The Tiny Exercise The Healthiest Couples Practice Daily Without Skipping

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Joined: Nov 2022

Photo: TimeImage Production / Shutterstock The Tiny Exercise The Healthiest Couples Practice Daily Without Skipping

If you want to create healthy relationships in your life with the people you love, developing good habits — like a daily gratitude practice — can help deepen your connection with them. Gratitude is an incredibly beneficial habit to develop. It might actually be one of the most necessary parts of any romantic relationship.

Expressing authentic and specific gratitude for your partner consistently is a relationship with what oxygen is for your lungs. You can live on diminished oxygen, for sure; visit high altitudes to understand this feeling. Breathing becomes something you actively think about.

Your ability and desire to express authentic gratitude in your key relationship is something you think about in the beginning and over time, much like coming down the mountain, it becomes a part of who and how you are. Several key reasons relationships are fostering expressed gratitude are happier, healthier, and more resilient than those that do not. The key distinction that’s important here is that gratitude is expressed. So often, you think good, kind, and loving thoughts but you never tell your partner these thoughts.



Just imagine you only heard from your partner that they loved you once and it was expected to sustain you for the next twenty years of your relationship. You would feel like the oxygen in your lungs was no longer available in a very short time. Expressing gratitude authentically, consistently, and with specificity helps to ensure your relationship “oxygen level” is always full.

The first impact of expressed gratitude is to establish and deepen the communal strength of your relationship. Communal strength refers to the degree of responsibility for a partner’s welfare and is referenced in depth in a study that demonstrated how gratitude has a direct correlation to a relationship with communal strength. You know that building muscle while you’re not ill will help you maintain your ability to be healthy in the future? Well, gratitude works the same way; it’s a relationship “muscle.” When you feel and act in this sense of responsibility or joint relationship, you’re an active part of how the relationship forms and supports the growth of each party in the relationship.

As the communal strength of the relationship deepens, it becomes a place for each person to refine the “being” they’re meant to be. The safety of a relationship steeped in gratitude allows for the tough stuff to be worked out with grace, love, and accountability. As each member of the relationship evolves, so does the relationship. One of the amazing things that happen is when the relationship begins to develop its own “couples’ resilience”, which means that you and your partner will have the strength and experience to push through the difficult times ahead, whatever they may be. This refinement comes with time and perhaps some struggle, but each time the relationship makes it through a new difficulty, your communal strength as partners increases.

Secondly, relationships under stress (not abusive in any way) also benefit greatly from the gratitude that is shared. According to a study, gratitude creates a tighter, healthier relationship between the person expressing gratitude and the person they’re expressing it to, which means your relationship will become stronger just by being grateful. Gratitude may even be an amazing tool to assist relationships in a “rut” or that are mildly neglected.

Often when working with couples in key transitions in their relationships, like people suffering from the death of a child, or “empty nesters”, those going through retirement, etc., a shared gratitude practice is key in assisting the couple through the transition. You’ll both have compassion for each other in a time when you need it, deeply. The way you feel in your relationship is key to your desire and willingness to remain in the relationship. Simply put, gratitude feels good!



Thirdly, gratitude sets the stage for the ability for forgiveness within a healthy relationship. Let’s face it: People are fallible and being in a relationship that offers you the ability to receive and extend forgiveness is vital to your personal growth. Everyone has messed up and hoped that the people in your life would love you anyway.

Gratitude paves the way for forgiveness. When you’re part of a relationship that has gratitude as a core part of its foundation, you have a place that will love and accept you despite — and at times because of — the mistakes you made along the journey.

Please note that this isn’t referring to the “deal breakers” that all relationships will have. But there are common occurrences that happen in everyday life, and even some bigger ones that require forgiveness to get past. People make mistakes, and the simple truth is that it requires gratitude to make forgiveness work. When you forgive one another, you’ll both be more grateful and you’ll deepen your connection to one another and your relationship.

Happy and healthy relationships are so worth the investment because they offer so much in return. The ability to co-create a place to call “home” no matter where you are can transcend the experience of being human. It is in a relationship that you’re most able to work out many of life’s greatest lessons. You’ll share life’s greatest heartaches and celebrate life’s joys. Gratitude is an amazing response to building a better, healthier relationship — are you expressing it daily in yours?

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Alexsys Thompson MLC, BCC is an integration coach, creator of the Trybal Gratitude Journals, and best-selling author.

Source: YourTango


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