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Tips for a healthy relationship

For decades, researchers have reviewed thousands of relationship studies. They've determined there's not just one thing that makes them work. Some common behaviors that build good relationships are having fun, communicating, and resolving conflict.1 Let’s look at some keys to successful relationships a little more deeply. 

Focus on having fun together

A sense of humor can be a positive trait that helps during tough times. It can be a stress reducer and contribute to solving problems more easily. Also, find an activity you like doing together, like a shared hobby or a bike ride together.

Stay connected through communication

Good communication is fundamental and healthy in any relationship. Positive emotional connections help to create safety and happiness. Good communication takes work and can go far when working through problems and challenges.

Manage conflict well

Conflict is sure to happen in any relationship, but to keep a relationship strong, both people need to communicate effectively with one another and demonstrate active listening. Doing so, helps maintain and strengthen the relationship. 
Each person should work to respectfully resolve conflict by making sure arguments are fair, exercising forgiveness and sacrifice, and using “I” statements to communicate how you feel. Exercising active listening can help you find common ground. 
Other ways to build and support healthy relationships are helping a partner cope with stress, and demonstrating generosity and gratitude. 

Being yourself in a relationship

Building a set of shared experiences can be important in the beginning stages of a relationship. However, keeping interests outside of the relationship and paying attention to your own sense of identity is important too. 
Healthy boundaries can help couples maintain their independence. Without healthy boundaries your relationships can become toxic, unfulfilling, and affect your mental health. Boundaries aren’t permanent, they should be reevaluated and revised. Oftentimes, in long-term relationships, they’ll need to be adjusted as the relationship evolves.2 

Are you ready for marriage or long-term commitment?

Consider these statements to help see if you’re ready for marriage or long-term commitment. 
  • We handle conflict in a constructive way. 
  • We accept each other as we are. 
  • We’ve talked about our goals and priorities, and we want the same things. 
  • We’re ready to publicly commit to each other and to our relationship. 
  • We’re committed to building a stable foundation together. 

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More to explore

1. "Tips for Building a Healthy Relationship," HelpGuide, February 28, 2023, 2. "Setting Healthy Boundaries in Relationships," HelpGuide, March 1, 2023,

This information is general in nature and provided for educational purposes only.