Love is undoubtedly the most important aspect of any relationship, but it is not enough by itself. To nurture a fulfilling relationship, to become trusted and loving partners for life, both of you have to put in considerable time and effort. I will be discussing with you the 5 keys that are fundamental to the success of any marriage or relationship.
BRACE YOURSELF UP FOR CHALLENGES: Relationships do come with ups and downs. Life as we all know isn’t a bed of roses, so expecting your relationship to be smooth sailing is like building castles in the air! Don’t kid yourself, there will be challenges, difficulties, ups and downs. Don’t expect to be happy all the time. Be open to disappointments, be prepared for setbacks too and use them as an opportunity to know your partner better. This is particularly relevant for long-distance relationships, as lack of physical presence increases friction. A positive attitude during such difficult times leads to happier and healthier relationships.
UNDERSTAND, ACCEPT AND APPRECIATE: Make sure you put in the time and effort to understand your partner very well. This is very important. Know what the other person likes to do and also keep in mind that preferences and priorities change. Accept your partner the way he or she is, and appreciate their actions, attributes and habits. If there is anything you aren’t comfortable with, draw his/her attention to it, sit down and dialogue. According to David Richo, the author of How to Be an Adult in a Relationship: the Five Keys to Mindful Loving, the two essential ingredients for a loving relationship are acceptance and appreciation. He says, “We do not tell a birch tree to look like an elm. We face it with no agenda, only appreciation.” Relationships work the same way. In a true relationship, mindfully and non-intrusively accept your partner with all of his or her positive and negative qualities.
IT ALWAYS OUGHT TO BE “WE”, NOT “I” OR “YOU”: One of the surest ways to strenghten your relationdhip is by creating a strong bond. When you refer to you and your partner as “we”, you are subconsciously considering both of you to be a single entity. This simple word enhances bonding and trust in a big way – even if your partner is not physically around. In fact, a study conducted by the University of California, Berkeley shows that couples who used the word “we” tend to be calmer, happier and more satisfied with their relationship when compared to those who use “you” or “I.”. It creates bonding and a strong sense of belonging.
ALWAYS SHOW APPRECIATION AND GRATITUDE: When you start feeling grateful for the things that your partner says and does, your relationship is sure to blossom. Research shows that gratitude reduces feelings of hate and pain as you tend to focus only on the positive side of your partner. Nothing is too little or trivial for you to show appreciation for, infact it’s showing appreciation for those little things that is more cool. So if she helps you adjust your tie, thank her, if she hugs you, collects your laptop and helps you remove you shoes when you return from work,thank her and tell her that she’s such a darling. Hold on! Sisters you too! When he helps you change baby’s pampers, thank him, when he helps you wash your clothes, thank him, when he helps you to remove soup from the freezer and warms it before you get home from work, remind him that he is a darling anyday! Such positive feelings go a long way in maintaining relationships.
EXPLORE NEW AVENUES: Most times, issues such as infidelity start creeping into relationships when one or both get bored of the routine. To invigorate your relationship, give it a spark, explore new places, try new activities together, laugh with each other. Do something ridiculous or do just about anything together that makes both of you happy. It’s very important so as to keep the fire burning. It also keeps your level of affection for each other high. So break away from your routine, go to the beach, go watch a movie at the cinema, just do something exciting. Itmakes your relationship more fulfilling. Such actions create a sense of excitement that you and your partner will look forward to.