When you start thinking about how to have a healthy relationship, don’t immediately zero in on what the other person should be like or what they should do for you. Instead, focus on the relationship itself and what the interplay between the two of you looks like. Which special characteristics does this relationship have? What brings you and your partner together? Close your eyes and imagine how happy you and your partner make each other. Envision feeling completely fulfilled and loved by another person. How does that feel? More importantly, why does it feel that way?
1. Love yourself first
Have you ever heard the expression “like attracts like”? This is the law of attraction – the idea that we attract the things that we focus on and surround ourselves with – and it applies to relationships and to life. If you embrace positive thinking, live with passion and are kind and accepting of yourself and others, you’ll attract people who do the same. Learning self-love isn’t always easy. You’ll need to identify and overcome your limiting beliefs and rewrite your story to give you strength and confidence. But if you’re wondering how to have a healthy relationship, it’s a vital first step.
2. Raise your standards
You must hold yourself to high standards if you want a healthy relationship. If your expectations are low and you’re not putting in the effort to grow with your partner, the result will be a stale and deteriorating relationship. What is it that you truly want from your relationship? What are the standards you’d hold for your dream partner? What do you expect from your partner, physically and emotionally? Whatever it is, that’s the bar that you must hold for yourself as well. You are an active participant in this relationship; the way you want them to show up for you is the way you must show up for them.
3. Meet your partner’s core needs
What does a healthy relationship look like? It looks like two people making each other’s needs their own. The more you do this, the more fulfilling the relationship becomes. What are your partner’s core needs? Comfort? Security? Significance? How do they want these needs met? Through touch, words or something else?
Cultivate the skill of heartfelt understanding. Going beyond just knowing what your partner needs at an intellectual level, this means connecting at a deeper emotional level and empathetically standing in their shoes. Is your partner your number one priority? What would you give for the love of your life? At the same time, are you feeling personally fulfilled by the relationship?
4. Communicate effectively
Healthy relationships depend on effective communication. You don’t need to be a mind reader to know what your partner wants – odds are they’ve told you. But communicating in a healthy relationship means listening. Remember, it’s not about you – it’s about what you can do for the person you love.
Once you know what your needs are, and your partner’s, you can actively work to make sure they’re being met. What would you do for the love of your life? Anything, right? Meeting your significant other’s core needs will take you to profound levels of happiness, love, passion and trust.
5. Grow together
What if the road ahead is tough and full of challenges? As Tony says, “Every problem is a gift, without problems we would not grow.” Problems, obstacles and misalignments are opportunities to push forward and grow together with your partner.
Lack of growth is better known as stagnation, which can lead to deterioration when it comes to a relationship. Growth is a product of uncertainty and an act of pushing into uncharted territory. Sometimes discomfort is a good thing, so don’t let fear hold your relationship – or you – back.