By Janet Winterbourne: www.janetwinterbourne.com
A genuine relationship is far more than trying out some cute relationship goals. Whether you’re just starting out with a new partner or you’re getting ready to make a lifetime commitment, it’s worth reflecting on what makes for real relationship goals.
We live in an age when the term relationship goals has become a part of the trendy vernacular. It’s more a hashtag than anything else, but we all seem to know what it means. A beautiful photo of a gorgeous couple walking on the beach. Relationship goals. A sweet text message sent from a boyfriend to his girlfriend. Relationship goals.
If you’re in or have been in a relationship, you probably know that the ideal love story is…well, a myth. Love is not all butterflies, rainbows, and passion. It’s work, effort and often not very glamorous.
Here are some relationship goals that we are worth pursuing:
- Make it through hard times together
You’re kidding yourself if you think that love is always easy and conflict-free. Those who “never fight” are more than likely bottling up some issues. Tackling conflict with your partner is one of the ways in which to grow and bond. We’re all human and flawed and some of the strongest relationships are those that have gone through the toughest times.
- Support one another’s dream
A lot of the typical romantic, soul-mate type language uses phrases like “your other half.” But it’s a fallacy that another person completes you. Not only does this idea set you up for an unhealthy kind of dependency but it also puts undue pressure on a relationship and on the other person.
- Become the best version of yourself
This is a gift both to yourself and to your partner and it is the epitome of healthy relationship goals. Growth is a huge part of realizing your potential in life. In your partnership, make the effort to grow into an increasingly more awesome version of yourself.
- Learn one anothers love language and become fluent in it
Learn how to show your partner love in the way he or she best experiences love.
The way you experience love is called your love language, and the idea comes from a relationship book by Gary Chapman ‘The Five Love Languages.’ The book explains that there are five primary love languages, and each of us has one or two that most fills up our empty “love tank.”
It’s essential that you make the effort to understand how your partner prefers to give and receive love. For some, verbal signals are the way he or she feels most loved. For example, thoughtful messages and cards or hearing the words “I love you.”
Another partner’s love language may be physical touch. He or she feels most loved when interacting physically with his/her significant other. There are many other ways that people express love and enjoy being and feeling loved. Make it your mission to find out your partners love language.
- Build your history of us
No matter what happens along the way, your history cannot be destroyed or changed. Going through life together and creating milestones enriches the story of ‘us’. Knowing a person like the back of your hand. Growing so close to a person that you feel there’s almost no mystery left.
While that’s not necessarily “new and exciting,” the depth and profoundness of such a foundation is the springboard for a richer, more intense love.