Gewel Kamps | HealthGreatness

A good relationship will lengthen your life. Learning how to be a good partner will improve every other aspect of your life, and really isn’t as daunting as it seems. The basis for being good to someone is honoring them. Specific things make people feel special and honored. For instance, if they feel listened to, understood, accepted, cherished, and taken seriously, they will more than likely feel loved.

Listening
The ability to listen to your partner will go along way. This holds true for close friends and acquaintances also. When someone is talking, try giving them your absolute full attention. If you have problems with your thoughts wondering, try to make a game out of it. See if you can play detective by paying such close attention to what your partner is saying that you could recite it back to them afterward. Maybe this sounds extreme to some, but the talent of listening is not always easy for people, especially those with sensory issues or attention problems. Try not to interject with your opinion or advice until the person is absolutely done talking, but maintain eye contact throughout, with encouraging gestures such as a nod of the head or the words, “Go, on. I’m listening.”

Role Reversal
Put yourself in your partner’s shoes, so to speak. Again, a useful quality to have with strangers as well as close platonic relationships. Envision what they might perceive in their relationships, at work, or from family members. Just try your hardest to empathize. This exercise not only makes you more emotionally available to your partner by gaining a deeper understanding of them, but it makes you a better person for cultivating empathy intentionally.

Acceptance
Accept your lover fully for who they are. Many of us have heard it said in passing that you shouldn’t try to change people. Well, this is correct. Helping people to change when they are making an effort to change is different, even if you may be the catalyst for that change. In other words, it can’t be forced. That means, accept your partner fully, right now for who they are, or leave them, because anything in the middle causes constant fighting, a dynamic that absolutely will shorten your life.

What if one person is great at these things while the other is left wanting? Unfortunately, that person must ultimately decide if they need more from a partner. The decision to leave or stay depends on how long the relationship has lasted, how in-love the couple still feels (Is it worth it, in other words?), and if the emotionally illiterate person is trying at all to better themselves, sometimes harder to recognize in some than in others.