10 Ways To Build A Healthy Relationship
Written by: Kat Gal
If you are like most people, you want to love and be loved.
You are likely either looking for a partner or have found one that you are hoping to create a life-long happy partnership with.
But love and relationships are not automatic Cinderella stories. After that magical kiss, happily ever after doesn’t come as a handout. There are ups and downs in every relationship. Relationships are hard work.
By work I don’t mean suffering and pain. In a good relationship, this work is actually fun, exciting and enriching. It is still work. Relationships are about love, trust and commitment, but also about many other things such as support and compromise.
The romance between my husband and I started nearly 9 years ago on November 11th (yes: 11-11, the magical number!). Though the initial spark was truly magical with a rainbow, purple clouds and butterflies, throughout the years we have definitely experienced some challenges.
Let’s start with the fact that we are an international couple from two different countries, which – after over a year and a half together – forced us into long distance. At times we were not able to see each other for up to 5-6 months and at times we could not even communicate in any way for up to a month when I was living in rural Africa. We have also traveled together for over a year. Let me tell you: when you travel together and spend 24/7 together for that long, you learn a lot about each other. You also learn how to cope with frustrations and differences.
After 9 years together, we are still learning about each other and still learning to love each other better – while it is work, it is fun work and I look forward continuing it for decades to come.
If you are committed to creating a beautiful, thriving and loving relationship with your partner and ready for all the fun work, you should know that it is absolutely possible to create it. Love is such an exciting and joyful adventure.
Here are 10 tips to help you develop a long-lasting beautiful relationship.
1. Be There
Be there for each other. By this I don’t simply mean being in the same physical space doing whatever, but actually building a meaningful connection. This can happen over Skype, phone or email in case of a long distance relationship or inability to see each other every day. Spend quality time with each other. Listen and care for each other. Your needs and definition of ‘being there’ depends on you and your partner, so don’t be afraid to communicate and discuss your needs and intentions.
2. Be Playful
Being playful can mean so many things. It can mean physical play in and outside of the bedroom, but also communicating playfully, having inside jokes and exchanging smiles. Most importantly it is simply the nature of your relationship. The ability of fun goes a long way. After all, what’s the point if you can’t have fun together?
3. Be Vulnerable
Being vulnerable and emotionally open may be one of the hardest and most terrifying things you can do. It requires a lot of trust. But it is also essential in your relationship in getting to know each other. When you know who your partner really is, what his/her dreams, desires and (yes) fears are, you can truly accept and support him/her. And vice-versa. Vulnerability will help both of you to love and support each other for your true selves, not for an ideal image or a mask. Get vulnerable. Don’t be afraid to risk being hurt in order to allow deep and true love to happen.
4. Be A Team
Teamwork is the basis of a true and loving partnership. It doesn’t mean you can’t be individuals anymore. You can and you should be, so should your partner. But it is absolutely crucial that your partner is your best friend and you are able to work together. Use each other’s’ strengths to work together as a loving team, creating a thriving partnership.
5. Be Individuals
While being a team is important, being individuals with separate identities is too. Have your own hobbies, friends and alone time and support your partner in being who he/she is too. Be interested in each others lives and support each other’s endeavors and needs.
6. Be An Amazing Listener
Don’t fall into the trap of pretending to listen in order to be able to answer, to have a comeback, to form an opinion and to share your opinion. Listening is completely different. Listening is not about a comeback and “your turn,” but true curiosity, attention and care. Listening is an art that requires practice, patience and love. Give your partner the space to explore and to share.
7. Be Honest
Along with trust, honesty is the basis of a good and thriving relationship. Honesty does not mean you have to be mean, blunt, or disrespectful. You can stay loving, gentle and respectful, while also remaining honest and true to yourself. You should be able to disagree, have a healthy discussion and form your own opinion. Honesty actually creates better connection between partners.
8. Be Equal
This goes without saying. Your relationship should be balanced. You need to treat each other equal and act equal as well. Don’t mistake being equal with 50-50 though. Use your strengths and complement each other. If you are better at something, you may do more of it, if he/she is better at something else, he/she may take more part in that task. Simply give 100% of you according to the best of your abilities and treat each other as equal partners.
9. Be Loving
That’s just another “duh.” Tell your partner that you love him/her. Seriously. Don’t just say a quick “love ya” to get it over with, but truly say it and show it. Express your love in various ways: through words, touch, gifts, gestures, help and care. Give compliments. Give hugs and kisses. Get creative. Ask how you can express your love better.
10. Be Trusting
Trust is the basis of any relationship. It should be automatic. It should go without an effort. The lack of trust and unnecessary jealousy can create tension, stress and doubt. Trust your partner if you want to be trusted.
These 10 tips will help you in developing a long-lasting beautiful relationship.
What are your tips for a healthy relationship? Share your tips in the comments below, we would love to hear from you.
Kat Gál is a multi-passionate writer, world traveler, nomad, runner, and cat-person. She is a lifelong learner who lives outside of her comfort zones stretching her boundaries and discovering beauty around the world. She is a Certified Holistic Health and Life Coach who encourages others to embrace their unique authentic selves, follow their heart and find their own version of freedom in life.
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