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How to Build Happy Relationships

Mary-Lauren O’Crowley, LPC

As human beings, we tend to make many relationships in life. Some are given to us by nature i.e., our family while others we make over the course of our lifetime. Relationships are the basic human need and they play a huge role in our happiness and mental health. From friends to life partners to acquaintances, every relationship nurtures us in a unique way. But relationships aren’t that easy and simple as depicted in novels and movies. Here are a few tips for building healthy relationships in life compiled through extensive research:  

1) Learn to Communicate

This has been said many times before and we cannot stress it enough; communication is the key. Effective communication forms the basis of every relationship. Learn to openly express your feelings to your partner/friend, tell them your expectations from them and the relationship, and how much you value them. As important as is the open expression of feelings, listening to your better half holds an equal significance. Be a good listener in the relationship so that there is an equal exchange of thoughts.  

2) Accept the Flaws and Differences: 

“It is the need of every relationship to communicate your dislikes but expecting the other person to change 360 degrees is like living in a fool’s paradise.” 

One most common mistake that we tend to make in relationships is that we try to change the other person. You need to accept the other person with all their flaws as no one is perfect in this worldly world. Just like flaws, there exist differences in the opinions of two people sharing a relationship. In order to maintain a healthy relationship, you need to have mutual respect for the differences rather than despising the other person for them. Doing so, the spark in your relationship will be matchless. Don’t forget two opposites attract each other. 

3) Be Flexible about Change

You must know the fact that things don’t remain the same always. People may not remain the same when you first met them. Life happens to              everybody and people tend to change.  

4)  Give Space to the Other Person

 The most common mistake done by a majority of people in different life relationships is that they tend to suffocate the other person. Every person needs space to live their life, to practice hobbies they are interested in and to pursue their individual interests which can be different from you. And that is totally okay.  

“Two people in a relationship can cultivate their individual hobbies and interests without interdependence. Let’s make that normal.” 

5) Love Yourself First

You cannot pour from an empty cup. It’s high time we understand this and start focusing on ourselves. No relationship demands to prioritize the other person above you. And it shouldn’t to cultivate a healthy relationship. When you love yourself first, only then you will be able to love the other person. Loving the other person more than yourself is like putting their happiness and needs above yours. We are not asking you to overlook your life partner’s efforts but you can always give an equal amount of love to them as you give yourself. That’s something easy to do, isn’t it?   

I would like to give a friendly reminder here that self-love is not only crucial for the relationships it is crucial for the individual well being too. If you or someone you know is struggling with their relationships, please reach out to the intake specialists at Symmetry Counseling today to get paired with a licensed counselor!

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