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Healthy Relationships Keep Stress At Bay 

 

A healthy relationship requires ongoing attention and effort which is required from both partners. At times gifts and getaways have been used as ways to express love and affection in a relationship. However, there are other intangible ways to promoting a healthy relationship that can be much more effective. Research shows that the healthier your relationship, the less likely you are to experience stress and frustration in other areas of your life. This Valentine’s Day, Dr. Thoraiya Kanafani, Clinical Psychologist and Ms. Nicole El Marj, MSc. Educational Neuroscience at The Human Relations Institute & Clinics JLT Dubai offers some useful insights and strategies to help keep your relationship healthy:

 

  • Communicate better: Your partner cannot read your mind, so make sure that you speak openly to one another.
  • Set realistic expectations: This helps you to avoid becoming frustrated or disappointed.
  • Listen: Don’t interrupt your partner when they are speaking.
  • Compromise: Learn to give and take equally.
  • Be supportive: Men and women understand, process, and deal with information in different ways. It is important to support your partner in any way they need, rather than what you think they need.
  • Express mutual respect: Show your partner that you truly value their desires, wishes, and feelings even if they are different to yours.
  • Laugh together: Smiling and laughing will make you happier and healthier; and it allows your entire body to release endorphins and relax. Humor can diffuse many situations.
  • Have a date-night: Go to a movie together, try a new restaurant, go dancing, or simply create a routine to check in with one another on a weekly basis.
  • Let go of the past: Learn to forgive one another for past mistakes. You do not necessarily need to forget, but it is important to let go.
  • Understand that nobody is perfect: Don’t try to change your significant other. Take them as they are. Everybody has flaws.
  • Accept that conflicts are inevitable: Try to discuss one thing at a time so that the argument does not lead to a spiral of unrelated matters. Try to solve your disagreements in a fair manner. Sometimes it’s okay to agree to disagree.  Work on trying to understand one another’s perspective and more importantly, learn to choose your battles.

 

Photo credit: Lake Effects Photography / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

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