A Primer For Healthy Relationships
Healthy relationships between family, friends, and partners can improve our wellbeing and happiness. Let’s take a look at how you can approach relationships, as well as how you can work in each relationship you have to better build your skills.
Approaching Relationships in a Healthy Manner: Know Thy Self
The rise of Humanistic Psychology gives us one of the best approaches. It assumes that for healthy relationships to occur, we must first be aware of what we need going in. Cultivating this mindfulness gives us the power to judge if we are in healthy relationships, as well as the energy to turn whatever relationship we have into healthier ones.
So, the trick to understanding and making healthy relationships work is to better understand what you are looking for. Be aware of destructive ‘should’ and ‘ought’ statements, as they place on you the unnecessary expectation that you are somehow in charge or responsible for how other people act.
Instead, focus on your needs. Far from making you shallow, focusing on you makes you happy in life allows you to be frank, honest, and to the point with a family member, partner, or friend regarding what you need. Building up the skill set for a healthy relationship takes time. Below are a few situations and solutions where you can develop further skills.
Related: Top Relationship Advice
Breaking Emotion Cycles with Family
Family can be one of the hardest things for people to have healthy relationships with. Families manage to get under our skin like no one else, transporting us back to when we were children. Building healthier relationships will require separating yourself from whatever emotional cycle occurs. By taking interest and time into your own emotional experience, you can begin building happy relationships through example, even if none existed prior.
The Give and Take of Friendship
It can be hard for many to form healthy relationships with friends, especially as they grow older. Good relationships require give and take. Sometimes, it will mean having to help your friend through challenging times while the reverse will be true as well. It is normal for healthy relationships with friends to go through points of friction. Relationships are best seen in how you solve whatever problems exist between the two of you.
Building Interdependent Relationships in Couples
It is assumed that any couple will immediately and automatically be able to have healthy relationships with their partner. The truth is that the average individual has their own set of baggage, fears, and insecurities that can get in the way of positive relationships forming, especially with a partner. Relationships require awareness, time, and consideration by both parties. Each person must want interdependent relationships in order for it to work.
Whether your relationship is going well or poorly, there is never a bad time to cultivate healthy relationships skills. Write out the positive and negative things in life. Positive relationships with partners require having ownership over your emotions and actions. Identify what you can change, learn to be ok with what you cannot change, and consider leaving the relationship if your partner is unwilling or unresponsive to building a healthy relationship.