Relationships make up a huge portion of our social support system, and play a big role in our physical and mental well-being. Whether it’s romantic, platonic, or even work related, relationships offer us the chance to grow and develop our communication skills. They also give us a safe place to practice being vulnerable.
Healthy relationships are based on mutual trust and respect, which means that you should be able to count on your significant other in a variety of situations. That includes knowing that they’ll respect your need to spend time with friends or family outside of the relationship. You should also be able to trust that they won’t do anything that could hurt your body, feelings, or emotions.
Another aspect of healthy relationships is that they are a safe place for each partner to become more balanced. For example, if you tend to be more impulsive than your partner, they can help you slow down. Or, if you are a people-pleaser, they can help you set healthy boundaries.
Finally, healthy relationships build intimacy by spending quality time together and communicating openly and honestly. This means not only talking about everyday things, but also expressing interest in the other person’s experiences and opinions. It also means being a good listener and not interrupting. For example, if you’re on the phone with your partner and they start talking about their day, put down your cell phone or let it go to voicemail.