The Secret of Happy Relationships

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I am unashamedly happy.

I say ‘unashamedly’ because sometimes we are made to feel as if were not allowed to be happy. With all the unhappy people around us we are made to feel guilty about our own happiness – as if it’s our fault that we’re happy, and that by showing and expressing our happiness, we are somehow bragging or attempting to make other people feel bad about their circumstances.

What a crock of nonsense. It’s peoples own weltschmerz that is defining their perceptions about happy people. Their reality is defined by their distorted view of ‘how things should be’, instead of the reality that nothing is ever perfect. No relationship is perfect and no person is perfect. That ‘perfect’ partner that you fantasize about does not exists, sorry. Maybe in a Disney movie, but not here on earth.

So what makes a couple happy? What are the ingredients for happiness in a relationship?

  1. RespectRespect for yourself firstly, and then respect for your partner. Many people respect their partners but not themselves. When you look in the mirror what do you see? Someone that your partner can respect? Someone that your partner can look up to and be proud of? If not, then you have to become respectable. If you don’t then it means you don’t respect your partner.
  2. Be the person you want your partner to beStop trying to change your partner. Just be what you want your partner to be. Be the kind of person that he or she would look up to and respect. Stop trying to change your partner. Stop trying to live your life vicariously through your partner. Look inward first, before you look outward.
  3. Unconditional loveBig words, but very important. Unconditional love means just that. It’s not some meme on Facebook. It’s real. But what does it mean? It means that you love your partner with all their faults and shortcomings. You love without condition and demands.

    You love them for who they are, not for what you want them to become.

  4. Learn to spend time with yourselfBoy oh boy, but some people can be demanding. They are so scared to be left alone that they can only be happy if they are the center of attention. It’s because they cannot stand being in their own company. Find a hobby or read a book. Go for long walks – alone. Learn to spend time with yourself because if you can’t then your partner will be smothered and suffocated by your constant needyness. Space and time is very important in a relationship. You need to be able to do your own thing, and you need to be able to give your partner the time and space to be alone.

    If your happiness is dependent on the attention you get, your relationship will fail.

  5. Don’t sweat the small stuffHave you ever seen these small arguments start? Perhaps about the dirty spoon that was left on the table? It starts as a banal argument and then escalates into a full-blown nuclear war. Thinking back on all the arguments, almost all of them started with stupid, insignificant disagreements. Almost all of them escalated into the third world war. This can easily be avoided by not sweating the small stuff. It takes two to tango and one person can not have an argument on their own. It’s your choice if you want to participate in the fight or not.

    Ask yourself this question when the tensions rise: “Will it make any difference in my life if I don’t argue about this?”

  6. Laugh and laugh and then laugh some moreLaughter cures everything. You can’t be unhappy while laughing. Make each other laugh, often. Be silly. Be spontaneous.
  7. Your partner must be your best friendI think this is the most important aspect of a happy relationship. If your partner is your best friend then you will be able to spend time in each others company without getting bored. Friendship in a partnership is more important than love. Love means nothing if you’re not best friends. Best friends talk about everything and anything.

    Best friends forgive and make up, they don’t get divorced.