Fostering a healthy happy relationship requires work. For some couples, being happy is easier than for others. Guaranteed though, all relationships will face a challenge or two at some point. If you’ve chosen to be together, there’s always a reason.
I came across these seven points written by an anonymous author in 1933, and they brought a smile on my face. Though I tend to be quite old-fashioned and conservative, I think these can be adapted to most healthy relationships. Life was very different 85 years ago, hence I modified them ever-so-slightly. The basis is still there though.
7 Tips for a happy relationship
- Don’t nag. You can mention something once or twice, but nagging won’t lead anywhere.
- Appreciate your partner for who they are. Don’t try to change them. We’re all defined by certain characteristics, if you’ve once accepted them for who they are, abide by it. Change must always come from within, you cannot force someone to change.
- Don’t mock each other. A healthy relationship requires trust and honesty, but consider when, why and how you present critique. No-one appreciates hearing that their cooking is terrible or that they’ve gained weight. You can and should be encouraging, but avoid hurtful truths. Focus rather on the effort and the positive things.
- Enforce honest appreciation and thanks. Giving and receiving compliments can be difficult sometimes, but showing genuine appreciation is worth it.
- Provide your partner with small gestures of appreciation. Make them feel noticed, seen, and appreciated. Avoid taking people for granted. Just because you’re together, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t continuously also show that you care. It can be anything from bringing home flowers to serving a cup of coffee.
- Be polite. Being polite shouldn’t be limited to confronting strangers or behavior outside your home. There’s nothing wrong with holding the door for your partner or wishing them a great day. On the contrary, it’s another way of showing respect and appreciation.
- Intimacy. Talking about your needs and wants can be an exciting adventure! Explore, experiment, have fun together!
Remembering why you chose your partner
These seven points are very simple and basic and all apart from the last one can be used for pretty much any human interaction. When you’ve been in a relationship with someone for a longer time, things change. The initial crush and puppy love eventually fade, which is why the groundwork should be in place. Nowadays it seems so easy for people to walk away from a relationship the moment you’re faced with the smallest of storms. We seem to forget why we chose each other. Obviously sometimes you hit a brick wall, and there’s nothing anyone can do about it. Most of the time however, a lot depends on the fact that we have simply forgotten. We forget why we initially fell in love. Why we chose to share our life with someone.
My husband and I met nine years ago, and have been married for six years. We have a non-traditional relationship, as we’re apart a lot of the time. And in all honesty, we have been through a lot of ups and downs. Our highlights and challenges have been both euphoric and heart-breaking, but we’re still hanging on tight. We chose each other with all our flaws and imperfections, and that’s the way its meant to be. We have a beautiful family that the two of us created together, and that family is worth every smile and every tear we put into it.