Happy couples aren’t simply blessed with good fortune – if you pay attention you’ll often notice that they’ve weaved habits into their everyday life which form a tapestry of happiness and stability.
So what makes a happy couple, a happy couple?
1. They joke together
Being in a partnership is based on all those important serious things – such as loyalty, trust, respect – but on top of this, happy couples also share a special world where in-jokes and banter reign supreme. Especially in long-term relationships, playfulness reminds a couple of the chemistry that got them together in the first place, and helps to keep things fresh and exciting. Being able to joke with your partner even acts as a strong buffer against stress, disagreements and conflicts.1
2. They cook together
Or walk together. Or basket weave together. Regardless of what activity it is, happy couples tend to take part in a mutual activity on a regular basis – and genuinely enjoy doing so. It makes sense after all; ideally romantic partners should be excellent friends, and excellent friends commonly have shared hobbies or interests.2
READ MORE: There are five love languages which dictate how we interpret others’ actions. What’s yours?
3. They share intimacy
Contrary to popular belief, intimacy is not all about sex. True intimacy happens when a couple feels safe to exchange personal truths and express vulnerable thoughts or feelings. The act of sharing creates a unique connection and sense of bonding, which brings couples closer together. Happy couples tend to foster intimacy by making time for each other at the beginning of the day or just before they go to bed – as little as 10 minutes of quality exchange per day can keep a relationship feeling alive. As Marriage therapist Dr. Lori Schade explains, ‘Small gestures, big rewards’.3
4. They set date nights
Going on dates isn’t something just reserved for the fresh-in-love ones; happy couples continue to make date plans no matter how many years they’ve been together. Whether it’s eating out at a favourite restaurant, seeing a highly-anticipated theatre piece or simply going on a picnic, spending time together as a twosome invigorates a relationship and allows you time to really enjoy the company of your significant other. An important part of this habit is the planning; happy couples tend to set aside a weekly or fortnightly date to ensure that the date really comes to fruition. It’s about making time for each other and, for that one evening, prioritizing your relationship over everything else.
READ MORE: Our top ten first date questions to test your connection!
5. They speak their partner’s love language
According to Gary Chapman’s New York Times bestseller ‘The Five Love Languages, How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate’, we all have different ways of communicating love and affection; through gifts, quality time, words of affirmation, acts of devotion or physical touch.4 Happy couples know how their partner’s love language, and make an effort to express their feelings in the way their partner will be most receptive to.
Maintaining a flourishing relationship isn’t about acts of grandiosity, it’s the small things that happen in a couple’s day-to-day lives that dictate the overall health and happiness of a relationship. Afterall, how we spend our days is how we spend our lives – so make each day count.
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1) Fixing relationship problems with humour, http://www.helpguide.org/articles/relationships/fixing-relationship-problems-with-humor.htm
2) Friendship and mutual interests http://www.compatibilitycode.com/book-resources/friendship-and-mutual-interests/
3) Dr. Lori Schade, https://drlorischade.wordpress.com/
4) Gary Chapman, http://www.5lovelanguages.com/about/gary-chapman/