True human connections are hard to come by. To find a person who understands you and is willing to put in the effort to know you is a special event that doesn’t happen often. But, finding that person is just the first step. The real challenge comes after that.
Building an unbreakable bond, investing your trust, time, and emotions, and most importantly, showing you are committed is what makes a lasting, strong relationship. Preserving that connection is a lot of hard work, and sometimes people get confused about what to do and how to maintain a healthy relationship.
Here are ten things to do to enjoy a happy marriage or any other relationship for a lifetime.
1. Pay Attention, Listen
The most important pillar for any relationship is to show you are interested. And the most obvious indicator of interest is genuinely listening to what your partner is saying. Paying attention and asking how their day went, how they feel, what they want, and simply just by being there to hear them speak their minds is a leap forward in the right direction.
Communication works both ways, though. They should feel interested in your life as equally as you are involved in theirs.
2. Show Your Appreciation
Sometimes we start taking our loved ones for granted. We stop noticing the things they do specifically for us. How they make our favorite meals or put up with movies we love and all other little things. Showering your partners with love and acknowledging their efforts goes a long, long way. Showing your appreciation doesn’t mean taking a play from a Hollywood movie and arranging an extravagant display (although it wouldn’t hurt doing that every once in a while).
Affection and appreciation can be returned in the most simple actions. Try saying how pretty or handsome they look one morning, or thanking them when they go the extra mile to make you happy, cook a special meal, plan the perfect date for them. There are hundreds of little things you could do to show you love them and appreciate them.
3. Trust Them & Mean It
You can’t have a strong relationship without building trust. Trust does not come naturally. It takes time and patience and a little faith on your part. Investing and making a commitment all depend on that one small word, trust.
What does trusting someone mean? Well, being consistent in your actions, giving them their personal space, letting them have a life of their own outside of your relationship, and respecting their boundaries are some ways to go.
Living with someone, spending a ton of time with them, and thinking that you know them comes within the territory of having a healthy relationship. But making assumptions, not asking for their opinions, and not telling them how you feel or what you expect leads to the relationship falling apart. Communication is the bridge between two people, without which you drift away from one another.
Open communication and having healthy conversations regularly on anything to everything is at the core of being in a happy marriage. When facing a hurdle in life, talk to each other, and take action together. You shouldn’t shy away from difficult conversations or feel uncomfortable bringing issues out in the open. Participating in active discussions and finding answers as a team builds trust. Start small by having simple talks over coffee.
Being physically present is not enough. You cannot be a part of a successful partnership without investing. You have to invest your time, emotions, resources, energy, and yourself to say that you have a meaningful relationship.
This is something that comes from within. Your feelings will guide your dedication towards your partner. It will show when you stand by their side always and keep choosing them over anyone else.
6. Spend Time Together
Making space for quality time with your counterpart is a basic requirement. No matter how busy you get, giving even a few moments with complete and genuine attention to your partner makes all the difference. Creating time for each other despite the craziness of life is the key to a happy life.
When you love someone and commit to them, you will have to learn how to compromise. You can’t always agree on everything. It may be something as small as the colour of the curtains at your home or bigger decisions like deciding what car you want to get.
There will come the point where you will have opposing perspectives, and one of the two will have to compromise. You have to be willing to take that step, perhaps not always, but on half the topics.
8. Work Together
Being a team is a show of power for couples.
When a problem comes up, when you disagree, when someone (or both of you) make mistakes, and even when there is a fight, you have to remember that you’re still on the same team. It is easy to play the blame game or point out flaws in others, but at the end of the day, you can’t let that blind you to the fact that you care for the person.
If there’s a hurdle, work through it together. If there’s a fight, talk to each other. If there’s a situation where you have to take sides, make sure you are on the same team.
9. Accept The Differences
Even when you have a lot of things in common, no two people can be the exact same.
It is realistic and normal to have differences. You may like chocolate ice-cream, your partner may prefer strawberry. And differences may result in opposite points of view or different decisions.
Learn to respect and appreciate those differences. Know that your partner has their flaws and you have your own, despite the fact you chose each other and will continue to as the years go by.
10. Grow With Each Other
As humans, we are always experiencing new things in life. We learn from these moments and change and grow.
When you are in a committed relationship, especially for a long time now, you have to expect that your partner and even your own self will change as people. Maybe not dramatically, but in some ways, they will. You have to be willing to accept them as they grow, and you have to learn and mature together to keep your bond strong and healthy.
Healthy relationships and happy marriages demand a lot from a person. But they are fulfilling, and, in the end, they’re worth the little effort. The only way to come out strong is by respecting each other and communicating.