The key to a healthy relationship is communication, respect and quality over quantity!
Let me make it clear that I am not trained or qualified by the state to say any of this. This is from experience and personal opinion. So some of you will not agree with me.
I see on here quite often; how do I get a girl to like me? Is he/she cheating on me? Do guys/girls really like this? Let's clarify the endless anxiety and worry that we all deal with on a daily basis. WHAT MAKES A RELATIONSHIP AND HOW DO I MAINTAIN THE SPARK!?
Before we get started, let me show you something that might be a new concept to you but is often a big piece of most counseling or conferences when it comes to mending or rebuilding a broken relationship.
THIS IS NOT LIMITED TO ONE PER INDIVIDUAL! Many people often have a few of these
A gift often says, “He was thinking about me. Look what he got for me.” This typically is required for people who are not good with or don't understand love and affection without something physical being introduced. A gift to one person might have the same affect as saying "I Love You" or "You are so Beautiful"
Typically those who require Quality Time are not the type of people who would seek or need a gift to feel loved. This does not mean that this person can't require both, it's just not as common. Quality Time is more than just hanging out and having fun, this is an act of Intimacy often even more affective than the actual act of Sex. Quality time often doesn't mean "Netflix and Chill", but more something that helps build the connection or chemistry.
Words of Affirmation:
This one is very simple and I would say is most common. Most people without realizing it crave this, unless they are extremely independent on their own. Words of affirmation is summed up with Building a person up and showing gratitude for even the little things. Something as simple as acknowledging that your partner took out the garbage, or maybe being grateful and thanking them for folding the laundry. Simple things that should be regular comments in a healthy relationship that are often much more important than you know.
Acts of Service (Devotion):
This kind of falls in line with Words of Affirmation but on the opposite side. This is not being a slave or being submissive for those out there who would assume this. Acts of Service is a direct as doing little things that you know your partner would like. For a Women; something as simple as folding the laundry, taking out the trash, doing the dishes or cleaning up the kids mess (EVEN AFTER YOUR LONG DAY AT WORK) For a Man, depending on the type of man he is, it could be as simple as leaving out his clothes for the day or making him a lunch when you make the kids a lunch. Sometimes it could be something a little bigger and being okay with him and the kids eating in front of the T.V without nagging him about him not being active with the family, the second he walked in the door.
Now this is not limited or strictly stuck on Sexual Intercourse, but I will admit it is a piece of it.
Physical Touch is a pretty big one to most people, there are people out there though who hate being touched so make sure you know your partner before you do this one.
Physical Touch is easily the simplest and yet the least talked about of all the Love Languages. There is nothing about it that's complicated it just often gets forgotten when the relationship has aged and life has become the primary focus again. But things as basic as holding hands in public, giving hugs, kissing, or randomly offering a shoulder rub without having to be asked can make a dramatic change in the way your relationship feels.
Life seems to get hard, you have kids, you start to settle down and a lot of the intimacy of the relationship seems to disappear. But that is no excuse to not show even the smallest amount of intimacy on a daily basis.
Many people really struggle when it comes to Communication in their relationships, and more often than not, this is the reason why relationships tend to end. Let me walk you through a few simple things you can do to help keep the relationship alive and strong.
Choose your Battles and Compromise:
It is very common for people to think that they are communicating in their relationship when really this is just a battle for power. You choose to be stubborn and Battle with your partner instead of relaxing and trying to understand what is going on. We often try to see who is most dominant or try the intimidation tactic. Don't get me wrong, fighting is a very common and often needed though not wanted part of a relationship. But there is a time and place to call a recess on your fight. Its important to resolve issues in the relationship but sometimes it can't be done when you want it to happen. You need to be able to step away and set a later date. This does mean set a date, dont just call a recess and let the resentment build up. It could be later that day or maybe one evening that week, but a date must be set and a resolution must be made.
Be Genuine and Sincere:
Your partner is your Best Friend, not just some friend or acquaintance. This means asking "How was your day" is out of the question and should be thrown away with the Wednesday morning trash. You need to ask questions that are specific to ones needs or desires. Make it personal and intimate, being direct with your questions. Ask something like, "Was there anything in your day today that really made you happy/sad"? Maybe in the morning someone said they had a place to be or someone to meet (Potentially a friend). Ask them directly if they made it to their appointment on time and if there was anything that came out of it , or maybe if they enjoyed seeing their old friend. Simple conversation that leads to more than a "it was fine and yours" might not always be something you feel like doing but it keeps the intimacy in the relationship and doesn't leave you wondering in the back of your mind what are they doing when you are not around.
Never Stop Studying your Partner:
The day you stop learning about your partner is the day that your relationship starts to fade. When you first get into a relationship the first thing you do is study them, ask a million questions and try to find common ground. Things you can do together or ways to keep the conversation going. But as a relationship progresses you, you ask fewer questions, pay attention less and quit learning things about your partner. (NOT ALWAYS BUT SOMETIMES) there are many times, when this lack of studying or learning is when your relationship ends and you dont even notice it.
How many times have you or maybe people you know say that their partner left them because someone made them feel special again, that they really seemed to understand me, that when I am with them I feel young again? This happens because what brought you together in the first place stops being what keeps you together and you start to run on auto pilot. It only takes one person one conversation to feel that connection that you secretly have been craving all this time. So make it your goal no matter how many years you have been with your partner to never stop learning, to always be seeking more information and finding out things you never knew before. Not only will this keep things fresh and interesting but it will also help you find new ways to interact with each other that isn't the same old thing you have always done.
REMEMBER RELATIONSHIPS ARE NOT MENT TO BE EASY, OR EVERYONE WOULD HAVE ONE AND WE WOULD ALL LIVE HAPPILY EVER AFTER. That being said, it is good to have friends or mentors you can trust. sometimes you need the help of an outsider to keep you level headed and clear minded.
Respect is that even a thing anymore, do people still have that for one another? Does you respect your partner, and appreciate them?
Without going into to much detail on this, let me just point out a few things that are very important and help keep the respect in your relationship.
Time apart/ privacy/ boundaries:
Relationships are a journey that are supposed to last forever, that being said sometimes you are gonna need your alone time. If that means, hanging with the friends, getting the afternoon or evening to yourself to evaluate and just grow by yourself, it is alright and is needed to build a strong relationship.
Privacy is a tough one, and typically a big issue. Some relationships are all about no secrets, no passwords and access to everything all the time. Other relationships are all about my business is my business and your business is yours. Which ever choice the two of you make you need to respect each other enough to follow that and communicate properly if you feel that there is a reason to not be trusted.
Everyone has boundaries, and it is important to respect the boundaries that your partner has. If that is what you do or don't do/say in public, how fast you move in the relationship, or when you can or can't talk for whatever reason that might be. if you set up these boundaries from the very start it makes it so much easier to keep the peace and decrease the wonder of what is going to happen next or how I should react.
This one is pretty big but often overlooked. I am going to just make this short and sweet. The last thing and the least respectful thing you can do in a relationship is to compare your partner to anybody or anything. They don't want to hear how you do or don't compare up to their ex, how you do or don't do something that you had an ex do. or even worse how you remind them of their parents, friends or exs in anything that makes them who they are.
Now there are some exceptions to this; and should be considered from the very start. If you have things in your life that have become a stand way of living, if that means your health or the way you and your family interact. Sometimes it is important to compare the way that you are to a family member or how a family member does things. or maybe compare how a friend and you have a certain type of relationship that you don't want them to follow so that you make them unique.
Quality over Quantity, this is very short, very sweet and to the point without needing much more detail.
From day one you spent most of your time trying to have the best dates, have the most fun and keep things exciting. Sadly as time goes on this seems to be less important and you fall into a rut. well to keep that spark in your relationship you need to get out of that rut and stay out. Go back to the old days, if you had something you both loved to do but feel like you might be to old now, or maybe that was childish or something you can't see yourself doing anymore. Maybe that is the exact thing you need to do to start that fire up again and keep things rolling. If that isn't something that you can do or want to do but you need to find something to keep your relationship going or to rekindle the fire, maybe consider doing things the other person enjoys regardless if you think you will enjoy it as well. (Just make sure you have a positive attitude while doing it) You never know, you might love it and now have a new fun thing to do together. Maybe you won't like it but its just one piece of a never ending journey. The point isn't to like everything that you do together even though that would be nice. the point to trying new things and making new experiences is that you want to have those moments to look back on. Life is about making the most of every opportunity not having as many as you can. Good or bad, a moment you can have with your partner is what strengthens it and allows you to never stop learning about one another
I hope that this was helpful, and that this helps some of you or even just one of you figure out what you need or want or what is missing.
Sorry that towards the end it became a little less intimate and a little more just get the info out. but I was on word limit to what I could write and I had so much I wanted to say and not enough time or space...