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5 Foundations Every Successful Relationship Needs

5 Foundations Every Successful Relationship Needs

Having a happy and successful relationship can be a struggle.

It seems that all too often, our relationships go downhill over time, and we are left to wonder “why can’t things just be the way they used to be?”.

Foundations are the key to maintaining all the goodness in your relationship. They will determine the quality and success of your relationships years down the track.

“A house must be built on solid foundations if it is to last. The same principle applies to man” – Sai Baba

If you use the following foundations in your relationship, you will have an incredibly long-lasting, happy and successful relationship.

1.   Laugh together

Laughter is a very powerful thing!

Did you know that laughter is even used as a form of therapy? This is because it has such a positive effect on us.

When you laugh with your partner, it shows that you enjoy each others company, feel positive towards one another and actually “like” each other.

“It is impossible for you to be angry and laugh at the same time. Anger and laughter are mutually exclusive and you have the power to choose either”. – Wayne Dyer

That’s right, laughter is a choice! And it involves choosing to feel happy towards each other, and not angry or negative.

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All too often you see couples who are never happy when they are together. They have become frustrated and are used to each other. And sadly, they lose the excitement and the appreciation they once shared for each other.

If you can relate to this, and would like to bring life and joy back into your relationship, then chose laughter.

Choose to make your partner laugh at least once a day.

If you want to, you can even think of it as relationship therapy, since laughing is a real form of therapy!

2.   Know each others love language

Did you know that we all have different love languages?

Love languages are the different ways that we all communicate and understand love.

Your love language and that of your partner can be as different as Chinese and English!

So it is absolutely essential that you learn your partners love language.

“We must be willing to learn our spouses love language if we are to be effective communicators of love” – Dr Gary Chapman

Here are the 5 different love languages:

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  • Words of affirmation
  • Quality time
  • Receiving gifts
  • Acts of service
  • Physical touch

We all have one or two major love languages.

Here is an example of the importance of understanding your partners love language:

  • If your love language is physical touch, a kiss will speak louder than 1000 words – but,
  • If your love language is words of affirmation, one kind or affirming word will speak louder than 1000 kisses

You might be showing love to your partner in every way that you know how and still, they might be telling you that you don’t love them enough. Well, it’s no secret anymore! You need to learn their love language.

3.   Understand love as an action

As you can probably tell from the above point, love is an action.

Love is understanding how your partner feels loved, and then doing it.

People often think that love is a feeling, and that once the feeling disappears – there is little hope for their relationship.

Well it’s absolutely not true!

“Love is a verb. Love – the feeling – is a fruit of love, the verb” – Stephen Covey

This quote shows us that “feeling in love” is just as much of a choice as “Loving as an action”.

When you choose to love your partner (even if they didn’t do anything to deserve it), you are showing them real love. Love, that is unconditional and that does not rely on them loving you first.

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If you view “love as a feeling”, you will both be waiting and waiting – and you still won’t “feel it”.

So understand love as an action and a choice, and then do it! You will have an incredibly happy and fulfilling relationship because of it.

4.    Don’t cross the line

This is one of the most important things to remember for a happy and successful relationship.

There are certain things that we never want to say or do to our partner. These are things that you would consider “crossing the line”.

Maybe for you “crossing the line” means:

  • Losing your temper
  • Yelling or screaming at your partner
  • Saying I hate you
  • Saying something unkind to your partner
  • Using manipulation to get what you want
  • Going to sleep while being angry at your partner
  • Not saying sorry when you know you should have
  • Getting aggressive towards your partner
  • Bringing your partner down because you were angry

These are all damaging things for a relationship, but if you ask any child “Do your parents do any of these things” most of them would probably say yes to a number of them.

My theory is – that once you “cross the line”, it becomes easier and easier to do it again and again.

You might not like to do those things but in the heat of an argument – if you have already said “I hate you” once before, it becomes a LOT easier to say it again.

If you want a happy and successful relationship, try really hard to not “cross the line”.

Your relationship will be so much better off for it and you will stand a better chance at actually “liking each other” years down the track.

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5.   Apologize often

We all make mistakes. We all say and do damaging things to our relationship.

We are simply human.

Successful relationships rely on us admitting when we are wrong and then moving past it.

Apologizing makes the process of moving on 1000% times faster and easier.

When we don’t apologize when we know we should, we are being proud.

Love is not prideful.

“In general, pride is at the bottom of all great mistakes”  John Ruskin

To have a successful relationship, apologize often – so that you don’t make the mistake of being proud.

Well, that’s it for the 5 foundations every relationship needs to have. If you use these foundations, the chances of having an incredibly happy, long-lasting and successful relationship will increase astronomically. Good luck!

Featured photo credit: @Depositphotos.com/gpointstudio via depositphotos.com

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Last Updated on April 19, 2021

How to Deal With Anger (The Ultimate Anger Management Guide)

How to Deal With Anger (The Ultimate Anger Management Guide)

We all lose our temper from time to time, and expressing anger is actually a healthy thing to do in our relationships with others. Expressing our differences in opinion allows us to have healthy conflict and many times come to an agreement or understanding that works for everyone. However, there are times when anger can become overwhelming or damaging, and during these times, it’s important to learn how to deal with anger.

Expressing anger inappropriately can be harmful to relationships, both personal and professional. You may express too much anger, too often, or at times that are only going to make things worse, not better. In this article we will look at anger management techniques that will help you better control your emotions.

Let’s take a deeper look at how to deal with anger.

Expressing Anger

Anger is a natural and normal part of almost any relationship. This includes relationships with your significant other, kids, boss, friends, family, etc. Anger provides us with valuable information if we are willing to listen to it. It clues us in to areas where we disagree with others and things that need to be changed or altered.

Unhealthy Ways to Express Anger

Here are some common yet unhealthy ways to express anger that you should avoid:

Being Passive-Aggressive

This is a term many of us are familiar with. Passive-aggressive behavior happens when someone is angry but uses indirect communication to express their anger.

Some of the more common passive-aggressive behaviors include the silent treatment, making comments about someone behind their back, being grumpy, moody, or pouting, or simply not doing tasks or assignments that they should.

This is a passive-aggressive person’s way of showing their anger. It’s not very productive but extremely common.

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Poorly-Timed

Some people get overwhelmed and express anger in a situation where it can’t really do any good.

An example would be getting angry at one person in front of a crowd of people. All that does is make people uncomfortable and shuts them down. It’s not a healthy way to express anger or disagreement with someone.

Ongoing Anger

Being angry all the time is most often a symptom of something else. It’s healthy and normal to express anger when you disagree with someone. However, if someone is angry most of the time and always seems to be expressing their anger to everyone around them, this won’t serve them well.

Over time, people will start to avoid this person and have as little contact as possible. The reason being is no one likes being around someone who is angry all the time; it’s a no-win situation.

Healthy Ways to Express Anger

What about the healthy ways[1] to adapt? When learning how to deal with anger, here are some healthy ways to get you started.

Being Honest

Express your anger or disagreement honestly. Be truthful about what it is that is making you angry. Sometimes this will entail walking away and thinking about it for a bit before you respond.

Don’t say you’re mad at something someone did or said when it’s really something else that upset you.

Being Direct

Similar to being honest, being direct is a healthy way to express anger.

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Don’t talk around something that is making you angry. Don’t say that one thing is making you angry when it’s really something else, and don’t stack items on top of each other so you can unload on someone about 10 different things 6 months from now.

Be direct and upfront about what is making you angry. Ensure you are expressing your anger to the person who upset you or you are angry at, not to someone else. This is very counterproductive.

Being Timely

When something makes you angry, it’s much better to express it in a timely manner. Don’t keep it bottled up inside of you, as that’s only going to do more harm than good.

Think of the marriages that seem to go up in flames out of nowhere when the reality is someone kept quiet for years until they hit their breaking point.

Expressing anger as it occurs is a much healthier way of using anger to help us guide our relationships in the moment.

How to Deal With Anger

If you feel angry, how should you deal with it right at that moment?

1. Slow Down

From time to time, I receive an email at work that makes me so angry that steam is probably pouring out of my ears.

In my less restrained moments, I have been known to fire off a quick response, and that typically has ended about as well as you might imagine.

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When I actually walk away from my computer and go do something else for a while, I am able to calm down and think more rationally. After that happens, I am able to respond in a more appropriate and productive manner. Doing things that helps you learn how to release anger can make an uncomfortable situation more manageable before it gets out of hand.

2. Focus on the “I”

Remember that you are the one that’s upset. Don’t accuse people of making you upset because, in the end, it’s your response to what someone did that really triggered your anger. You don’t want to place blame by saying something like “Why don’t you ever put away your dishes?” Say something more like “Having dirty dishes laying on the counter upsets me—can you work with me to come to a solution?”

When you are accusatory towards someone, all that does is increase the tension. This doesn’t usually do anything except make your anger rise higher.

3. Work out

When learning how to deal with anger, exercise is a great outlet. If something happens that angers you, see if you have the opportunity to burn off some of the anger.

Being able to hit the gym to get a hard workout in is great. If this isn’t an option, see if you can go for a run or a bike ride. If you are at work when you become angry and the weather permits, at least go outside for a brisk walk.

Besides working some of your anger out through exercise, this also helps to give your mind a chance to work through some ways to address what it is that upset you.

If you’re not sure where to start with an exercise routine, check out Lifehack’s free Simple Cardio Home Workout Plan.

4. Seek Help When Needed

There are times when we could all use some help. Life can be stressful and overwhelming. It’s perfectly fine to seek some help from a mental health professional if it will help you get back to a healthy balance.If you find that you are angry all the time, it might be a good idea to go talk to an expert about learning to control intense emotions. They can give you some sound advice and ideas on how to get your anger to a more manageable and healthy level.

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5. Practice Relaxation

We all seem to lead incredibly busy lives, and that’s a good thing if we are loving the life we are living. That being said, it is very beneficial to our physical and mental well-being to take time out for relaxation.

That can mean spending time doing things that help us calm down and relax, like being around people we enjoy, practicing deep breathing or listening to music. It could be making time for things that help bring us balance like a healthy diet and physical activity.

Many people incorporate techniques such as yoga and meditation to calm their minds and release tension when learning how to deal with anger. Whatever your choice is, ensure you take time out to relax when warning signs of anger start to bubble up.

6. Laugh

Incorporating humor and laughter on a regular basis will help keep anger in check and help you get over a bad mood and feelings of anger more quickly. This isn’t part of formal anger management techniques, but you’ll be surprised by how well it works. Remember, life is a journey that’s meant to be enjoyed fully along the way through healthy emotion. Make sure you take time to laugh and have fun.Surround yourself with people that like to laugh and enjoy life. Don’t work at a job that just causes you stress, which can lead to anger. Work at something you enjoy doing.

7. Be Grateful

It’s easy to focus on the bad in life and the things that cause us negative emotions. It’s vitally important to remind ourselves of all the wonderful things in life that bring us positive emotions, things that we easily forget because we get caught up in the whirlwind of day to day life.

Take time out each day to remind yourself of a few things you are grateful for in order to help you learn how to release anger and invite in more positive feelings.

Final Thoughts

Life can be overwhelming at times. We seem to have constant pressure to achieve more and to always be on the go or motivated. People we are around and situations we are in can cause stress, anger, and negative emotions. At times, it can seem to be too much, and we get angry and our emotions start to get out of control.

During these times, keep in mind that life is an incredible journey, full of wonder and things that bring you joy. When you find yourself angry more often than is healthy, take time out to remember the good things in life—the things that we seem to forget yet bring us so much positive energy and emotions.

Use some of the tips included here to help with how to deal with anger and better control your emotions.

More Resources on Anger Management

Featured photo credit: Andre Hunter via unsplash.com

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