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Signs of a Healthy Relationship  

I recently found a list of “signs of a healthy relationship” in Psychology Today and thought it was pretty good. So I’m sharing it with you here with some of my thoughts.

1. Partners support each other’s opportunities for growth. Relationships have to attend to the individuals that are part of them and take care of the individual’s development. Supporting your partner in this regard is a good sign of a healthy relationship. The key is to keep a good balance between individual needs and relationship needs.

2.  They share their emotions. Emotions are the part of life that bring flavor and that tell us what is important and valuable about our experience. Emotions thus give us information about what is important in our partners lives and help us understand them better. This all helps build what the marriage researcher John Gottman calls love maps, which are a key foundation to a healthy relationship.

3.  They express their gratitude. It is important to feel appreciated in a relationship. A lack of feeling appreciated is one of the most common complaints I get from couples. So going out of your way to express your gratitude for your partner goes a long way to improve the quality of your relationship.

4. Couples see the positive sides to commitment. Romantic commitment can carry many different meanings, some positive and some negative or constraining. Couples in healthy relationship are clear about and focus on the positive aspects of commitment.

5.  Both focus on humility. Pride, ego, and competition are not particularly helpful aspects of relationships, so humility is helpful. Since so much of healthy communication is getting around misunderstandings and differences, an approach where both partners bring humility to their positions is helpful.

6. They practice self compassion. Individuals who are gentle with themselves are more likely to be gentle with their partners as well. And gentleness goes a long way in creating a healthy relationship.

There you have it. A nice list of healthy relationship signs. How does yours stack up? One of the really encouraging things I see is that items 1 through 3 are actions you can take without too much difficulty. Why don’t you get started?