People often say they want to work on their relationship, but most people don’t realize how much work and effort it actually takes to do that. The good news is there are many, many ways you can build and maintain a great relationship, and there really is no “right” or “wrong” way.
While there are many qualities that can make up strong and healthy relationships, I’ve condensed that list to the few you need to master first. Here are the five vowels of building a successful relationship:
Showing your partner affection, giving them the attention they need, is crucial.
There are so many ways to show affection: holding your partner’s hand, sitting close to each other while watching TV, showing them love randomly or unexpectedly. Building that connection and showing your partner that you care for them is a requirement. Don’t fall behind on this one.
Empathy is a quality that has many characteristics. And it is a quality that can be learned—one that can help deepen the connection in your relationship.
You have to genuinely be interested in how your partner feels and understand the way they see certain things. Not showing empathy in your relationship will cause your partner to question whether you really care or not. You can start showing empathy by listening and interacting from a genuine standpoint, by offering to help in their time of need, or just by opening up to them. Finding the emotional connection is important to being empathetic in your relationship.
Having integrity in general is a very honorable quality, but having integrity in your relationship is just as important. Having integrity helps open you up to your vulnerabilities, which in turn helps build a strong relationship.
Being honest with each other is a way that builds trust in your relationship. Always doing what you say you are going to do, doing everything you can to fulfill that promise, will go a long way.
Communication and being open with your partner is probably the most important one of all. It is important for your partner to be updated on how you are feeling and what you are thinking.
The best way to be open with your partner is to tell them how you are feeling as soon as that feeling arises. Don’t wait to see if it goes away. Talk about it and communicate with each other so you can start working on solving that problem. Waiting to see if the problem will fix itself is the worst idea.
We are all different and we all have a different point of view. Understanding what is important to your partner and understanding your partner’s way of thinking is something that you have to be able to do.
You may not see a certain situation the way your partner does, but you need to understand that they see it differently and you need to support that. Being understanding in your relationship can look like this: Your partner tells you she feels like she does everything in the relationship and that you hardly do anything. Instead of taking it as a personal attack, understand how she came to that conclusion and be willing to change the way she feels about it. It is important to understand why our partner feels a certain way and then do something about it.
Which one of these five qualities do you have trouble with the most in your relationship and why?