The 4 Healthy Habits Of Successful Couples Who Stay In Happy, Long-Term Relationships

4 Good Habits Couples In Healthy Relationships Have That Help Them Stay In Love

Safeguard your relationship.

Doesn’t life often feel like a whirlwind of to-do’s?

Crazy-busy seems to be the buzzword these days. Job commitments, soccer practices, back to school night, hair appointments all clamor for center stage.

With all these other commitments competing for attention, it’s easy for your relationship to morph into those "two ships," passing in the night.  You begin to feel like roommates instead of the loving partners you once were.  

You may make a great tag team for the kids, but where does your marriage fit into all this?  Is it even on the calendar?

Unfortunately, your relationship usually doesn't get much attention until the signs of neglect become too hard to ignore.

You find that you’re bickering more often and may even feel distant and closed off from each other. The fun things you used to do together are now a far off memory.

You might even start to wonder if your relationship is going to work out at all.

But this isn’t really a surprise. Neither of you is getting what you need, and your relationship is certainly not getting what it needs to thrive.

Your relationship is too important to neglect. It's not meant to run on autopilot.

When couples are in distress, they often think their only options are to break up or white-knuckle it in a bad relationship. But there is a third option which is much more proactive and empowering. This option involves consciously and intentionally creating the kind of partnership you really want to have. When you choose this path you don’t just hope and wish for a great relationship, you do what you need to do to make it happen.

And it starts with practicing healthy habits in your relationship.

RELATED: 5 Things Healthy (And Annoyingly Happy) Couples Do Differently

To make sure your relationship doesn't get lost in the shuffle, take these 4 easy steps to create healthy habits in your relationship:

1. Establish rituals of connection.

A ritual is a deliberate action or behavior performed repeatedly in a customary way.  Some couples have a Saturday night ritual of ordering Chinese take out together and then going for a long walk to the ice cream shop. Others make a Wednesday night card game a part of their regular routine.

My husband and I have crazy schedules. We really don’t get to spend much quality time together during the week. Recently, we’ve developed the habit of going to our favorite restaurant every Friday night. It’s our special ritual of connection that fortifies our relationship after a long and hectic week.

2. Schedule quality time together.

In order to make these rituals a consistent part of your relationship, you have to carve out the time to create a new normal together. When you get those calendars out to schedule basketball practices and business meetings, block some time in your schedule for your marriage.

This could mean a Friday evening date night, a walk together around the neighborhood, or just some quiet time on the patio with no distractions.

RELATED: 5 Habits Of The Happiest, Healthiest Couples​

3. Plan ahead to eliminate relationship obstacles.

Decide ahead of time who will arrange the activity, who will get the babysitter if you need one, etc. You can even agree to take turns with this. Preplanning will help make things run smoothly so you’ll be able to enjoy your special time together.

4. Consistently show your love.

Make having fun together a regular and consistent part of your relationship. People say love doesn’t last. But it does if you renew it every day, so show your partner how much you love them in small ways every day.

As you develop these healthy relationship habits, they’ll help nourish and sustain your relationship for the long-haul so you can have a love that lasts.

RELATED: 7 Habits That Make The Happiest Couples So Darn Happy

Christine Wilke, Ed.S is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and a Certified Imago Relationship Therapist who teaches busy professionals how to build supportive, passionate marriages one loving step at a time. Contact her on her website, ChristineWilke.com, or join her FB group, Love Your Marriage, to connect with like minded people who are committed to creating a strong and healthy marriage.