Ideas from books, articles & podcasts.
Relationships exist as waves - we need to learn how to ride them. Some waves last for hours, some for months or even years. The key to success is to understand that few of those waves have anything to do with the quality of the relationship.
People lose jobs, family members die, couples relocate. You may go through times where you may not feel "in love" and times where you love your partner more than ever. Your job as a committed partner is to simply ride the waves with the person you love. Because in the end, none of these waves will last.
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Most successful couples don't resolve all their problems. It comes back to respecting your partner, who will have different values and perspectives on some things. The key here is to abide by the difference, love them despite it, and when things get a little rough, forgive them for it.
A relationship is not 50/50. We all have things we like to do and hate to do. We all have things we are good at and not so good at. One partner may work harder outside the home, and the other may have a more relaxed position.
The most common reason people cite why their marriage fail is that people marry someone for the wrong reasons, such as pressure from friends and family, being together for image, thinking that love will solve everything.
People who have been through divorces almost always say communication is the most important thing. But the thing people with happy marriages consider the most important is a deep respect for their partner as well as respect for themselves.
If there is a bedrock of respect for each individual's interests and values underpinning the relationship, each individual is encouraged to foster their own growth and development. Each individual will evolve in different and unexpected ways.
Relationships, like muscles, cannot get stronger without stress and challenge. You will have to fight at times and hash things out. However, it is essential to know how to fight.
If something bothers you in the relationship, you must be willing to say it out loud to your partner. Doing so builds trust, and trust creates intimacy. If you cannot trust, you cannot be trusted.
Romantic love, though able to make us feel ecstatic at times, is also irrational and temporary.
It is not your partner's responsibility to make you happy. Each one should figure out what makes them happy as an individual, then you both bring that to the relationship.
Don't ever stop doing the little things, such as saying "I love you"; holding hands during a movie; doing small favours here and there; helping with some household chores.
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