Like everything else you wish to succeed in, relationships require effort and investments. How is the health status of your relationship account? When you start an account, you always start off with such enthusiasm and with goals to grow this account into a healthy, strong one that will give you a happy future. The thing is, most people open their relationship account with eagerness like this, only to get lazy and procrastinate over time, leading the relationship onto an unhealthy path. Laziness will always set you up for failure, including your relationship. As a relationship matures and get older, the lazier a couple tends to get. You get so comfortable with each other, that you no longer bother to invest the time and efforts you did at the beginning. People often believe that if they are comfortable in their relationship, then everything is okay and/or will work itself out. Being comfortable, however, does not always mean your relationship is healthy. Being comfortable could simply mean that you and your partner are used to being together, as well as used to the way the relationship is- even if a relationship is lacking important things that could make it better. This happens so gradually sometimes, that a couple often does not know where things went wrong- and all they know is that their relationship went downhill and things do not feel the same anymore. The excitement is gone, the passion has faded and the communication has gone from strong to weak, making it difficult for a couple to work together once they do realize that their relationship is in trouble.
The following are some things you and your partner need to constantly invest to your relationship account if you want to maintain a healthy and loving relationship:
- Honesty. You have probably heard the famous saying- honesty is the best policy. Well, it really is! While the truth may not always be pleasant, it is always better to let your partner know what you are thinking and how you are feeling, rather than keeping it all inside of you and expecting your partner to read your mind. You also need to open and accepting of the truth your partner shares with you about yourself and the relationship over all. If you are not willing to hear the truth (and the truth can be painful sometimes), then you are not willing to fully experience the relationship as a whole- but instead choose to blind yourself from certain things because it makes life easier for you (or at least it will look that way to you). So invest honesty into your relationship every day throughout the whole year- being always honest with your partner and yourself.
- Respect. You and your partner can have extremely strong feelings for each other and may claim to love each other dearly and more than anything. Without respect however, that love will get lost in the big shadow of disrespect that will take over your relationship. Respect may seems like something that is only natural for you and your partner to have for each other and that if you love each other, then it will be very difficult to disrespect each other. This may be true in the beginning when things are new between you, but in time things change and requires maintenance. As a relationship matures and you and your partner spend more time together, you will experience different things and will learn new things about each other. Though the love you have for each other may be something you have in common, you two are still individual human beings with different habits, views, routines, interests and so on. You may not always like or agree with the way your partner handles things, believes things and says things- but you will have to accept and respect that this is who he/she is. If you cannot respect your partner and your partner does not respect you, then your relationship will not last- and if it does, it will grow into an unhappy relationship that will invite many other stressful and painful issues. Invest respect daily into your relationship and do not allow yourself to cross that line and enter the territory of disrespect. If you so, you and your partner will not see each other the same way.
- Expressions of Love. You may see this one as a given, but it is not. People tend to get a little too comfortable as time goes by in a relationship and become less concerned with expressing their love and admiration for their partner. This, majority of the time, is not intentional, but it does happen regardless of being intentional or not. People do this because they become too confident. They know they love their partner and that their partner loves them and use that as their security. While knowing that you love each other is great and powerful, it will not be enough to make your relationship last in a happy way. People need to know that they are loved and cherished and that they are not being taken for granted. Laziness is a persons worst enemy and it will cost you your relationship if you do not take the time to let your partner know that he/she is special and the love of your life. Tell your partner how much he/she means to you, write something thoughtful in card and give it to him/her, set a date to take him/her out someplace you know you two will truly enjoy and feel like a successful romantic couple. It does not require anything fancy to express your love to your partner and keep him/her satisfied, but the rewards for doing so will be wonderful and extremely beneficial to your relationship. Also remember, if your partner is not investing his/her share of efforts in showing you how much you mean to him/her, then you need to observe your relationship closely and give it a check up to see how healthy or unhealthy it really is. Talk to your partner about how you feel and give him/her time to make positive changes and improvements that will please you. If they lack to do so even after your honest communication, then you will need to ask yourself if you think you are with the right person. After all, you deserve to be with someone who will truly care about how you feel and will never want to disappoint or hurt you if they know they hold the power to make things different.
- Freedom. Give your partner freedom? Yes! Not the kind of freedom where you both are allowed to just go off and behave recklessly to towards the relationship, but freedom in a way that lets both you and your partner continue to be individuals. As a couple in a relationship you will be one, but outside that circle, you two will still be individuals who will need and want to continue to discover more about yourselves as people. You both will grow in time and you will get different callings in life, but in order for you to hear these callings and act on them, you and your partner need to give each other the freedom to do so. Do not cling to each other so tight that you cannot separate and be individuals and do not control your partner or allow your partner to control you. Controlling or being controlled is not love or an expression of how much your partner loves you. Control is selfish and is robbing a person from having a relationship with them selves. Invest freedom in your relationship and you and your partner will grow even closer together! You will have more to share with each other too.
Invest all of these into your relationship account and watch the interest grow. You and your partner will be happy and will earn the feeling of taking pride in your successful relationship.