No relationship is perfect, but there are some key elements that happy relationships tend to have in common. Unhealthy dynamics in these areas can cause people to express their emotions, or not express them, in very unhealthy ways.
People in healthy relationship with one another communicate. We all have different ways of communicating and expressing ourselves. Speaking is just one of many forms of communication. For some people, speaking can be very difficult, especially when dealing with sensitive subjects and challenging situations. Some people find writing out their thoughts much easier than speaking and prefer to communicate by letter, email or text when something is too tough to talk about in person. Others use their art to express themselves. Many people have a tendency to shut down altogether and have a very hard time communicating their thoughts and emotions. And some people dominate the interaction, not allowing others the chance to speak, to be heard and understood.
There are countless communication styles, as varied as we are as people. Healthy dynamics encourage people to figure out their communication styles, and to work with each other to expand their communication skills and strengths. Healthy communication means finding ways of handling conflict, disagreement and emotional subjects in ways that work for everyone, making sure everyone’s needs are met. Healthy relationships encourage listening to understand and empathize, rather than interrupting or rushing to respond.
Mutual respect is a must for healthy partnerships of all kinds, whether family, friend or intimate relationships. Having respect for another person means caring about their emotions, understanding and holding space for their needs, and being sensitive to their challenges. Respecting someone means respecting their boundaries and giving them the same care we would want for ourselves. It means allowing others their autonomy and independence without trying to force our own expectations, issues or concerns upon them. Respect and abuse are mutually exclusive, and once a relationship experiences any form of abuse, the trust between those people, and the respect between them, can be very hard to rebuild.
If we look closely at our relationships, we might see that they have been lacking respect in various ways- the ways in which we communicate with one another, how we choose to treat each other, and how we resolve conflict.
In our interactions and dynamics with one other, healthy communication, consideration and respect go a long way towards having happy, functioning relationships, as well as healthy minds and hearts.
Improving relationships is a focal point at Enlightened Solutions. We are here to help. Call (833) 801-LIVE.