Healthy relationships are based on friendship. Couples are always asking for help with communication, respect and intimacy. And, I always tell them to work on rebuilding the friendship. Studies show that a good friendship is essential in a relationship. When you have a good friendship the rest will follow. The following tips can help you create and maintain a healthy relationship:
- Speak up. Just like you would with a friend. When something is bothering you, it's best to say something about it instead of holding it in.
- Accept influence from your partner. Your partner's wishes and feelings have value. Take time to hear them out and try them. Let your partner know the effort you are making to keep their ideas in mind. This will also show that you respect your partner, which will help build the friendship.
- Compromise. Disagreements are a natural part of any relationship. It is important to resolve conflicts in a fair and rational way. When you are working on a compromise stay away from being critical and defensive with one another.
- Be supportive. Encourage your partner. Spend time talking about your dreams with your partner. Healthy relationships are about building each other up, not putting each other down.
- Respect your partner's boundaries. Just because you're in a relationship doesn't mean you have to share everything and constantly be together. It's important that you have time for your friends, hobbies, exercise, etc.