Being in a relationship is one of the necessities for humans. As much as you love being on your own private, personal island, you’ve also got the choice to make it more meaningful through building a relationship with someone. Having a lifetime partner basically means that you know someone’s got your back, you are adored, and you’re not alone.
As you try to get to know someone, you’ve got to go through different stages, from going out to spending most of your time together. And once you get into the stage of being an official couple, both of you must understand what a healthy relationship is. In reality, a healthy relationship can be different for everyone, and sometimes it can be something that changes over time because of your needs around affection, values, hobbies, space, and communication.
While giving an exact definition of what a healthy relationship is, there are a number of ways to maintain a good or healthy relationship for both of you.
1. Begin with a purpose
Many couples nowadays decide to live together despite not being sure about each other. Some people choose to marry their partners or move in together just because they’ve been in the relationship for a long time. According to relationship and dating experts, these things can happen even at the beginning of the relationship when both or just one is convinced they’re not necessarily meant for each other. Potential clashes or personality and behavioral issues are not being acknowledged in blind love.
Start the relationship with a purpose by thinking about what both of you need and want. Are your interests and values aligned with each other? Are you willing to compromise? By choosing a relationship that you know is right for you, you can boost your own health and relational trajectories over time.
2. Make communication your foundation
Having open communication is probably the first advice that almost every couple receives. But despite how overrated it seems, communication is still one of the biggest struggles for many couples even today. Couples in healthy relationships should have the time and willingness to discuss things happening in their lives, from failures to successes.
Talk about your work, friends, or even more serious topics like financial concerns or mental health. Frequent communication can do wonders for your flourishing relationship. Don’t make your partner guess what you need—tell them. At the same time, it’s also crucial that both of you are taking note of each other’s nonverbal cues, from gestures, tone of voice to eye contact. Understanding their body language will make it easier for you to know what they feel and how you can respond properly.
3. Learn your love language
Particularly for couples who are in their honeymoon phase, impressing each other. One way to improve your relationship’s communication is understanding your love languages. The first one is quality time, which means providing undivided attention to make your partner feel satisfied, comforted, and wanted. Some examples include having movie marathons, trying out a new restaurant, or planning for romantic picnics.
Next is receiving gifts, which obviously applies to people who feel most valued when they receive a present. You can bring them their favorite flowers, buy them a new stylish silicone ring, or make them a mix CD (now, that’s classy). Third is acts of service, which is for individuals who don’t deal well with empty promises. You can make them breakfast in bed, cook dinner, or do the laundry for the weekend. Other types of love languages include physical touch and words of affirmation.
4. Know yourself as separate individuals
Another essential thing to remember is that being in a relationship doesn’t mean you should lose a sense of yourself as a unique, different person. Interdependence is a secret ingredient of a healthy relationship. This means working together or rely on mutual support without compromising or sacrificing each other’s self-interest. Maintaining your individuality is essential to building your own strength and confidence to be able to support others.
Note, though, that you must maintain a balanced relationship. Being too dependent can be daunting and unhealthy, while being too independent may create a distance between your intimate connection.
No matter what a healthy relationship for you is, adaptability is worth focusing on. Understand that like how our needs and preferences change over time, a relationship is also meant to go through different phases. Allow your relationship to flourish in a way that works for you and your partner. Have open communication, build honesty and trust, and most of all, work together as a team and support each other.