What Defines a Healthy Relationship



People these days go in and out of relationships, wondering what went wrong, when they end. There are many things that we can all do to prevent break ups. But what’s usually involved is putting a certain amount of love and effort into working on yourself as a person and working on your relationship as a team. If both people aren’t willing to put a certain amount of love and effort into maintaining their relationship, it will be doomed for failure. One-sided relationships never work, so both people need to be willing to adjust, give, and equally contribute their love, their effort, and their time in order to make things happy and healthy.


For starters, relationships take a certain amount of give-and-take. Both people need to be willing to do things for their partner in the most selfless of ways whenever possible. Concentrate on giving more than receiving. Having said that, just as much as it’s important to be a giver in relationships, it’s also imperative to be able to receive and to accept your partner’s love it whichever form they give it.

Know your partner well. Know their likes and dislikes, and if you can, get to know what triggers them, and try to avoid doing those things. Don’t get me wrong—There’s no need to walk on eggshells. Just try your best to avoid causing any discomfort and pain to your partner, especially if you have an idea or some sense of what triggers them and makes them feel bad or annoyed. Do things to create more happiness for you and your partner, not less. We all want to be loved differently, so get to know your partner enough , and to the point where you will know what makes them feel loved, and do your best to do those things.


Secondly, we shouldn’t make things such a big deal, unless they need to be. Not everything is a big deal in life, and a lot of times we take “having peace in our home” (Shalom Bayit) for granted. Just like the saying goes, “Don’t sweat the small stuff,” —Don’t make little things such a big deal, and if you can avoid stressing over insignificant and petty things, you’ll find your relationship to be a much happier one. Nothing is worse than when couples bring in unnecessary drama which only leads to misery.


Next, remember to communicate your feelings to each other. Communication is everything, and you should be each other’s best friend, and confidant. Your partner should be the person that you can go to, not only when you need someone to talk to and vent out your feelings, but during the good times as well. In other words, you should be sharing your feelings, opinions, experiences, and embrace your partner enough so that you’ll have a healthy comfort level. You should be able to communicate with your partner and to tell them how you feel without feeling the need to hold back, build a wall, filter, or put on any type of act so that you’ll appear more happy or Zen than you actually are.


In the same manner that your partner shouldn’t expect you to be perfect or to live a perfect life, you shouldn’t expect such of yourself. No one is perfect, and if you’re not careful, being too much of a perfectionist can become toxic to you and to your relationship. To strive towards improving or even to maintain the happiness within your relationship is wonderful, but to expect perfection will only lead to disappointment and ultimately, unhappiness. Expectations are one of the biggest reasons for couples experiencing unhappiness. To have a healthy relationship, you must be reasonable, and lower your expectations.


This brings me to the next thing that’s imperative to have in order to attain a healthy relationship— being authentic. You need to be yourself. Don’t pretend to be something or someone that you’re not. Let your partner fall in love with “the real you.” Feel good about yourself, be confident, and like who you are so that you’ll be self-aware enough to realize when you’re being your authentic self. There’s never a need to put on an act or to make yourself appear like some fake, better version of yourself or someone else than you actually are. Let your partner see the best and worst sides of you, and if anything, try not to filter your genuine thoughts and feelings to the point that you lose yourself. Nothing is sexier and more appealing than when someone is their authentic self, and when they actually like themselves enough to show you who they really are. Be the best version of yourself that you know how to be, and without feeling the need to impress anyone to the extent that it changes who you are at your core.


Be honest. Being honest is one of the most important things that all healthy relationships must have. There’s never a good reason to tell white lies or to keep your partner in the dark from what’s really going on, even if it’s in order to protect their feelings. Lying can become one of the most toxic and destructive things in relationships, and even more so, if a person tends to compulsively lie.


Trust your partner and give them the benefit of the doubt. Another thing that can be very destructive in relationships is being overly jealous or untrusting of your partner. You should never be in a relationship with someone that you don’t trust. Usually people that bring in baggage or wounds from their previous relationships from being cheated on or hurt in any way, tend to be untrusting the most. As well, many times people are untrusting of their partners, because they themselves, aren’t very trustworthy. Strange, I know, but it’s very true. People that tend to lie a lot also usually feel that others are lying to them, even when they’re not. Having said all of this, remember to trust your partner, not to bring in any issues from your past or from previous relationships, and to go into each and every situation with a blank, clean slate, giving your partner your trust. If you know that someone has a bad track record before you get into a relationship with them, think twice about getting into that relationship, because when someone tends to have a track record of being dishonest or cheating, it’s much harder to give them the benefit of the doubt.


Spend time with one another. If you’re busy and your schedule is crazy-hectic, then you’re going to have to “make the time” for your partner. You don’t need to make excuses as to why you’re too busy, because when someone actually wants to be with you, they’ll make it happen, they’ll put in the effort, and they’ll make the time for you. When someone loves you or even likes you for that matter, they’ll go out of their way for you, and will make it a point to bring you into their lives, because they’ll view you as important, valuable, and they’ll treat you as a priority.


Last but not least, and I’m well aware that this list could go on and on, but keeping the romance alive in your relationship is imperative if you want it to be a healthy one. Keep that spark, that fire, and that gust alive, by doing things that are romantic for one another. Show your partner that you love them through your words and your actions, and there should always be a healthy balance between the two. Both people in a relationship should understand how important it is to be balanced, to make time for one another, and to tell each other how much they care. Show your partner how much you love them with your words and your actions. Tell them that you love them, do sweet gestures—just because, and put effort into keeping the romance and fire alive in your relationship. Be spontaneous, thoughtful, and selfless. And remember that effort is much more valuable than the price of things. Therefore, money is no object when it comes to romance. Do sweet things for your partner because you want to, and not because you have to. 

Anne Cohen
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