such respect for me. [Him making me] feel as though I’m important, that’s a big deal.”
Never stop trying to improve yourself.
“Lots of people do this when they’re single, like work out on the gym, work on communication skills, but once they get in relationships, they stop,” says Matt. “I think you always have to continuously improve yourself no matter what.”