For a relationship to stay strong and connected in this generation’s tumultuous dating culture, healthy habits must be formed and maintained within that relationship. Happy, healthy couples aren’t lazy or boring in their relationships. They don’t let days turn into weeks without a date night out, and they don’t bitch about every little thing that bothers them about the other, either. They celebrate each other, they’re open with each other and they continue to surprise each other with romantic gestures. It’s not always easy to maintain the peace in a relationship, but some couples are better than others when it comes to putting forth the effort required. Here are 8 things healthy and happy couples do to keep their bond strong and continuing to grow together in the long-term.
1. They still go out on real dates. No matter how long they’ve been together or how comfortable they are with each other, they haven’t stopped going out on real dates together. The healthiest couples will continually come up with new ideas for a unique date to go on together, whether it’s getting dressed up and going out for dinner at a hot new restaurant, or taking a drive to a secluded beach to watch the sunset and enjoy a romantic picnic. If keeping the spark alive is something you’re into, exciting and fun dates are a must.
2. They communicate well with each other. Communication doesn’t just require a standard of honesty and openness – it also requires empathy, and an ability to be direct and straightforward with your partner rather than beating around the bush. Healthy couples have no problem being direct and very honest with each other. They avoid being passive and will always tell each other when something’s bothering them. If one partner receives criticism, rather than getting defensive they’ll try their best to adapt so that their partner remains happy. If someone wants something in the relationship – something they’re not currently getting – they have no problem being upfront about it. Keeping it bottled up inside is just way too dangerous. The healthiest couples know when texting is a bad idea, and they’ll pick up the phone and call each other long before a text fight gets out of hand.
3. They celebrate each other’s accomplishments, big or small. Accomplishments achieved, goals reached, or any step in the right direction should always be acknowledged and celebrated. A good partner in a healthy relationship will recognize this. Whether something big or small happens, if it’s good news it should be celebrated. Healthy couples will take one another out for a celebratory dinner, or buy flowers – anything they can do to say ‘congratulations’ with actions and not just words keeps the relationship going strong.
4. They share common interests. If you both enjoy similar hobbies and you share common interests, you have a real shot at making your relationship last. Going to the gym together every Tuesday and Thursday, hiking together, or reading in bed together every night are all good options Even something as simple as cuddling up on the couch together and watching a series you both enjoy on Netflix is a great thing to share. All of these shared hobbies can strengthen your bond as a couple.
5. They surprise each other. An amazing quality in a partner is their desire to still surprise you with romantic gestures. Gestures such as a homemade dinner with candlelight, a thoughtful gift or a romantic note should not be lost once the honeymoon phase is over. These are the types of gestures that are necessary for any relationship to last, as they help your partner stay happy and continually feel loved.
6. They enjoy spending time with each other’s friends and families. A healthy quality in a relationship is the ability to truly enjoy spending time with your partner’s friends and family members. You don’t dread every family dinner, drafting up an excuse to skip out. You get along with their friends, and plan group outings consistently. Sometimes it requires organization to plan a group get-together or a weekend getaway with each other’s friends but neither of you mind, since it’s always fun to get away with a group and it’s important to not only spend time one-on-one.
7. They genuinely get excited for each other and listen to each other. It’s not just about listening when the other speaks to you, it’s about genuine reactions as well. If your significant other is sharing good news, genuinely get excited for them! If you seem bored or disinterested, they may re-think how healthy your relationship actually is.
8. They pick their battles. It’s important that you don’t nag your partner about every little things that bothers you. Even if something they said or did slightly upsets you, sometimes you just have to let it go without saying a word. Save your ‘nagging’ for when something really bothers you, otherwise you’ll end up being the bothersome one 99% of the time.
Image credit: Samantha Sayer Photography
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