What does it take to grow a healthy relationship? Having been married to the same person for over 35 years, people sometimes ask me “What is the secret?” My typical answer is work! Ongoing maintenance! There are just a few things you need to work on to keep it healthy.
Hope – all relationships need some hope for the future; some shared dreams of where you want to go.
Effective Communication – which is a lot more than just talking. In fact, it is even more about listening and understanding, and being able to forgive.
Affection – you need to continue to be best friends who enjoy being together, sharing and showing how you really feel.
Laugh – there needs to be a lighter side to the relationship; an ability to have fun and play together.
Touch – involving both sexual and non sexual closeness; knowing when to be quiet and just give a hug and a kiss.
Healthy Balance in terms of time together and time apart. This stops you becoming too dependent on your partner for everything and not taking some responsibility for yourself.
Yield! Being able to willingly give in rather than demand your rights, sharing both the good and the bad together.
That is how to build a healthy relationship that will stand the test of time.
Chaplain Ian Whitley