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5 Secrets of Happy Couples

Posted May 28, 2014 by Katie Fleming in Life After Five

Have you ever wondered what exactly it is that those healthy and happy couples know about relationships that the rest of us don’t seem to know?

Here are 5 of their secrets:

  1. They actively listen to each other.  Most of the time, we are planning our response while our partner is still talking.  Take the time to pay attention to what your partner is saying, and kindly ask for clarification if you don’t fully understand what they are saying.  Then, when it is your turn, they will take the time to pay attention to you!
  2. They empathize with each other.  Even when you can’t directly relate to why your partner is reacting to a situation in a certain way, or feeling a certain way, take the time to mentally put yourself in your partner’s shoes in order to better understand where they’re coming from.
  3. They don’t take their partner’s mood personally.  People in healthy relationships are able to mentally and emotionally “step back” from their partner’s mood.  When your partner is in a negative mood, remind yourself that you and your partner are separate beings who have unique experiences throughout each and every day.  Your partner’s mood may stem from any number of things that happened earlier in the day that have absolutely nothing to do with you.
  4. They allow faults.  Even though we try very hard, no human is perfect.  If your partner’s habit of leaving socks laying around the house, forgetting to call you back, chewing with their mouth open, or whatever it is that (understandably!) bugs you is their worst fault, then consider yourself lucky.  After all, your partner is allowing your faults as well.
  5. They prioritize positive experiences.  Picture your relationship as a checking account.  Every positive experience you have is adding to the account.  Every negative experience (ie, arguments), is drawing from the account.  If you really take the time to enjoy life with each other, and stockpile positive experiences, you have more in the bank to “draw upon” when those negative experiences happen.  If you do not prioritize positive experiences with each other, then each negative experience is going to put your relationship further and further in “debt”.

About the Author

Katie Fleming

Katie earned her Masters in Marriage and Family Therapy from Northwestern University, and is currently a Crisis Therapist in Chicago. Her therapy interests include health and wellness, relationships, trauma, and crisis. Katie is also a therapist with a group practice in Arlington Heights. Katie is thrilled to be a part of Career Girl Network, helping to guide all Career Girls towards overall physical, emotional, and mental wellness. Katie is passionate about animal rescue, running, and yoga. She is the proud dog mom of Gulliver and Duke!