I really like this guest post from author Christine Brondyke, who conveys the essentials of a happy relationship perfectly.
Happy relationships don’t just happen through luck, they are made. To have a happy relationship, all you need is a clear intention to create an amazing connection and intimacy with your partner and some simple tools.
Focus on your individual health and happiness. Happy relationships exist when each partner feels happy in their own right–when they know how to take care of their own emotional, physical, and mental health, and do so reliably.
Practice the art of authentic communication. It’s hard to have a happy relationship if your partner doesn’t know what you want, or how you feel. If you focus on expressing your feelings, without adding blame or criticism, you’ll have less fights and more connection.
Practice the art of appreciation. Successful relationships have a 5 to 1 ratio of appreciation to criticism. That includes the criticism you think in your head, but don’t say out loud! What you put your attention on grows, so if you’re always noticing what’s wrong with your partner, you’ll continue to see more of the bad stuff. If you put your attention on what they do well, you’ll see lots more of the good.
Give yourself permission to give yourself what you want, when you want it. One of the biggest mistakes people make in relationships is trying to provide for their partner’s happiness by sacrificing their own. It never works, and usually leads to resentment and exhaustion. The only one who can truly give you happiness is you.
Occasionally check in with each other to find out if the relationship is working for both of you. Honesty here is the key. You can’t fix something if you don’t know about the problem. We all feel disgruntled, or overworked from time to time, if you let your partner know what’s happening, you can work together to change it.
What do you think the keys are to a happy relationship?