We found this study from Harvard which seems full of easy-to-understand guidance to building and maintaining a healthy and lasting relationship:
- Focus on the positive: Keeping a sunny outlook is not just good advice for life, it is good advice for your relationship. Remark upon the helpful gestures, tell them they look nice, and thank them for their daily efforts.
- Enjoy yourselves: Having a good time is not limited to fancy meals and beach vacations. It is made up of the daily little things, such as walking to the bookstore, enjoying ice cream, or going to the grocery store.
- Don't forget the romance: A feisty physical relationship enhances the long-term commitment.
- Be grateful: Studies have shown that expressing gratitude for your partner increases your own satisfaction with the relationship. The closer you are to somebody, the more important the little words become: thank you, please, and I love you.
- Like yourself: According to the research, high self-esteem for each partner translates into a more stable relationship. It also means that you will be better able to work through conflict when it arises.
Relationships take work, so following these simple (though not always easy) steps, will be energy well spent.