What is a Healthy Relationship, Anyway?
So… You’ve been seeing someone for a while now. It’s gone beyond the casual dating phase and you both are calling it a relationship. How do you know if it’s a healthy relationship?
Your first clue is that you both should feel supported, heard, and connected while still being independent. Only the two of you can decide what it a healthy relationship for the both of you. However, if something doesn’t feel right to you then it isn’t right. If that is the case then remove yourself from the relationship and seek help if necessary.
Your second clue should be your ability to communicate and set boundaries with each other. If you’re not sure about your communication skills, check out this article on the Top Five Communication Challenges in Relationships. If you’ve had trouble with your boundaries then this article is sure to help you set effective boundaries.
Signs of a Healthy Relationship
There are a great many signs of a healthy relationship; however, these are the top seven that help to create a healthy foundation for a committed and connected relationship.
Respect. The first and best sign of a healthy relationship is that there is a mutual respect. Respect is a key foundational element of a healthy relationship, just as important if not more so than love. Without respect in your relationships you can not grow together as a couple. Learn more about respect in this article.
Trust. Having a strong sense of trust is another key foundational element of a healthy relationship. Open lines of communication require you both to be trusting so you can discuss the good, the bad, and the ugly, and ultimately resolve things. If you have had challenges with trust you might consider learning more about trust building with this article.
Values. It is equally important that you both maintain similar basic values within your relationship. Maintaining similar principles or standards of behavior and judgements of what is important in your lives keep you closely connected.
Life Goals. Knowing what you want out of life, what your common goals are, what you wish to accomplish in life, and are firmly committed to achieving these together highlight the health of your relationship.
Identity. Keeping your own identity is a vital aspect of relationship. While you are part of a couple or partnership now you are also your own person. Giving up or merging your identities too far can lead you down an unhealthy path toward codependency.
Quality Time. An ability to spend peaceful quality time together will deepen your connection and emotional intimacy while healthy time apart will strengthen the foundation of your relationship.
Intimacy. Your intimacy should extend beyond the bedroom. Don’t mistake chemistry for true connection or emotional intimacy. Connecting with your partner on multiple levels such as spiritually, emotionally, mentally, and physically will ensure a healthy relationship connection.
What qualities have you found to be necessary for a healthy relationship?
JoyWork Suggestion: Take a tally of your relationship and see if you are weighing in on the healthy side. If you come out a bit top heavy on “unhealthy” consider a coaching session to help you find your way forward.
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