Relationships are one of Human’s most desired forms of intimacy. To have someone to love, share your dreams and aspirations, and ultimately call a life partner, is something most of us consider a blessing.
However, that’s not all it is; Relationships, even in their easiest forms, are hard work. Especially when you’re young, and still trying to figure things out.
That’s why, in honor of Valentines Day, I’ve put together a blog post with some things I’ve learned about being in a relationship during the past 3 ½ years. I believe if you have these things, you can foster a healthy relationship that’s not only fulfilling, but completely worth it.
1. Mutual Trust and Respect
Before anything else, trust and respect are the most important aspects of a relationship because they determine how you will respond to each other.
You want to be in a relationship where you feel heard and understood, where you know your partner is going to take you into consideration, and where you can assume best intentions.
When you have these things, you know you can come to each other with compassion and understanding, because you trust that your partner always has your best interest at heart.
You should always, at the very least, feel reassured in your relationship, and should work hard to make sure that your partner is reassured as well.
2. Similar Values
Something else that I feel has worked well for me and Myles, is having the same values when it comes to our views and outlooks on the world.
This is not to say you should have the same exact opinions on everything, however, your core ethics and morals should be in alignment.
Otherwise you may find that they think certain things are okay that you do not, and vice versa, and this can cause a strain on your perception of them, and/or the overall relationship.
Being on the same page when it comes to things will make your relationship that much more smooth sailing, especially when it comes to making decisions based on values.
I think the fact that me and Myles were good friends before getting into a relationship, makes the relationship that much more rich. He is literally my best friend, and I find that the most successful relationships operate this way.
Of course, it’s not pivotal that your relationship begins as a friendship, however, I think it’s an important aspect to incorporate before anything else.
This way, you don’t see your partner as this perfect person that you have to be on your best behavior around at all times, but someone that you’re comfortable with, knows you and all of your quirks and flaws, and loves you anyway.
4. Talk About Everything
Communicating is talking about any, and everything, including the things that you’re afraid too, are embarrassed about or think might even make you sound crazy.
When me and Myles first got together, we were just 19, and our perspectives on things have changed massively since then. In addition, things have been thrown our way that we never experienced before and have had to tackle it in a whole new way.
While every relationship will have their fair share of resentment or things left unsaid after being together for some time, it’s so important to communicate as you move forward so you can set boundaries, and figure out together what the next steps should be.
So even if you are being crazy or unreasonable about something, it’s something you can resolve together, and figure out what it is that’s making you feel that way. This way, at least you’ve talked about it, and are minimizing chances for resentment in the future.
5. Have a Life Outside of Eachother
No matter how much you love each other, your life should never revolve around one single person for the sake of sanity. Sometimes you just need some time for yourself, your own personal hobbies or goals, or your friends and that is completely okay.
Being your own person outside of your relationship is healthy for yourself and your relationship because it keeps you from being solely dependent on one another.
Your relationship should never be a distraction from the other things you value in life, but otherwise an asset/extension of it.
6. Do What Works Best For Your Relationship
With social media, it seems today that everyone has an opinion on how relationships should and should not operate. However, it’s so important to remember that that’s just what they are: opinions. Your relationship is your relationship and it should operate in ways that work best for you and your partner.
You guys are in charge of coming to an agreement and setting your own boundaries because it’s you guys that has to deal with the repercussions when boundaries are not set.
Twitter would flip out if they knew some of the things me and Myles have agreed on as okay or not okay for our relationship, but they are things that are healthy and beneficial for us, and that’s really all that matters.
7. Understand Each Other’s Love Language
It’s so important to constantly learn about your partner so you can minimize uncertainties, communicate better, and better serve each other in the relationship.
For example, me and Myles are extreme opposites in the sense that he’s extremely quiet, and I’m extremely talkative.
So when he’s being extra quiet, I have to remind myself that’s how he is. Oppositely, he works hard to give me more animated reactions because he knows sometimes that’s what I need.
When you understand each other’s love language, and work hard to accommodate them, it enhances the relationship, and makes for better overall interactions.
8. Be Each Other’s Biggest Fan
When you are in a relationship, you become each other’s primary support system. You might have friends and family, but your partner is who you are in constant communication with.
That’s why it’s so important to be each other’s moral support, and to work toward building up your dreams together.
Me and Myle’s are literally each other’s biggest fans and because of that, we feed off of each other’s energy and allow it to push us further in the directions we want to go.
Let your partner know, both through actions and emotional support that you have eachothers back. It feels good to know that you have someone on your team rooting you, and it makes your bond that much stronger knowing that you’re in this together.
9. Do Your Part
Like I’ve mentioned, relationships are hard work and it definitely takes both sides holding up their end of the bargain to see success.
With that being said, give as much as you take, and make sure to always do your part in the relationship.
That means being there for your partner, fulfilling their needs, and making sure they are getting as much satisfaction out of the union than you are.
Of course, it won’t be 50/50 every single day, but, going back to my first point, when both parties give equal effort, you feel more fulfilled in your relationship knowing your partner is trying as hard as you are, because the focus equally becomes satisfying each other, than just satisfying yourself.
10. Never Stop Trying to Make it Work
Anyone who’s in a relationship knows that they bring out the best and the worst parts of yourself. It’s natural and healthy to not love every single thing about each other. Nobody’s relationship is perfect.
You will disagree, have uncomfortable conversations, and have days where it just feels like you and your partner just aren’t on the same wavelength.
However, the right one reflects back to you things about yourself, and you will constantly have to work on the relationship, by working on yourself.
So periodically check in with your partner, ask them if they’re still happy, be grateful and appreciative of even the small things, and remember that it is a joint effort to keep this thing going.
It’s when both parties put their best foot forward and refrain from giving up in tough times, that they can maintain a healthy and successful relationship.
With that being said, a healthy relationship is about having someone to laugh and share memories with, to build with, and to know you’re not alone. But it’s also about sharing yourself with another person, learning to compromise, learning things not just about them, but yourself, and putting your pride aside to make it work.
When both of you are trying your best, the ups and down are worth it.
Happy Valentines Day!