My entire life, I've been surrounded by successful relationships. My parents are just as in love with one another as the day they met. My grandparents will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary this month. My best friend has lived with her boyfriend in Sweden for years. So what do all of these very different unions have in common?
To get to the bottom of it, I asked many couples why they think their relationships work. Everyone listed off a few different reasons, but they all stated one fact that was the same: they talk to their significant others. I mean really talk to each other and hear what their partners have to say. So what do all content couples do every day? It's very simple.
Happy couples communicate with each other.
Constant communication seems so obvious, but it can easily slip through the cracks. In order to keep your relationship healthy and happy, there's three things you need to do to communicate successfully.
1. Express your needs and feelings.
There's no way for your partner to know what you want out of your relationship if you don't say so. Make sure to clearly express how you are feeling — whether that be happy or upset — so that you and your partner are on the same page. Your significant other is not a mind reader, so it's up to you. You may learn something new about each other.
2. Be completely honest.
The moment you start lying is the moment things go wrong. If you can't be honest with the person you love, who can you be honest with? Go beyond being open about the dynamic of your relationship; talk about a bad day at work or a friend who hurt your feelings. The more experiences you share, the closer you will become.
3. Don't just speak — make sure to listen.
There are two people in a relationship. Your partner should be communicating with you too. Be a good listener and make sure to take in everything your other half is saying. You are not perfect, so if you have to make some adjustments for your relationship work, be open-minded.
If you practice communication every day, you will see that your relationship will be stronger than ever. Sometimes it's hard to do, but the greatest challenges are always worth the end result. Here's to many more happy anniversaries with your significant other!