Is it possible to have a satisfying relationship that promotes the esteem and delight of both partners? Relationships that thrive and endure hard times are not successful simply because there is love between the couple. Some relationships can provide great fun, yet be very dysfunctional. Some relationships seem to work like a thriving business, yet are stale and flat in the fun department.
In times of emotional stress and financial turmoil, relationships can still be functional and fun! Here are some key qualities of functional and fun relationships, and specific actions you can take today to make positive changes in your relationship.
Nurturance: Love and Respect
Nurturance in relationships includes ongoing endorsements of the other person, rather than attempts to fix or change them. Individuals involved in lasting relationships love each other even when their partner doesn’t seem too lovable. Partners in successful relationships believe in each other, and find ways to demonstrate that confidence. Take every opportunity to congratulate each other on even the smallest achievements. Demonstrating love and respect toward your partner will create a strong core for a lasting connection.
Honesty: Trust and Communication
Relationships that really work endorse open communication and mirror complete trust. Trust that your partner will hold your interest in the same regard as they hold their own. Successful partners find great comfort in being honest about their wants, desires and disappointments. Listening well is a gift that encourages honesty and trust.
When personal interests and feelings are withheld from each other, there is no glue to bind the relationship. Trust and communication go hand-in-hand. A lack of honesty ensures weak communication and minimal trust, which are ingredients for a relationship lacking in function and fun.
Resolution: Conflict and Resiliency
All relationships experience times of crisis and challenge. Surviving times of transition means change and growth. Without a mutual resolution and a plan to handle tough times, marriages and relationships can destruct.It is helpful to have a method for problem-solving together. Have a “can do” approach to conflict, and talk through disagreements. Learn to replace hurtful words with words that build and strengthen the relationship. Having a forward-looking attitude, minus a critical spirit, promotes a resilient and successful relationship.
Maintenance: Participation and Responsibility
Some couples believe once they tie the knot, the fun begins and responsibility ends. Functional and fun relationships need maintenance, just like your house, car and body. Both partners should take daily ownership and actively participate in the joint success of being a couple. Partners should continually ask themselves what they can do to better the relationship. Individuals who only look to each other for sources of happiness will be disappointed. Be active and responsible partners, and the fun times will follow!
If you or someone you love needs help, contact Centerstone at 888-291- HELP (4357) or visit www.centerstone.org.
If you are in crisis, call Centerstone’s 24-Hour Crisis Intervention Hotline at 800-681-7444