Whether you are currently in a relationship, or have had a few serious ones in your life (or not a single one!) relationships play an important role in our lives. They provide emotional and physical support and can bring great joy as well as challenge. They can also be a source of frustration and sadness when they are not healthy. Regardless of the type or length of a particular relationship, there are some things you should always look for in a partner and in your relationship to help ensure it is happy and healthy.
Some of the most important characteristics of a relationship include mutual trust, respect, and communication as well as a balance between giving and taking. Taking time to consider the amount of energy, affection, love, and support you give and receive in a relationship can be a good way to assess if it feels balanced or not. A healthy balance can help you feel more satisfied with the relationship and make sure you and your partner are both feeling supported and loved in the same way.
In a healthy relationship, you are able to communicate openly and honestly with your partner, even about things that are difficult or uncomfortable. You are able to talk about your needs and expectations and agree on how you want your relationship to work. This includes discussing issues such as sex, finances, and living arrangements. If you are not able to communicate with your partner about these issues, it is unlikely that the two of you will be able to successfully navigate them together.
Communication is not only about speaking with your partner, but it also involves listening and being receptive to what they have to say. You should be able to listen without criticism or judgement and with an open mind. This is especially true in conflict situations. You should also be able to resolve conflict without humiliation or degradation, as this can cause lasting damage in the relationship.
You are able to laugh and have fun with your partner. This is not only a sign of a positive relationship, but it can also be a relief from stress and tension that may come up during tough times in the relationship. This can include sharing a silly joke or making each other laugh at something that they find funny.
Your partner values who you are and supports you in your endeavors. They encourage you to be the best version of yourself, whether that is in your personal or professional life. This can include helping you to achieve goals or encouraging you to take on new challenges in your life. It is also a sign of a positive relationship if your partner respects the ways that you are different from them.
You prioritize spending time together, but you still recognize the importance of having your own independent time. This might mean spending some of your time alone, pursuing your own hobbies, or seeing friends and family. It is also important that you are able to accept your partner’s need for personal space.