Whatever your relationship status or relationship goals are, building a great romantic relationship is like building your dream home. Firstly, it requires work and a vision, and secondly at some stage, you will need to spring clean, upgrade and redecorate. So I have laid out 6 basic relationship rules to make relationships better. Reassess your relationship milestones and status with this foundation to build your dream partnership.
1. Make no assumption
Assumptions, and the lack of communication that comes along it, are the number one relationship killer. Each person is different. We have lived different lives; have different viewpoints and each have our own personal perception. Assumption is a form of passiveness; it doesn’t require any real effort or action, which are both vital to keep relationships moving in a positive direction. It is easy to make assumptions, and the challenge lies is putting those aside to truly understand your partner.
Stop just making assumptions, and strive to ask the difficult questions, understand, communicate openly and listen from a place of care and love. When you put assumption aside, it opens the door for real connection.
2. Take responsibility
Taking responsibility means being able to respond from an empowered place of choice, rather than from reaction to the situation. Responsibility is the willingness to acknowledge that you are part of the cause in the situation. Sometimes you won’t recognise it in the moment, but living from a place of responsibility means that you are open to acknowledge your role. Remember that you have also made the decisions to put yourself into this situation, and it’s likely that your behaviours and actions have done some of the damage. If you didn’t get what you wanted, part of the problem was you. It always takes two people to create and maintain any pattern of behaviour. It’s easy to blame your partner for causing the problems. Blaming the other is a major destructive source in a relationship as it undermines your active role.
Responsibility gives you the power to respond rather than only react, which is usually emotional rather than rational. Don’t let your emotions drive your decisions, or your behaviour. Acknowledging your own autonomy, allows one to come to a more balanced state before making decisions, taking action or speaking harshly.
Looking honestly at your actions throughout the relationship, and with great courage, seeing what you did to cause separation, loss of intimacy and caring, is empowering. It moves you from victim to participant. Did you stay true to your own values and principles? Did you fail to express your real feelings and needs? Did your heart (or loins) wander? Where were you out of integrity? Did you create insecurity by keeping secrets? Every action and decision, by both individuals, has the power to impact a relationship. By standing up to your responsibility fully, it opens the door for freedom of response and takes away the power of blame and shame.
3. Speak the truth
Begin by telling yourself the truth. The certainty of truth opens the way to clarity. What is really going on inside you? Are you hurt? Afraid? Sad? Do you feel vulnerable? Honesty begins with yourself.
The next step is honesty with your partner. When you honestly and openly discuss your feelings and emotions, without blame, the other person can feel compassion and stay in their own feelings without blaming you. For a real relationship to grow and develop, truth is a fundamental foundation to build from. Being clear with yourself, and then your partner, creates the transparency and openness needed for a healthy and happy relationship.
4. Honour and respect
Honour and respect yourself, your lover and your relationship. In that order. To understand what that means in action, honour is defined as holding someone in high regard, or esteem. While, respect is a feeling of deep admiration for another person. When you respect and honour yourself, you treat yourself as important, and worthy of love and care. When you honour another, you are careful to not do anything to hurt or demean them. Both of these spaces create a healthy environment to develop into the next level, the place you have dreamed of living your life and love. By coming from a place of honour and respect, you safeguard against the negative influences of negating the other.
There is a third “person” to consider – the relationship itself. The relationship deserves to be respected. There should be no blaming, no contempt, and no demeaning speech or actions. This commitment keeps the pain and damage to a minimum. It also ensures that you both feel like the relationship is a safe place, where you can be open and give and receive love freely.
5. Be kind
Relationships, just like life, are always a mix of good and bad, ups and downs. They start out with good feelings and good intentions. Both people want to be loved, and want to love. Both want to feel secure and cared for. However, these initial positive motivations are rarely enough to sustain two people in the long run, dealing with a real feelings and the full range of reactions in the challenges of everyday living together.
When you decide your current relationship status is not serving you, remember your original intention was to love. This person has shared their life, their time, and their body with you. This act is worthy of your kindness and your love. When you separate yourself out of a loving space to a cold, distant, or angry space, you create further friction. But when you choose kindness and love, you foster connection. Be kind as your commandant and come from a loving space in your actions and decisions. Believing the best, allows you to give your best and in return, create the best relationship.
6. Relationship mindset
Moving from a selfish, individualistic mindset to a relationship mindset can change your whole bond. When you have committed to be in a relationship, you should shift your mindset to one of a mutual gain, an ‘us’ rather than ‘me’ mentality. Real relationships come from a place of what you can give, not get. By giving what you can, you receive so much more. Being in a committed relationship is recognising you don’t want an easy way out. You are in this for the long haul. So what can you do to make this the ultimate relationship for both of you? Trust me, when you give with your whole heart, your will receive. It is one of the laws of nature.
Being in a relationship with the mindset of inspiring your partner to grow and be better person, means invariably you will also be growing into a better person, as will your relationship. Aim to leave every situation better than when you entered it. You both want to be in a relationship that makes you better, happier and more fulfilled. Set that into motion by shifting gears into a relationship mindset.