Having a happy and successful relationship can be a struggle. It seems that all too often, our relationships go downhill over time, and we are left to wonder “why can’t things just be the way they used to be?”.
Foundations are the key to maintaining all the goodness in your relationship. They will determine the quality and success of your relationships years down the track.
“A house must be built on solid foundations if it is to last. The same principle applies to man” – Sai Baba
If you use the following foundations in your relationship, you will have an incredibly long-lasting, happy and successful relationship.
1. Laugh together
Laughter is a very powerful thing!
Did you know that laughter is even used as a form of therapy? This is because it has such a positive effect on us.
When you laugh with your partner, it shows that you enjoy each others company, feel positive towards one another and actually “like” each other.
“It is impossible for you to be angry and laugh at the same time. Anger and laughter are mutually exclusive and you have the power to choose either”. – Wayne Dyer
That’s right, laughter is a choice! And it involves choosing to feel happy towards each other, and not angry or negative.
All too often you see couples who are never happy when they are together. They have become frustrated and are used to each other. And sadly, they lose the excitement and the appreciation they once shared for each other.
If you can relate to this, and would like to bring life and joy back into your relationship, then chose laughter.
Choose to make your partner laugh at least once a day.
If you want to, you can even think of it as relationship therapy, since laughing is a real form of therapy!
2. Know each others love language
Did you know that we all have different love languages?
Love languages are the different ways that we all communicate and understand love.
Your love language and that of your partner can be as different as Chinese and English!
So it is absolutely essential that you learn your partners love language.
“We must be willing to learn our spouses love language if we are to be effective communicators of love” – Dr Gary Chapman
Here is an example of the importance of understanding your partners love language:
If your love language is physical touch, a kiss will speak louder than 1000 words – but,
If your love language is words of affirmation, one kind or affirming word will speak louder than 1000 kisses
You might be showing love to your partner in every way that you know how and still, they might be telling you that you don’t love them enough. Well, it’s no secret anymore! You need to learn their love language.
3. Understand love as an action
As you can probably tell from the above point, love is an action.
Love is understanding how your partner feels loved, and then doing it.
People often think that love is a feeling, and that once the feeling disappears – there is little hope for their relationship.
Well it’s absolutely not true!
“Love is a verb. Love – the feeling – is a fruit of love, the verb” – Stephen Covey
This quote shows us that “feeling in love” is just as much of a choice as “Loving as an action”.
When you choose to love your partner (even if they didn’t do anything to deserve it), you are showing them real love. Love, that is unconditional and that does not rely on them loving you first.
You view “love as a feeling”, you will both be waiting and waiting – and you still won’t “feel it”.
So understand love as an action and a choice, and then do it! You will have an incredibly happy and fulfilling relationship because of it.
4. Don’t cross the line
This is one of the most important things to remember for a happy and successful relationship.
There are certain things that we never want to say or do to our partner. These are things that you would consider “crossing the line”.
Maybe for you “crossing the line” means:
Losing your temper
Yelling or screaming at your partner
Saying I hate you
Saying something unkind to your partner
Using manipulation to get what you want
Going to sleep while being angry at your partner
Not saying sorry when you know you should have
Getting aggressive towards your partner
Bringing your partner down because you were angry
These are all damaging things for a relationship, but if you ask any child “Do your parents do any of these things” most of them would probably say yes to a number of them.
My theory is – that once you “cross the line”, it becomes easier and easier to do it again and again.
You might not like to do those things but in the heat of an argument – if you have already said “I hate you” once before, it becomes a LOT easier to say it again.
If you want a happy and successful relationship, try really hard to not “cross the line”.
Your relationship will be so much better off for it and you will stand a better chance at actually “liking each other” years down the track.
5. Apologize often
We all make mistakes. We all say and do damaging things to our relationship.
We are simply human.
Successful relationships rely on us admitting when we are wrong and then moving past it.
Apologizing makes the process of moving on 1000% times faster and easier.
When we don’t apologize when we know we should, we are being proud.
Love is not prideful.
“In general, pride is at the bottom of all great mistakes” – John Ruskin
To have a successful relationship, apologize often – so that you don’t make the mistake of being proud.
Well, that’s it for the 5 foundations every relationship needs to have. If you use these foundations, the chances of having an incredibly happy, long-lasting and successful relationship will increase astronomically. Good luck!