Make time for each other
Life can get busy and hectic, but be sure not to neglect your relationship in the process. Do this by spending time together on a regular basis. Go out with friends or plan a date night on your own. Take the time to do hobbies, sports, or other activities together. If you’re not in the mood to go out, spend some quality time at home cooking or playing a card game.
Keep up your communication skills
Good communication skills play an essential role in healthy relationships. No one is a mind reader, so if you expect your partner to guess what you’re thinking, you’ll end up disappointed. Make sure you voice your wants and needs and discuss your feelings. As listening is integral to good communication, make sure you also listen to your partner.
Although good communication is very important, some people need a bit of help in that department. Even the best communicators might shut down at times. Make sure you ask lots of questions to show interest in your partner’s life and feelings. These can be simple, such as asking about his or her day, or more specific, such as asking about how an important meeting went.
Even though it’s important to take interest in your partner’s life, it’s important not to take that interest too far. As you know, everyone needs some level of privacy. Do not read his or her personal emails, social media messages, or text messages. Resist the urge to dig into his or her personal belongings, even if you live together. Trust is the principle of any relationship.
Everyone has different comfort levels within a relationship. Thus, it’s important to set boundaries. Talk about things like how much alone time you each need and how to know when one of you needs some space. You should both be comfortable with the boundaries that you set. Once you agree on these, it’s crucial that you respect them.
Even if you don’t live together, it’s important to divide responsibilities early on. These can include things like housework, cooking, and childcare for married couples. Dating couples can divide the bill at dinner, for example. Gender doesn’t assign responsibility anymore, so make sure you agree on who does what. Once you’ve come up with a plan you’re both happy with, make sure you stick to it.
You can’t always get what you want, especially in a relationship. Ideally, you should make decisions that are win-win, meaning that they work for both of you. Realistically, that usually means that each of you will have to give in a little bit in order to come to an agreement you are both comfortable with.
Discuss money matters
Many people think that talking about money should come late in a relationship, but doing so can spell trouble. That doesn’t mean that you have to talk about your personal debt levels on your first date, but you should ease into it as you get to know each other. Early on, you should gage each other’s spending habits and how you split costs. Later, you can go into issues such as budgeting and debt.
Show lots of support
Getting through tough times is much easier when you don’t have to go it alone. Likewise, it’s much easier to reach your goals when you have someone cheering you from the sidelines. Showing support and making sure that you feel supported helps create the foundation for a healthy relationship.
Respect each other
Last, but not least, make sure you respect each other. Value your partner as a person, as well as his or her feelings, and his or her wants and needs. At the same time, make sure you feel respected. Feeling disrespected can be poisonous and spell disaster for a relationship. In the same vein, make sure you have a healthy level of trust for one another.
Strong, healthy relationships are built on things like trust, communication, and respect. If you work on these aspects of your relationship, you can build a solid foundation that withstands the test of time.