Essentials for a Healthy Couple
While there are many factors involved, these are my top 5. I truly believe every relationship without these 5 principles will ultimately fail. I wrote this from my perspective in my relationship. Apply this to your relationship and adjust pronouns accordingly. Also, I expect all these 5 principles from her as well. Everything on this list is two-dimensional.
1 | Happiness
Above all, you produce the most amount of smiles and the least amount of tears. You make her happier and laugh more than anyone else in her life. You also create the least amount of frustration in her life compared to everyone else. You’re the solution, not the problem; the cure, not a disease.
I wouldn't want to go as far and say "I am responsible for her happiness". I think we are all responsible for our own happiness. However, I know I play a significant role. I know that I would rather be a source of smiles than tears.
2 | Success
Identify what SHE defines as her own success. What are her goals and missions? Prove, not tell, but show her that you want her to achieve her goals. You want her to be successful on her own terms. In some cases, you are more determined and motivated to help her achieve her goals than she is willing to help herself.
3 | Stress
Handling stressful situations together. Don’t say things out of anger. Don’t be passive-aggressive. Explain your feelings and seek to understand her feelings before you doubt them. Ask questions to understand, not to undermine.
If you ask the right questions, you give her the opportunity to define her feelings. If her feelings are truly invalid, this gives her the opportunity to make that call. That's her call to make, not your's. She needs to define her emotion and digest it. All the while, you’re supporting her emotionally by simply seeking to understand.
As I said before, this is 2-dimensional. Sometimes, I just get frustrated for no reason. She walks me through defining what is going on. Then I come to the conclusion that my feelings are invalid and I just need to shake it off. My feelings of frustration were real, but pointless. She didn't decide, but rather helped me decide the validity of my feelings.
4 | Money
Talk about money and finances. Set time aside to teach one another about money. Learn together. Schedule time. Aside from infidelity, financial problems is the main cause for divorce. Ironically, a divorce will also worsen your financial problems.
I know this section is short, but it shouldn't require an explanation. We need money to survive. There are plenty of problems that are far more important than money. Don't waste your time fighting about money.
5 | Forgiveness
Forgive and forget. Most problems should not define your relationship. Learn to move on and prevent the problems from happening again. It’s best to wait until the tension has passed. Finding solutions is much easier when everyone can think clearly. A small fight or disagreement is not the definition of your relationship.