I interrupt the usually scheduled program of social media and technology posts with this little relationship post I felt compelled to write. My blogging has always been inspired by helping others in any way I can. Sometimes that strays from my professional world. This time around it’s about relationships. Over the past few years, I’ve been through some tremendous life challenges and changes and have learned so much that I feel compelled to share what I feel I’ve learned. One of the biggest things I’ve experienced is meeting and being with someone that works on every level. And honestly, I’m not so sure I could have figured it out without going through what I have.
It goes without saying that being attracted to someone, sexual chemistry, etc etc, certainly needs to be there, but those are surface things that you should know pretty quickly and should be a given with anyone you’re with for a short period of time. So without further ado, here are the top 5 things I think can contribute to relationship success. If you have these 5 things nailed down, lock that person down!
- Being Best Friends – A lot of couples probably think that they are, or pretend that they are, but this is actually pretty rare. So how do you know if you truly are best friends with your significant other? Well, I don’t know if there is an exact science, but I think it comes down to a few things I’ve noticed now that I’ve found someone where I authentically feel this way. First off, I ALWAYS want to be with her. Not in a creepy, pathetic way, but I honestly never get tired of being with her. In every relationship I’ve been in, I’ve reached a point where I’d definitely long for some me time in some way, but this time around, not so much. Of course it’s healthy to have other friends, and do other things, and we certainly do, but even when I do, I miss her, and prefer her to just be along for the ride every time. She’s the first person I want to tell about anything, the first person I go to for advice and to bounce things off of, and there isn’t anything I wouldn’t tell or share with her. She’s the first mate I’ve had that can honestly say is my best friend and it is certainly the #1 reason we work.
- Common Interests – Too many times this is an area that can get overlooked early in relationships. You meet someone, you have the hots for them…everything is new, and not having too many (if any) common interests isn’t that big of a deal, because you guys just like being with each other. Fast forward a few years, and a lack of common interests rears its ugly head. Because that honeymoon period won’t last forever, and you’re going to need to have some things that you both love to do together. Without it, it’s a recipe for disaster. You don’t have to have everything in common, but something…anything is going to go a long way towards maintaining a long term relationship.
- Emotional Intelligence – Here’s a good article to begin to understand the concept of emotional intelligence and assess your own. I love this mode of thinking and I’ve come to really appreciate being with someone that shares this with me. A few years ago, I just wouldn’t have gotten this, but having been through a failed relationship, and now meeting someone who matches me in this area, it’s just huge. It contributes to us practically never getting into fights, dealing with disagreements and personality differences with ease, and just overall, making our relationship effortless.
- You’ve Both Dealt With Lots of Adversity – I have found over the years that the people that I have gotten along with the best, and have built the deepest relationships with are those that have experienced their fair share of adversity in their life. The bottom line is, if you are a person that has had to deal with some significant life experiences and rebound from them, chances are, you don’t sweat the small stuff. You don’t fight about the dishes, dirty laundry, argue about silly things. It’s not worth it. You’ve been through much deeper shit, so why waste any anger or stress over the little things? Typically people that that have been through a lot have learned to do just that. It only makes sense that being in a relationship with someone that shares a similar life path will lessen the amount of things you bicker about.
- Shared Sense of Humor – We laugh all the time. ALL the time. I make her laugh, she makes me laugh, we laugh at the same stuff. There are few days that go by that we don’t. It feels amazing. I mean…outside of sex, does anything really feel as good as laughing? No. And it’s good for you.
Those are the 5 things that I’ve learned. Everything else is icing on the cake. And I’ve got a pretty amazing cake going. I’d love to hear from any of you reading this your thoughts and any additional ones you’d add to the list.