7) No “Horsemen of the Apocalypse”: This is a term coined by a famous couples researcher named John Gottman who claims to be able to predict divorce with incredible accuracy. His “four horsemen of the apocalypse” are criticism, contempt, defensiveness and stonewalling. His research has shown that couples who demonstrate a high level of these in their relationships are in big trouble.
8) Mutual and Separate Friends: Partners who socialize with other couples and also maintain separate friendships have greater balance in regards to honoring themselves as individuals, within the relationship. This leads to more self satisfaction which translates to relationship satisfaction.
9) Reliability: Most of us want follow-through with our friendships and our partners. If couples do what they say and say what they do, they create an atmosphere of comfort in knowing their words mean something to the other.
10) Relationship Vision: It’s interesting the number of couples I’ve seen who don’t seem to have the big picture of their relationship in mind. Where do they see themselves in ten year? What are their relationship goals? Couples who have created a relationship vision for themselves know where they’re going as they’ve planned it together. They get joy out of reaching for their goals as a team and are less likely to be derailed by surprises down the line.