I want to start off by saying I am no relationship expert, but by age 25, I think I have gathered enough info to give advice to a friend, or my future child. In this article I am going to give what I think are the top 4 keys to any relationship. Let's start with #4 and work up to #1:
#4 DON'T SETTLE!
I think this is the part where you "listen to your gut". Don't ignore the red flags! I think there are often times people settle, and I don't see how that can work. It starts with knowing your self worth. You are AMAZING. You are LOVED. You are BEAUTIFUL. You are Smart. You are Strong. Anyone who makes you feel any less than this is not worth your time sister! You truly deserve someone who thinks the world of you.
#3 BE YOURSELF
you gotta be YOU! I have plenty of immature moments, and am very awkward most of the time. I've found it so freeing to just embrace my awkwardness instead of thinking of it as a flaw. What I love about my friendships is how they embrace this too. I have truly been blessed with the most amazing friends because I am able to be my true self around them. I don't have to pretend I am something I am not. Relationships that have prevented me from being myself are beyond draining and can suck the energy right out of me.
* spend your time with people who give you energy*
Don't waste your time with people who don't appreciate YOU! Be with people who support you and embrace your amazing and unique personality.
#2 SHARE VALUES
What principles do you live by day to day? When you think of someone you are sharing life with- Do you picture them believing in these principles too? OF COURSE YOU DO! Everyone's values can range, but if I am going to use me as an example- I value faith, family, and spreading love + kindness. Sharing these values with my boyfriend makes us stronger as a couple, and helps to carry out a healthy relationship.
You may value success, education or happiness! It could be a large spectrum of things you put at the top of your list. When you are dating, you are ultimately learning of ones core values through action and trying to see if you are compatible with one another. I encourage you to write down what 3-5 values you have formed, not that someone else has formed for you.
May be a given, but relationships can't survive without trust. It is the backbone to any healthy partnership. Without trust, it can be toxic and take a turn for the ugly.
Trust must go both ways. It must be mutual.
Are you reliable?
Do others have faith in you?
Can others count on you?
Look at your relationships.
Do you have reliable friends/ boyfriend or girlfriend?
Do you have faith in them?
Can you count on them?
The definition of a relationship is 2+ people that are connected. There is no such thing as a one sided relationship, therefore trust must be mutual between the 2+ people connected.
Have you ever felt taken advantage of for being reliable? That you are always there for someone, but when you are need, they can't give you the time of day? Or maybe this is a good time for a self check- Are you dependable for the ones you expect to be there for you? With trust, you can feel free and confident knowing at the end of the day, your friend or partner has your back and will do the right thing even when you are not around. Same goes for you.