How to make the most out of your relationships

 

Love is much deeper than a feeling. Love is a commitment we make to people to always treat that person right and honourably.
–Jim Rohn

 

Relationships make the world go around. For better or for worse. The exciting thing is that we can do a lot to increase our chances of having fabulous relationships—relationships that are rewarding and stimulating, rich with significance, happiness and love.

Here are what I believe are the essentials of healthy relationships:

 

A common purpose

Chasing a common purpose by working together, creating together, failing and succeeding are what relationships are made of.

A serving heart

Focus on serving other people.

Life is best lived in service to others. It also means that we strive for the best for ourselves. It doesn’t mean ignoring our own desires. It does mean that in all things we serve other people, including our family, work colleagues and friends.

Love your partner

Love is not a feeling in my opinion. It is a commitment we make to people to always treat that person right and honourably.

Show loyalty

We need to persevere more and not give up so easily with our relationships! We need to have greater ‘stick ability’. In today’s throw away culture, if we are not happy with something or someone it’s easier to stop trying and get rid of it or find a replacement.  By sticking by someone, even when it’s hard we can take our relationship to a much higher, more intense level. How empowering is the feeling of knowing that you are in a relationship with someone who shows loyalty to you and you reciprocate that loyalty to them—that neither of you is going anywhere even when things get hard.

Authentic communication

Express your love for one another, saying “I love you” and by offering genuine compliments to one another often. Talk through the bad instead of sweeping issues under a rug. For relationships to move forward and grow, you need to be able to authentically talk about your feelings.

Nurture patience

Patience comes from a place of love and respect for other people. It doesn’t mean that we are weak. It doesn’t mean that we just take it when someone is abusive or creates problems for us. We need to express how this affects us and do it from a place of love. In this way, we are patient in order to see a positive change or outcome. It is working as hard and long as necessary to solve problems and repair relationships.

Have fun

Researchers at the University of Denver found that couples, who made time to have fun together, were happier and stayed together for longer. It doesn’t mean rescheduling your life and spending large quantities of money. It can be as easy as trying something new, embracing your inner comic, being playful and feeling like children together again.

Understand your partners love language

Gary Chapman came up with the concept that men and women have five love languages. People have unique ways of feeling loved. Some people like hearing words of affirmation, or receiving gifts, spending quality time together, helping each other out, while others appreciate physical touch. It’s important to know which love language speaks to you, along with your partner. Telling each other what makes you feel loved and special helps both of you stay connected.