Relationships, like everything else, have key elements and behaviors that make them easier, more successful, and happier, or harder, less successful, and unhappy. Do you know what kind of relationship is required for a happy marriage? Have you put your relationship on autopilot and only think about good intentions but never act on them? Or do you make a conscious effort to love your partner every day?
Most people understand how it feels to be in a relationship’s “honeymoon phase,” when both of your brains are working to bring you closer together. Romantic love produces a lot of dopamine, which leads to pleasurable feelings and reciprocal behaviors. Prioritizing, listening, and validating each other are just the beginning of developing emotional safety. Your best face is forward in your kindness and attentiveness as you gradually build vital trust between you. You may be feeling the warm fuzzies of love because you spend a lot of time thinking about each other.
What exactly are you working on? Emotional Withdrawals or Emotional Deposits
Take a look at a basic bank account for a moment. Money comes in and money leaves. It’s an easy concept to grasp. What happens if you withdraw too much money without making new deposits? Alternatively, you may not realize how much you’ve spent until you’ve gone overdrawn, resulting in expensive overdrafts. There are no overdraft fees if you have a sufficient amount in your bank account and spend within (or below) your means. You gain peace of mind, compounded interest, and the ability to set aside savings, which provide safety and stability as well as the ability to spend on things that bring you joy, when you take care of your money relationship.
Relationships function similarly. If you take too much from your partner’s emotional bank account for too long without replenishing it, you overdraw your relationship account. So, what’s going to happen next? Emotional stress increases, we become more irritable or prone to zingers, conflicts and disagreements become more frequent, and our relationship becomes more estranged.
Make Emotional Deposits on a Regular Basis
- Maintaining a healthy work-life balance is essential.
- Tell your partner how you feel.
- Make a few random acts of kindness
- Continue to spend quality time together on a regular basis.
- Appreciation has a mystical quality to it.
- honouring your commitments
- be quick to forgive and sincere in your apologies
- Self-soothing and calming before settling disagreements
- Be aware, patient, and deliberate
Many of the things listed above, as well as others, could have happened in the beginning of your relationship. You were most likely both acutely aware of how much you meant to each other and how much you were loved. Some of the more intimate behaviors fade away with time, but if they all fade away, that’s a red flag. Some of you may be doing this for the first time, and you’re worried about the consequences.
Whatever is going on in the relationship, it is critical to reassure each other that they are loved and valued. The loving micro-behaviors of each couple are distinct and serve as a thread that binds them together over time. Remember that different people have different levels of need for these, so in some cases they may be absolutely necessary to stay connected, while in others it may not be as natural (due likely to earlier experiences and attachment styles). All of this can become quite complicated, and if left unaddressed, can result in bitterness and alienation.
Maintain your relationship’s “glue.” !
Make a conscious effort to love with intention. Try to console yourself or understand your partner’s point of view when you’re frustrated. When you want to surf the internet or check Facebook, put your computer or phone down and pay attention to your spouse. Pick up your partner’s favourite dish and prepare it for them when they’re too tired to cook. Volunteer to keep an eye on the kids when they need to exercise or take care of themselves.
Put forth some effort. Love with a purpose. Deposit emotional funds into your relationship’s emotional bank account on a regular basis to reap the benefits of a healthy and happy relationship!