A stable, long-lasting relationship is what most of us seek, particularly a romantic relationship with a partner we may want to share our lives with.
Psychology Today says that the ability to initiate and maintain loving relationships is not innate. Patterns that shape how we do this start during infancy and childhood. They form through our earliest experiences with caregivers that meet our needs for food, safety and social stimulation.
Relationships last or fail for a variety of reasons, but most of us have to put out effort to maintain them. Read on to check if you do what it takes to make your relationship strong.
1) You think positive thoughts about your mate, and help each other.
That means focusing on the good aspects versus the qualities that make you crazy. Such as, your partner may leave his socks on the floor, but he is also the one who does the laundry.
One of you cooks and the other cleans.
So when you think about your partner, you may acknowledge that there are things that irritate you. But you automatically fill in the other activities you appreciate about him, and you don’t complain if he doesn’t do them the way you do.
2) You think about your partner when you're apart.
This doesn't mean obsessively wanting to know where they are at all times but more, looking forward to when you may see them again. This also means making an effort to look for, and perhaps buy, things your partner likes.
So if you are grocery shopping, you make sure to pick up those items your know your partner enjoys eating. Or if you see something online you think they might like, you send them a link with a sweet note that you thought they would enjoy seeing it.
3) You want to be affectionate and have an active sex life.
Different couples have different ways of showing affection. It may be holding hands, a hug and a kiss when parting or seeing each other after a long day, or a little squeeze on the bottom.
“Feeling a warm, tingling sensation from your partner’s physical presence is enough to keep the fire inside stoked until the time is right for sexual activity,” Psychology Today says.
They go on to say that being turned on by your partner and having a sexual relationship has been found to build and maintain love over time.
4) You don’t try to control one another.
“Feeling controlled is one of the most common—40 percent, in one study—relationship complaints,” according to Psychology Today.
The trick here is that one person may feel they are being affectionate and caring, not controlling. It takes good communication to clarify what each of you needs, so as not to overreact to each other's behaviors.
5) You both can admit when you made a mistake.
This one can be really hard to do. If you find it difficult to say you made a mistake, you can admit that you are sorry that you had a disagreement. You can say that you understand why it made the other person feel bad. It is most important that you sound like you mean it.
6) You are willing to work on fixing mistakes.
Lifehack says that we live in a world where we throw away anything that is broken, and no longer make the effort to fix it. This is OK to do with a broken iPhone, but relationships always need work.
You and your partner are willing to put out the effort it takes when something is not running smoothly.
Michele is an R.N. freelance writer with a special interest in woman’s healthcare and quality of care issues.
1) All About Relationships. Psychology Today. Retrieved Jan. 10, 2016.
2) The 12 Ties that Bind Long-Term Relationships. Psychology Today. Retrieved Jan. 10, 2016.
3) You're Driving Me Crazy! Psychology Today. Retrieved Jan. 10, 2016.
4) 7 Signs Of A Relationship That Will Last. Life Hack. Retrieved Jan. 10, 2016.
Edited by Jody Smith
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