If you currently find yourself in a happy relationship, feel good knowing that you’re worlds ahead of many people out there. Unfortunately, many find themselves in the midst of unhappy, unhealthy relationships and uncertain of what steps they should take next.
But this post isn’t about those relationships, so let’s keep things upbeat!
Happy relationships are profiled by laughter, great memories, and a sense of ease that can be felt between yourself and your partner. In any relationship there will be difficult moments and the occasional disagreement, but the ability to overcome those things makes you stronger as a couple and better for it in the end. As time progresses you become closer, you share more things, you make lasting memories together, and you eventually learn to live alongside of one another to a point where you can’t imagine it any other way.
It’s tough to make every moment last. The good, the bad, the boring (yes, those are important too!) – they all add up to the bigger picture of who you are as a couple. You are individuals who have come together to create a pair that is simply better together. But if you find yourself wanting to take things ever farther and turn your good relationship into a great one, here’s what I recommend:
Spend time together
Even in the case of long distance relationships, quality time together (over Skype, the phone, etc) is crucial. You can’t keep a relationship solid if you’re not nurturing it regularly. Just as you lose contact with old friend, your relationship requires that extra effort to keep things alive. Besides, the whole point of being together is to always have someone there for that extra bit of care that you both provide to one another.
Spend time apart
I know I just said to spend time together, but just as important is spending time apart. Both of you have separate and likely different lives that exist outside of who you are together and your relationship-world. Keep up with friends, do things without them, and make sure you’re chasing your own passions. A significant other is there to support and encourage you, but there’s no need to spend every hour together.
Share the responsibilities
My friends and I joke that the most frequent fight that couples have is answering “what do you want for dinner?” Sure, it’s funny but it illustrates an important point. If all of the responsibilities (deciding what to eat or anything) are put upon one person, it’s a matter of time until that resentment bubbles up and becomes a bigger issue. Try to keep things as balanced and natural as possible and avoid unnecessary bickering.
Keep realistic expectations
Are your expectations of your partner realistic? This is important for multiple reasons. First of all, they aren’t superhuman and they cannot do more than they are capable of. If you’re expecting too much of them, chances are you’re going to be disappointed. That isn’t fair to them and it’s not setting yourself up for happiness either. Second, putting unrealistic expectations on your partner can put them under an unnecessary amount of stress. A happy partner helps ensure that you are better suited to be a happier couple in general.
Confide in each other
Studies have shown that when we tell someone secrets or things that we don’t tell anyone else, we are creating a bond between the two of us. This is why your significant other should be the one that you tell things to. Of course, you can tell things to your best friend or your parents or whomever else you tell things to, but keeping secrets from your partner is never a good idea.
What secrets do you have to take a relationship from good to great?