Love can seem like the end-all-be-all, the pièce de résistance for many searching for their ideal partner in life. Many search for “the one” via bars or online websites and TV commercials for popular online dating sites profess that “you, too, can find love.”
But, is love all we need? Though highly sought after, it is not all we need. We actually need much more for a successful relationship, but love can be the foundation upon which all the rest is laid. Below are six tips for a successful relationship.
Below Are 6 Things More Important In a Relationship Than Love:
Respect is numero uno in my eyes. Respect means recognizing one’s value. Trust is a component of respect. They take you seriously. They support you. Respect can mean different things to different people, but it is based on treating each other fairly and kindly.
None of us are perfect. We all have moments where we say or do the “wrong” thing. We need to feel that it’s OK to make mistakes and to be ourselves and relaxed. No one wants to be in a relationship where the other person expects perfection—that is not real life, and honestly a bar too high for a successful relationship. A relationship needs to be warm, inviting, forgiving, and loving.
3. Communication skills:
Love is a feeling, but without the more practical skill of communicating it, it can be left on deaf ears. We have all been there—in a relationship and the two of you just can’t talk about anything without fighting. This often comes down to communication skills. Finding a person who is a good communicator about their emotions is a diamond in the rough. Knowing how to communicate and resolve conflict are two key factors to relationship success.
Love is nothing without the ability of both parties to stay true to each other, and only to each other. Relationships between people who seemingly love each other go awry due to the unfaithfulness of one or both all the time. We see it in entertainment headlines daily. Sometimes one says they felt like they wanted something different or that they were lonely. This applies to number three above. Communication is paramount, especially regarding what you’re unhappy about. Being able to have conversations on difficult topics is a sign of true, productive communication. Love without fidelity will not work.
5. Things in common:
Couples can sometimes grow apart and start to live separate lives. They each respectively go out with the guys, or the girls, and start to spend less time together. It is very important to have things you both enjoy doing together. In fact, I remember a counselor telling me years ago that the more things you do together, that you only do together, the better and more fulfilled the relationship will be. For instance, if you love going to the movies with your partner, keep that activity sacred for only you two. It will make your time there seem more special because you do it with no one else.
6. Similar life goals:
My fiancé and I love each other dearly, but there was certainly a time when we did not see eye to eye on our futures. I saw myself as being married and being a family with all of our children. He could not, for a long time, see himself married again. The pain from his divorce was fresh and still hurt. Over time, with counseling and much soul-searching, we are getting married later this summer. Even though a couple may love each other, they may see their futures very differently. This is an insurmountable incompatibility. A couple must have similar thoughts about their futures for both partners to be happy in the end. Perhaps one wants children and the other doesn’t—the couple must come together on their future goals or it will not work.
While a relationship cannot work without love, there are other areas of compatibility that must exist for the relationship to work. So, bring on love, with all its pomp and star-filled nights, but be practical and realize the other parts of a relationship that must be present for it to be successful.