Love

Use This 23-Point Relationship Contract To Strengthen Your Connection

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man and woman smiling and pointing at paper they're both holding onto

We all want to have a relationship that stands the test of time, but we often don't know how to achieve that — and that is where a relationship contract can come into play.

You can make verbal promises, but one or both partners could forget making them.

A written love contract is a great way for couples to maintain a stronger relationship and remember to take their commitments seriously.

What a relationship contract is and isn’t

A relationship isn't a legally binding contract and there's a good reason why — that's not the idea. A relationship contract gives you and your partner a chance to reflect on what you need from one another in your relationship to feel fulfilled, and it's a way of setting expectations to avoid hurdles down the road.

You can discuss what each point means to you, too; for example, you can each define what "support" looks like for you, whether it's setting aside extra time together or doing your share of the chores for a couple of days while you bounce back.

This contract should be a reflection of the two of you and your love and commitment to one another — so have fun, and make it yours!

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After you've had the chance to make any adjustments you'd like, print out the following contract template and sign it along with your partner.

Relationship contract template

Dear [Name of Your Partner],

1. I promise to be gentle with you and your heart.

2. I promise to allow you to have access to my heart.

3. I promise to tell you the full truth even when it’s sometimes scary to do so.

4. I promise to put effort into learning how you most like to be listened to and then listen to you in that way as often as I can.

5. I promise to love and support you when you need it, and lovingly push and encourage you when you need it.

6. I promise that I will make myself as emotionally fulfilled as possible in my own life, in order that I can show up as my best self for our relationship.

7. I promise to be aware of, and own, my own emotional triggers and to never hold you responsible for my emotional response to things.

8. I promise to not waste precious time or energy worrying about who to place blame on. It gets us nowhere and it distracts from our collective goal of coming back to a place of love and connection.

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9. I acknowledge that you are not your parents, and I am not my parents, and although we likely have some residual habits that they passed on to us, we can choose a new way if their way doesn’t work for us.

10. I promise to assume that you have the best of intentions.

11. I promise to assume that you are always coming from a place of love.

12. I promise to love and accept every side of you and all of your emotions, moods, and insecurities.

13. I promise to support you in your career, hobbies, passions, and anything else that makes you happy.

14. I promise to continually put effort into our relationship.

15. I promise to make distraction-free connection time a priority on a regular basis.

16. I promise to have a one-on-one date night with you at least once every month, no matter how busy or stressful life becomes.

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17. I promise to always be open to talking about our sex life, no matter how challenging certain conversations might be to have.

18. I promise to always look for how you might be hurting in the moments when you try to push me away.

19. I promise to never hold the relationship hostage. I will never say, “Then why are we even doing this?” or threaten our partnership in any way.

20. I promise to always cherish our relationship and celebrate it as the safe container for growth that it is.

21. I promise to always make you feel as safe, comfortable, and seen as possible.

22. Regarding all of the aforementioned statements, I acknowledge that when I say “never” or “always,” I will inevitably make mistakes. I am human, and I am not perfect. But I promise to always do my best and to promptly acknowledge when I have messed up.

23. And above all else, I promise to love you.

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

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Terms and conditions

When you first sit down to sign the contract, make a decision about when you want to revisit the contract. Maybe it's six months from now, a year, or any other length of time that suits you.

But it's a good idea to check in, see if you're both in alignment with the promises you agreed to, and talk about whether you want to change anything.

After all, life can change a lot, even after short periods of time, and you may have new commitments you wish to make to one other as part of the natural progression of your relationship or due to a new set of circumstances in each of your lives.

Taking time to sit down together and evaluate how you're prioritizing each other's needs is a wonderful way of showing each other how much you care — not just about one another — but the long-term health of your relationship.

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Jordan Gray is a five-time #1 Amazon best-selling author, public speaker, and relationship coach with more than a decade of practice behind him. His work has been featured in The New York Times, BBC, Forbes, The Huffington Post, and more.

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This article was originally published at Jordan Gray Consulting. Reprinted with permission from the author.