We all strive for happiness within our relationships. I mean, if our relationships are no longer fulfilling all of our needs, they're probably dead in the water.
But how do we know we're truly in love? Yes, you should be finding ways to compromise so that you're both getting something out of the relationship, but it can be difficult giving up things or behaviors that make you happy. It turns out true love is more about selflessness - doing things without even having to be asked.
And so the following sex and dating experts have come up with a list of things that the world's happiest couples are consistently doing:
1. Give your partner a surprise card
“Giving your partner a card that says ‘Thinking of you’ or ‘Thank you for all you do’ is such a sweet gesture. It will make him or her feel special and it’s a great reminder to you as well of all you have to be grateful for. An added fun touch would be to leave the card somewhere your loved one will happen on it. My husband loves to leave cards for me in the refrigerator. I often leave his cards under his pillow.”
- Susan Pease Gadoua, marriage therapist and the co-author of The New I Do: Reshaping Marriage for Skeptics, Realists, and Rebels.
2. Check in with your partner as often as you can
“Whether it’s a ‘hello’ text or call to ask, ‘How did it go?’ the happiest couples reach out. They call to say, ‘I’m running late,’ or ‘We just landed,’ or ‘Do you need me to stop at the store on my way home?’ The message: I’m thinking of you. The result: A feeling of being connected, being a key part of each other’s lives.”
― Winifred M. Reilly, marriage and family therapist and author of It Takes One to Tango.
3. Compliment your partner
“This doesn’t have to be a lovey-dovey compliment about being the best wife in the world, but even an offhand remark recognizing someone’s contribution, like ‘great dinner!’ Although some couples do well without positive feedback, the majority of people like at least a little bit of verbal recognition for their contribution, and happy couples are free with positive feedback.”
― Samantha Rodman, psychologist, and dating coach.
4. Pencil a sex date into your diary
“Many couples think scheduling sex is a sign of trouble. They want sex to be spontaneous and organic. In an ideal world, that would be great. But life gets in the way, and unless couples are intentional about having sex, it is often one of the first things to go by the wayside. Couples who carve out designated time for sex intuitively understand the importance and value of sex. They seem to appreciate that sex has psychological and physical benefits. Somehow, they just get it.
― Kimberly Resnick Anderson, sex therapist.