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15 Don’ts that Happy Couples Follow

15 Don’ts that Happy Couples Follow

A happy relationship is a myth.Truth is that to keep the ball running is painstakingly tough.The facade behind the Facebook posts,pictureuploads and smiling faces is something no one else knows except the two people involved in the ongoing tussle. All couples go through some hair-ripping and teeth clenching moments, but there are some happy couples who focus on some particular Don’ts.

Yes you heard it right, Don’ts and not Do’s.

These are some particular Don’ts that happy couples follow to keep the spark alive,each day.

1. They don’t keep count.

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    Happy couples never keep count of their duties.They are oblivious to their daily chores yet they are not stickler for rules. The once in a while slip ups are obvious and the other person lets it off. If one is watching the sports telecast, the other quietly does the laundry even when it’s not her turn. Likewise, if she’s late from work, she will be greeted by the warm smell of a freshly cooked dinner.

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    2. They don’t use the words “I or Me”.

    Happy couples love to engage in talk that covers both of them. When relating their experiences to people about certain things, they use the words “We” and “us” rather “I”, “me” or “myself”.Their togetherness quotient is reflected by the sheer pride they have while discussing their collective thoughts.There are opinions that may differ at times,but then they learn to agree to disagree and enjoy the differences.

    3. They don’t sleep over it.

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      However small the issue at hand is, happy couples don’t sleep over their fights.Rather than taking the problem to bed and prolonging it till next morning,they talk over it.Of course if one is angry they do need a breathing time to cool down and reflect on the harshness of their voices but then they eventually come around.

      4. They don’t count their chickens before they hatch.

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        Happy couples don’t expect all of their hopes to be fulfilled.They realize that they are in charge of their own happiness and not the other person.The wife realizes that it is her dream to go backpacking for the holidays not her husband’s so she saves up for it.The husband knows that he wants to see the Grand Prix but doesn’t want to when his wife is expecting. They realize that dreams are meant to be there, some come true, others don’t.

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        5. They don’t think about the problem, they talk.

        Lots of problems go unresolved when the couple keeps it inside.Most of the times the pent up is to avoid hurting the other person or to over aggravate the fight. Little do people realize that this results in tumultuous outcomes. Happy couples don’t keep their hassles inside, they vent it out.Of course the result might not always be great and may hurt the other person, but for the sake of a fruitful relationship,it’s vital.

        6. They don’t argue, they discuss.

        Fights are an inevitable part of a relationship and we know that. If you are not fighting there must be something wrong with the way you two behave with each other. Tiny differences are allowed for the loving make up sessions that follow. Happy couples have a trend of keeping it low when they fight, instead of arguing with each other, they reason and see the other side of the story.Of course at times it’s difficult to listen to the other person’s outbursts but they still do.

        7. They don’t make a mountain out of a molehill.

        Happy couples stay away from the melodrama and underplay their issues.They learn eventually to avoid noticing the mistakes that their partner has made and focus on the positives sides.The wife ignores that her husband missed helping her with the laundry as he was talking with his friend over the phone.The husband eats the half baked cake anyways as he knows the wife had too much work on her hands.

        8. They don’t cheat,they express honestly.

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          Life is too short for lies especially with the person with whom you are supposed to grow old with. Sharing a roof, they are going to find out about it eventually.Happy couples keep the cheating stuff off the table.They don’t cheat their partner in anything, may it involve a mere phone call or planning for a trip. Being blatant is way better than lying only to break your promise at a later date. At the unfortunate event of the marriage not going anywhere, they tell their partners up front rather than date another person simultaneously.

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          9. They don’t procrastinate.

          They deal with things or chores before they get too ugly. Whether it is about doing the dishes, booking the movie tickets, planning for a trip or discussing about the expenses, they prefer to do it right away when the thought is fresh in their minds. Also delaying the tasks at hand might be offending to the other person.

          10. They don’t play the family card.

          Happy couples have two simple rules concerning family. They don’t drag the family into fights and they don’t compare one another to their family members. Fights are concerning both and they remain confined within the four walls of the room. Happy couple’s families are blissfully unaware of the problems. Neither do they use statements like “Why don’t you cook the food the way my mother does?”.

          11. They don’t use the self-pity trick.

          Happy couples recognize that self pity and self loathing gets you nowhere. Instead you are despised by the other person.In the event of a fight, happy couples never say things like “You are so cruel to me” or “”What did I do to deserve this?”. At times their emotions get the better of them, but they still try to keep it subtle by changing the topic or asking the other person calmly what made them react this way.

          12. They don’t cling on,they give space.

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            Happy couples love doing things together that they enjoy. But they recognize that they both need individual moments of glory, too. There are some things that you enjoy that they other person doesn’t. Instead of clinging on and coaxing the other person to do what you want, you have to encourage your partner to do what they want.People in a happy relationship don’t give up their dreams, neither do they let the other person forget theirs.

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            13. They don’t always have their way.

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              Happy couples recognize that in relationships sometimes you need to think more about the other person than about yourself. They focus on giving rather than receiving. As a result the other person always feels comforted that his or her interests and thoughts matter.

              14. They don’t find life OK, they find it awesome.

              Happy couples always have something to look forward to .Of course life does get monotonous at times but they pep it up with surprises, vacations and friday nights.When questioned by others how life in general is they always say “It’s Rocking”.

              15. They don’t stop trying.

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                Everyone goes through a rough patch but happy couples really know how to pull it all together.Maybe they are having endless discussions without reaching a solution.Maybe they are not agreeing on the new school that their daughter is about to join. Or maybe their work lifes are driving them crazy. But they never stop trying to find compromises.

                Lastly, happy couples are normal couples. They are not celebrities whose everyday life is a movie. Happy couples are the ones who survive the tiring days, the endless house work,the non stop cooking sessions, the hectic weekdays and the lazy weekends.While they are running to their workplaces, doing the dishes, vacuuming the house and refueling the car, they still find time to celebrate their love.

                Featured photo credit: Happy Couple via i.huffpost.com

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                Last Updated on January 15, 2021

                7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

                7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

                The popular idiomatic saying that “actions speak louder than words” has been around for centuries, but even to this day, most people struggle with at least one area of nonverbal communication. Consequently, many of us aspire to have more confident body language but don’t have the knowledge and tools necessary to change what are largely unconscious behaviors.

                Given that others’ perceptions of our competence and confidence are predominantly influenced by what we do with our faces and bodies, it’s important to develop greater self-awareness and consciously practice better posture, stance, eye contact, facial expressions, hand movements, and other aspects of body language.

                Posture

                First things first: how is your posture? Let’s start with a quick self-assessment of your body.

                • Are your shoulders slumped over or rolled back in an upright posture?
                • When you stand up, do you evenly distribute your weight or lean excessively to one side?
                • Does your natural stance place your feet relatively shoulder-width apart or are your feet and legs close together in a closed-off position?
                • When you sit, does your lower back protrude out in a slumped position or maintain a straight, spine-friendly posture in your seat?

                All of these are important considerations to make when evaluating and improving your posture and stance, which will lead to more confident body language over time. If you routinely struggle with maintaining good posture, consider buying a posture trainer/corrector, consulting a chiropractor or physical therapist, stretching daily, and strengthening both your core and back muscles.

                Facial Expressions

                Are you prone to any of the following in personal or professional settings?

                • Bruxism (tight, clenched jaw or grinding teeth)
                • Frowning and/or furrowing brows
                • Avoiding direct eye contact and/or staring at the ground

                If you answered “yes” to any of these, then let’s start by examining various ways in which you can project confident body language through your facial expressions.

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                1. Understand How Others Perceive Your Facial Expressions

                A December 2020 study by UC Berkeley and Google researchers utilized a deep neural network to analyze facial expressions in six million YouTube clips representing people from over 140 countries. The study found that, despite socio-cultural differences, people around the world tended to use about 70% of the same facial expressions in response to different emotional stimuli and situations.[1]

                The study’s researchers also published a fascinating interactive map to demonstrate how their machine learning technology assessed various facial expressions and determined subtle differences in emotional responses.

                This study highlights the social importance of facial expressions because whether or not we’re consciously aware of them—by gazing into a mirror or your screen on a video conferencing platform—how we present our faces to others can have tremendous impacts on their perceptions of us, our confidence, and our emotional states. This awareness is the essential first step towards

                2. Relax Your Face

                New research on bruxism and facial tension found the stresses and anxieties of Covid-19 lockdowns led to considerable increases in orofacial pain, jaw-clenching, and teeth grinding, particularly among women.[2]

                The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research estimates that more than 10 million Americans alone have temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ syndrome), and facial tension can lead to other complications such as insomnia, wrinkles, dry skin, and dark, puffy bags under your eyes.[3])

                To avoid these unpleasant outcomes, start practicing progressive muscle relaxation techniques and taking breaks more frequently throughout the day to moderate facial tension.[4] You should also try out some biofeedback techniques to enhance your awareness of involuntary bodily processes like facial tension and achieve more confident body language as a result.[5]

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                3. Improve Your Eye Contact

                Did you know there’s an entire subfield of kinesic communication research dedicated to eye movements and behaviors called oculesics?[6] It refers to various communication behaviors including direct eye contact, averting one’s gaze, pupil dilation/constriction, and even frequency of blinking. All of these qualities can shape how other people perceive you, which means that eye contact is yet another area of nonverbal body language that we should be more mindful of in social interactions.

                The ideal type (direct/indirect) and duration of eye contact depends on a variety of factors, such as cultural setting, differences in power/authority/age between the parties involved, and communication context. Research has shown that differences in the effects of eye contact are particularly prominent when comparing East Asian and Western European/North American cultures.[7]

                To improve your eye contact with others, strive to maintain consistent contact for at least 3 to 4 seconds at a time, consciously consider where you’re looking while listening to someone else, and practice eye contact as much as possible (as strange as this may seem in the beginning, it’s the best way to improve).

                3. Smile More

                There are many benefits to smiling and laughing, and when it comes to working on more confident body language, this is an area that should be fun, low-stakes, and relatively stress-free.

                Smiling is associated with the “happiness chemical” dopamine and the mood-stabilizing hormone, serotonin. Many empirical studies have shown that smiling generally leads to positive outcomes for the person smiling, and further research has shown that smiling can influence listeners’ perceptions of our confidence and trustworthiness as well.

                4. Hand Gestures

                Similar to facial expressions and posture, what you do with your hands while speaking or listening in a conversation can significantly influence others’ perceptions of you in positive or negative ways.

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                It’s undoubtedly challenging to consciously account for all of your nonverbal signals while simultaneously trying to stay engaged with the verbal part of the discussion, but putting in the effort to develop more bodily awareness now will make it much easier to unconsciously project more confident body language later on.

                5. Enhance Your Handshake

                In the article, “An Anthropology of the Handshake,” University of Copenhagen social anthropology professor Bjarke Oxlund assessed the future of handshaking in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic:[8]

                “Handshakes not only vary in function and meaning but do so according to social context, situation and scale. . . a public discussion should ensue on the advantages and disadvantages of holding on to the tradition of shaking hands as the conventional gesture of greeting and leave-taking in a variety of circumstances.”

                It’s too early to determine some of the ways in which Covid-19 has permanently changed our social norms and professional etiquette standards, but it’s reasonable to assume that handshaking may retain its importance in American society even after this pandemic. To practice more confident body language in the meantime, the video on the science of the perfect handshake below explains what you need to know.

                6. Complement Your Verbals With Hand Gestures

                As you know by now, confident communication involves so much more than simply smiling more or sounding like you know what you’re talking about. What you do with your hands can be particularly influential in how others perceive you, whether you’re fidgeting with an object, clenching your fists, hiding your hands in your pockets, or calmly gesturing to emphasize important points you’re discussing.

                Social psychology researchers have found that “iconic gestures”—hand movements that appear to be meaningfully related to the speaker’s verbal content—can have profound impacts on listeners’ information retention. In other words, people are more likely to engage with you and remember more of what you said when you speak with complementary hand gestures instead of just your voice.[9]

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                Further research on hand gestures has shown that even your choice of the left or right hand for gesturing can influence your ability to clearly convey information to listeners, which supports the notion that more confident body language is readily achievable through greater self-awareness and deliberate nonverbal actions.[10]

                Final Takeaways

                Developing better posture, enhancing your facial expressiveness, and practicing hand gestures can vastly improve your communication with other people. At first, it will be challenging to consciously practice nonverbal behaviors that many of us are accustomed to performing daily without thinking about them.

                If you ever feel discouraged, however, remember that there’s no downside to consistently putting in just a little more time and effort to increase your bodily awareness. With the tips and strategies above, you’ll be well on your way to embracing more confident body language and amplifying others’ perceptions of you in no time.

                More Tips on How to Develop a Confident Body Language

                Featured photo credit: Maria Lupan via unsplash.com

                Reference

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