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15 Beliefs Happy Couples Hold

15 Beliefs Happy Couples Hold

We’ve all known that one couple that seems to have it all: the couple that still looks at each other with a sparkle in their eyes, and who you can tell are truly happy together. My grandparents have been married for over 50 years. Every time my grandma leaves the room my grandpa comments to me about how lucky he is to have her. Their happiness is what I strive for in my relationship. Any long lasting happy couple has been through thick and thin together, and has outlasted the hard times. Having a happy and working relationship doesn’t come without effort. These 15 beliefs of happy couples don’t just apply to marriage. It applies to any romantic relationship that’s worth fighting for.

1. They believe that communication is key

Communication is hard work, but it is an essential part of any relationship. When you are able to communicate openly and effectively with your significant other it leads to growth in your relationship. Keeping emotions or concerns bottled up because you haven’t learned how to communicate with each other will only damage the relationship. Communication is the first step to a lasting relationship.

2. They believe it’s good for their partner to change

Life is all about changes, so why would you expect your partner to stay the same? Change is good for a relationship, it helps you grow together. Don’t be afraid if you see your partner changing, instead accept and learn with the changes. Happy couples grow stronger through personal changes. Something that once made your partner mad, might one day make them smile, and that’s just how life goes. So roll with the changes, don’t turn away from them.

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3. We’re only human. Mistakes happen, and so do arguments

Neither one of you is perfect, and mistakes are going to happen. Happy couples understand that, and they know there’s a difference between having an argument about it, and having a fight about it. Arguments are normal in any relationship, but it’s the way the arguments are handled that matters. Happy couples talk about the problem instead of placing blame, intentionally trying to hurt the other person, or being vengeful.

4. Honesty is the best policy

We’ve all heard this one before – but it’s the glue to any long term relationship. There’s no good reason to hide something from your partner. Being open and honest will bring you closer as a couple. Lying and keeping secrets from them will only tear you apart. Plus, you should be able to tell your partner anything without them judging you. When something goes wrong, just stick to the truth.

5. They are best friends

A study done by the National Bureau of Economic Research, found that one of the keys to a happy marriage is having your best friend as your spouse. Happy couples share everything with each other, they spend a lot of time together, and they truly enjoy each others’ company.

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6. They believe in having fun together

Relationships might be a constant work in progress, but what’s the point if you can’t have fun? Happy couples believe in the importance of having fun together. Life is too serious to not stop and have some fun together. Make sure to spend some time laughing and trying new things together. Make memories together that you will be happy to look back on later.

7. They believe in the importance of sex

Sex is important to a happy relationship. Happy couples don’t withhold physical attention from each other, especially as a punishment. They talk about sex openly with each other and without criticism from the other. Happy couples have sex often and regularly, and both people participate equally. No matter how busy your life becomes, there’s always time for sex.

8. They believe in putting each other first

Friends, family, work, school, children, sports, so on and so forth. There can be so many things that take up our day. No matter how many things are going on in their lives, happy couples always put each other first. They don’t neglect each other because something else comes up. They make time for each other, and do little things to show the other how much they are appreciated.

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9. They believe in alone time

Happy couples enjoy spending time together. However they know the importance of having some alone time as well. Alone time can help keep you sane, and help keep your relationship strong. Reflection is an important aspect of personal growth, and you can’t reflect on yourself if you are constantly with someone else.

10. They believe in being realistic and living INSIDE their means

Money is one of the most common things couples argue about. This is especially true if one person is less realistic about their money situation. Being realistic and having the ability to live inside of their means is another way happy couples have lasting relationships. Living outside of your means can cause unnecessary stress in the relationship, so be open and communicate with each other about money and spending habits.

11. They share the same values

Whether it’s the importance of family, career, ambition, or something else, happy couples share similar goals and values in life. A couple can be of different religious backgrounds or cultural backgrounds and still have a happy relationship; as long as they have the same goals and values. If both individuals believe in the same thing it will help make the relationship stronger. When couples have different values in life, it can cause a divide. Happy couples push each other to reach their goals, while staying in line with their values.

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12. They respect each other

Respect is something that everyone strives for in life, and often times you have to earn it. Happy couples have a mutual respect for each other. This isn’t because they believe in everything each other says, but rather they have a love and understanding of the other person that is held above all else. They respect each other enough to agree to disagree on some issues, and there isn’t any hostility left over. If you don’t respect each other, then you’re in for a struggle.

13. They support each other

Happy couples know that when shit hits the fan, the other person will be there for them. They support each other to follow their dreams and believe wholeheartedly in their partner’s abilities. When things get rocky, or something devastating happens, there’s no question – their partner will be there for them. They can count on each other to be the support they need to get through anything.

14. They believe in the importance of having your own life

Happy couples aren’t attached at the hip. They spend a lot of time together because they want to, but they also have their own life. One person’s passions or hobbies may be extremely different than the others, and that’s okay. It’s those differences that made you fall in love with them, and are what keeps you amazed by them. Happy couples support the differences they have. Having your own life keeps you interesting to your partner.

15. They believe that a happy relationship takes work

A worthwhile relationship isn’t always sunshine and roses. It takes work to make a relationship last. Any happy couple understands that at times their partner is going to annoy them, anger them, disappoint them, and frustrate them. People make mistakes and your partner is only human. It’s your ability to get past those feelings and communicate openly and honestly that will lead to a happier and more fulfilling relationship. Happy couples cherish each other and work through the hard times – they don’t just give up.

Featured photo credit: happy couple via i.ytimg.com

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Last Updated on February 21, 2019

The Secret to Effective Conflict Resolution: The IBR Approach

The Secret to Effective Conflict Resolution: The IBR Approach

In business, in social relationships, in family… In whatever context conflict is always inevitable, especially when you are in the leader role. This role equals “make decisions for the best of majority” and the remaining are not amused. Conflicts arise.

Conflicts arise when we want to push for a better quality work but some members want to take a break from work.

Conflicts arise when we as citizens want more recreational facilities but the Government has to balance the needs to maintain tourism growth.

Conflicts are literally everywhere.

Avoiding Conflicts a No-No and Resolving Conflicts a Win-Win

Avoiding conflicts seem to be a viable option for us. The cruel fact is, it isn’t. Conflicts won’t walk away by themselves. They will, instead, escalate and haunt you back even more when we finally realize that’s no way we can let it be.

Moreover, avoiding conflicts will eventually intensify the misunderstanding among the involved parties. And the misunderstanding severely hinders open communication which later on the parties tend to keep things secret. This is obviously detrimental to teamwork.

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Some may view conflicts as the last step before arguments. And they thus leave it aside as if they never happen. This is not true.

Conflicts are the intersect point between different individuals with different opinions. And this does not necessarily lead to argument.

Instead, proper handling of conflicts can actually result in a win-win situation – both parties are pleased and allies are gained. A better understanding between each other and future conflicts are less likely to happen.

The IBR Approach to Resolve Conflicts

Here, we introduce to you an effective approach to resolve conflicts – the Interest-Based Relational (IBR) approach. The IBR approach was developed by Roger Fisher and William Ury in their 1981 book Getting to Yes. It stresses the importance of the separation between people and their emotions from the problem. Another focus of the approach is to build mutual understanding and respect as they strengthen bonds among parties and can ultimately help resolve conflicts in a harmonious way. The approach suggests a 6-step procedure for conflict resolution:

Step 1: Prioritize Good Relationships

How? Before addressing the problem or even starting the discussion, make it clear the conflict can result in a mutual trouble and through subsequent respectful negotiation the conflict can be resolved peacefully. And that brings the best outcome to the whole team by working together.

Why? It is easy to overlook own cause of the conflict and point the finger to the members with different opinions. With such a mindset, it is likely to blame rather than to listen to the others and fail to acknowledge the problem completely. Such a discussion manner will undermine the good relationships among the members and aggravate the problem.

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Example: Before discussion, stress that the problem is never one’s complete fault. Everyone is responsible for it. Then, it is important to point out our own involvement in the problem and state clearly we are here to listen to everyone’s opinions rather than accusing others.

Step 2: People Are NOT the Cause of Problem

How? State clearly the problem is never one-sided. Collaborative effort is needed. More importantly, note the problem should not be taken personally. We are not making accusations on persons but addressing the problem itself.

Why? Once things taken personally, everything will go out of control. People will become irrational and neglect others’ opinions. We are then unable to address the problem properly because we cannot grasp a fuller and clearer picture of the problem due to presumption.

Example: In spite of the confronting opinions, we have to emphasize that the problem is not a result of the persons but probably the different perspectives to view it. So, if we try to look at the problem from the other’s perspective, we may understand why there are varied opinions.

Step 3: Listen From ALL Stances

How? Do NOT blame others. It is of utmost importance. Ask for everyone’s opinions. It is important to let everyone feel that they contribute to the discussion. Tell them their involvement is essential to solve the problem and their effort is very much appreciated.

Why? None wants to be ignored. If one feels neglected, it is very likely for he/she to be aggressive. It is definitely not what we hope to see in a discussion. Acknowledging and being acknowledged are equally important. So, make sure everyone has equal opportunity to express their views. Also, realizing their opinions are not neglected, they will be more receptive to other opinions.

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Example: A little trick can played here: Invite others to talk first. It is an easy way to let others feel involved and ,more importantly, know their voices are heard. Also, we can show that we are actively listening to them by giving direct eye-contact and nodding. One important to note is that never interrupt anyone. Always let them finish first beforeanother one begins.

Step 4: Listen Comes First, Talk Follows

How? Ensure everyone has listened to one another points of view. It can be done by taking turn to speak and leaving the discussion part at last. State once again the problem is nothing personal and no accusation should be made.

Why? By turn-taking, everyone can finish talking and voices of all sides can be heard indiscriminantly. This can promote willingness to listen to opposing opinions.

Example: We can prepare pieces of paper with different numbers written on them. Then, ask different members to pick one and talk according to the sequence of the number. After everyone’s finished, advise everyone to use “I” more than “You” in the discussion period to avoid others thinking that it is an accusation.

Step 5: Understand the Facts, Then Address the Problem

How? List out ALL the facts first. Ask everyone to tell what they know about the problems.

Why? Sometimes your facts are unknown to the others while they may know something we don’t. Missing out on these facts could possibly lead to inaccurate capture of the problem. Also, different known facts can lead to different perception of the matter. It also helps everyone better understand the problem and can eventually help reach a solution.

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Example: While everyone is expressing their own views, ask them to write down everything they know that is true to the problem. As soon as everyone has finished, all facts can be noted and everyone’s understanding of the problem is raised.

Step 6: Solve the Problem Together

How? Knowing what everyone’s thinking, it is now time to resolve the conflict. Up to this point, everyone should have understood the problem better. So, it is everyone’s time to suggest some solutions. It is important not to have one giving all the solutions.

Why? Having everyone suggesting their solutions is important as they will not feel excluded and their opinions are considered. Besides, it may also generate more solutions that can better resolve the conflicts. Everyone will more likely be satisfied with the result.

Example: After discussion, ask all members to suggest any possible solutions and stress that all solutions are welcomed. State clearly that we are looking for the best outcomes for everyone’s sake rather than battling to win over one another. Then, evaluate all the solutions and pick the one that is in favor of everyone.

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