10 Tips For A Happier RelationshipOctober 11, 2021
We all crave to have healthy relationships, but most of us were never really taught about what that actually means. Actually, you will never be taught that at school. One of the most profound and exciting experiences we can have in our lives is the connection we have with other human beings. Positive and supportive relationships will help us to feel healthier, happier, and more satisfied with our lives. But how do we acquire that, You ask?
Here are 10 tips for a healthy relationship
1. Make “me” time a priority
This is probably the most important thing to wrap your head around. What does “me” time have to do with enriching “us” time, you ask? Well, to nurture your relationship with another person, you first need to connect with yourself. That means selflove. This goes further than spa days (although those are lovely!). It’s about spending quality time alone every day and doing something you love, maybe reading a book, taking a bath, spending time in nature, meditating, journaling, etc.
Make a list of all the nourishing things you love to do and then make a conscious decision to choose time for you every day. Write it in your calendar. By taking this time, you’ll not only fill your own cup, but you will also have more resources—energy and patience—for your partner and their needs. Having a morning and/or evening routine is often successful, especially if you have kids. It will ensure that you’ve chosen time for yourself either before the distractions of the day get in the way or after the kids have gone to bed and your house quiets down.
Another important and effective way to have regular personal time is to let your partner know in advance that you need 30 to 60 minutes for yourself on occasion. This gives your partner the opportunity to support you, while also knowing they have the option to have their own “me” time, since it’s something we all need. Sharing your goals will also keep the air clear and avoid any miscommunication between you.
Making time for yourself is one of the healthiest ways you can maintain your relationship, however contradictory it may seem. Work to make “me” time a habitual practice in your life.
2. Ask questions beyond just “How was your day?”
At the end of a long day, we tend to mentally check out of our lives and, consequently, our relationship. We rely on the standard question, “How was your day?” But because we hear that question so often, many of us will reflexively just respond with the bare minimum: “Fine. How was yours?” This does nothing to improve your connection and can actually damage it because you’re losing the opportunity to regularly connect in a small way.
If your initial “How was your day?” doesn’t spark much conversation, try asking more creative follow-up questions: “What made you smile today?” or “What was the most challenging part of your day?” You’ll be amazed at the answers you’ll get, with the added benefit of gaining greater insight into your significant other.
3. Communicate to solve conflict
As with anything, open communication is necessary when it comes to building and maintaining a healthy relationship.
And in a long-term relationship, calm, open, and constructive communication is essential when it comes to solving conflict since no interpersonal bond ever comes truly free from conflict.
4. Accept differences.
One of the biggest challenges we experience in relationships is that we are all different. We can perceive the world in many ways. Certainly astumbling block that we come across when we try to build relationships is a desire or an expectation that people will think like we do and, in this way, it is so much easier to create a rapport. We feel more comfortable when we feel that people “get” us and can see our point of view. Life, however, would be very dull if we were all the same and, while we may find it initially easier, the novelty of sameness soon would wear off. So accepting and celebrating that we are all different is a great starting point.
5. Don’t assume your partner knows what you want and need from him/her
Assumptions like this can breed resentment and disappointment when it turns out your partner isn’t aware of a particular need.
It’s not uncommon to have thoughts like, “If she really cared she would just know to do X.” The problem with this is that we all have different expectations of each other. We often learn these expectations implicitly — from observing our parents, or from movies, or from friend’s relationships. We’ve all learnt different strategies for different situations, so our assumptions of what is appropriate are likely to differ.
Talk with each other about what you need and what you prefer. For example, “When I storm out of an argument in tears, it makes me feel cared for if you follow me to comfort me,” or “When I storm out of an argument in tears, I’d really appreciate it if you’d leave me alone to clear my head, so I can come back and discuss it when I’m calm.”
6. Make time to be a couple
This one is especially important if you have children.
One of the biggest relationship vulnerabilities is child-centered marriages. Sometimes when you become a family, you forget what it’s like to be a couple.
Some people struggle with feeling selfish if they make time for themselves. It can feel like they’re not putting their kids first, which can be hard!
7. Support your partner
Having a heart that is dedicated to serving others and assisting them to accomplish their desires & dreams will always get you further in life. Partners in a relationship should have this kind of heart. It does not mean that one forgets about themselves and their wellbeing. It only indicates that you should serve your partner and encourage them to do the same for you. In this way, you build each other up and grow stronger as a couple as well as an individual.
8. Respect your partner
Having respect for someone means that you see their unique qualities as being valuable in making them exactly who they are. Moreover, you take their desires seriously. Respect allows the partners in the relationship to foster and create equality between them. Moreover, it allows them to be thoughtful and consider each other in every decision that affects them. Care and concern in a relationship are both a result of mutual respect in a relationship.
9. Don’t Forget the Small Things
Saying please and thank you shouldn’t be reserved for the company. Manners are important – even with the person you’ve been with for 20 years. Extend the same respect to your spouse as you would to a visiting guest. Say please and thank you, make polite conversation and why not offer your partner a drink? A few manners and niceties will go a long way to maintaining a culture of mutual respect.
10. Be appreciative.
No really, show your love and appreciation on a consistent basis and not just on holidays, birthdays and when you “want something.” Feeling appreciated is a basic human need and sometimes in the mad rush that comprises our days, we forget that a simple “thank you” or a special little gift (for no real reason at all) or simply carving out a little extra time for each other can sweeten even the best of relationships.