Every relationship goes through different stages. When you are in the honeymoon phase, you feel perfect. Then come the ups and downs, the struggle to keep everything how they once were, and everything in between. With all these circumstances, have you ever wondered what does it take to make a relationship work?
Good relationships take hard work. These relationships last because the people involved chose to make them work. Sustaining a relationship is not for the weak-hearted. Do you know why? It is because as growing individuals, as well as a couple, you will constantly encounter change whether you like it or not.
With change comes adjustments that require two different individuals to make an effort to meet each other halfway in order for the relationship to move forward and succeed.
The Three Main Ingredients Of a Relationship
Relationships are a lot like recipes—you have to have the right ingredients to complete it. Below are the three important ingredients in any relationship:
This is a mutual feeling you share with another person that you have a special connection with. It doesn’t necessarily mean your lusting over someone, though. Instead, you like the person enough to make you feel interested to know him or her more.
Being compatible means that you share common interests, the same beliefs, and values. It also means that you support each other’s individuality and you feel safe with each other. Lastly, being compatible also means that you share enough similarities and opposites to get along.
The ability to talk openly about your concerns and your dreams as well as to voice out your desires and anything under the sun without being held back or judged is what honest communication is all about.
What Does It Take to Make a Relationship Work
Successful relationships are cared for and nurtured by committed adults who acknowledge the mutual benefits they receive from being part of one. Below are 8 essential tips you need to know if you want to create a healthy relationship that works for you and your significant other:
- Regularly evaluate your relationship
Every relationship require some sort of maintenance or check-up, much like cars have their routine checks. As an individual, you constantly change, develop, and grow, which may also affect your perspective regarding your relationship.
By checking in on your relationship, you give yourself and your partner the chance to express your current feelings. This is also the time to reflect on what behaviors or patterns you want to continue as well as the negative things that you want to change.
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- Appreciate each other
Remember when you were still dating—how you would get excited at the thought of spending time with your partner, and how you would compliment even the tiniest detail about him or her that you like?
Sadly, as couples get comfortable with each other, they unknowingly take their partners for granted. Since the need to win over a person has been accomplished, they lose the spark. However, when you actively appreciate each other, you keep the fire burning. You strengthen the bond.
Showing appreciation doesn’t need to be fancy, small efforts like complimenting her looks or her cooking, his being responsible in the house, his successes at work, etc. are enough. Do whatever it takes to keep the passion alive.
- Embrace each other’s individuality
Being in a relationship doesn’t mean that your world will only revolve around your relationship and your partner. Maintaining your individuality is very important as well. Always keep in mind that being happy starts within you.
Spend time with your own friends. Or better yet, maintain a hobby outside the relationship. Some alone time keeps you from getting burned out, and it also refreshes your spirit. At the same time, it teaches you to become self-reliant too.
Alternatively, you can also practice interdependence, which is when you are supportive of each other without compromising yourself for the relationship. Interdependence is finding the right balance between being together and finding time to take care of yourself.
- Accept conflicts
Disagreements happen even in healthy relationships, so don’t sweat the small stuff. What you need to learn is how to accept the fact that mistakes happen and be able to move forward without holding a grudge. No one’s perfect, not even you.
Moreover, you can’t change your partner. Learn to let go of the small stuff that doesn’t really matter. Instead, focus on the ones that matter, and that is your partner and the relationship that you two have.
- Communicate openly
Good communication is key to a successful relationship. Most of the time, relationships die from lack of communication. Openly communicating requires guts and honesty on your part and an open mind and listening ears on your partner’s, and vice versa.
Knowing what ticks off each other, likes, goals and dreams, frustrations, etc., can strengthen your relationship because you’ll be able to sort things out as a team.
- Be positive
Staying positive can be hard especially in times of trouble. However, this is the time that it’s crucial to think positive because your partner may be drawing his or her strength from your positive attitude. Also, with a positive attitude, you’re most likely to get along harmoniously with each other.
- Be honest about what you expect in the relationship
People have their own ideals on what they want in a relationship. Because no person is the same, these ideals may not be the same as well. So, voice out your expectations to make sure that you are on the same page. There’s no point in continuing a relationship that you know will only end up in failure.
- Trust your instincts
Sometimes, when your relationship is seriously struggling, you ask for your friends’ advice. Surrounding yourself with a reliable support system can be really helpful during times like these.
However, the possibility of getting more confused and flooded with contrasting opinions is very likely too. If this happens, pray and meditate. Clear your head and listen to what your instincts tell you.
- Be committed to loving each other unconditionally
Remembering to love each other can be hard when your relationship is on the verge of falling apart. However, when both parties are committed to loving each other despite the struggle, making a relationship work is always possible.
So, what does it take to make a relationship work? Well, for starters, a little TLC can go a long way. When you take care of a relationship and give it everything it needs to flourish, then it will thrive and grow—beautifully.