Updated: Jul 17
Strong relationships don't just happen by chance, they are built to last. Strong relationships need a firm foundation, support, and infrastructure to withstand the trials of life. While relationships can be hard, having successful relationships is not only possible but probable when you have a strong structure for the relationship to thrive in. This article introduces the building blocks of strong relationships, but additional articles will go into more detail about each component.
Trust is the foundation of all relationships. It is impossible to have a healthy, thriving relationship without trust. If trust is not present, there will always be insecurities that will hold back sharing openly and truly engaging in the relationship. If trust has been broken in a relationship, it is possible to rebuild it, but it will take work.
Love is the framework that holds the structure together. It is woven into every part of the relationship, but it is not the only aspect needed to keep the relationship alive. While love can bring deep emotional reactions, it is not limited to a feeling, which is important to remember.
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The walls of a strong relationship are positive character traits such as honesty, integrity, loyalty, and faithfulness. Poor character breaches the walls and structure of the relationship. For instance, it is difficult to maintain trust when you frequently tell lies. Character provides structure and room for intimacy and connection with others.
Communication is the plumbing of the relationship. It keeps everything flowing properly. You typically know it when you have clogged plumbing in your house, just as you will recognize the stench in your relationships when communication is not functioning correctly.
You furnish your relationships with memories and experiences together. Just as you want to display the nicer things in our home, keeping the good experiences close to your heart is best. It's best to choose to not focus your attention on the negative times, especially if the issues from those experiences have been resolved. Focusing constantly on the negative things is like throwing dirty laundry all over your house and expecting to enjoy the environment.
Finally, commitment provides protection for your relationship. You will face storms in life and you have to be prepared to weather the storm before it happens. Commitment recognizes that there will be hard times, but you decide to stick it out ahead of time. It carries you through when you feel out of control.
If you are going through a difficult time in a relationship, it can feel overwhelming to try to fix everything. You do it one step at a time, starting with the foundation. There is hope, but it takes hard work and dedication.