Positive psychology

Positive psychology acknowledges the relationship as important to people's sense of well-being. People require relationships to help them maintain their moods, increase their self-esteem, and feel connected. Psychologists have enough evidence to back up this argument. It's tough to fathom life without people. A person's life can involve relationships that allow her to adapt, grow, and express her true identity while still reaping the benefits of self-fulfillment with some dedication and work. An close relationship, in particular, is the key to happiness and well-being. Relationships, on the other hand, are not always easy to manage. According to statistics, more than 40% of new marriages end in divorce. This study identifies that poor relationships have detrimental effects on well-being and thus suggests important strategies that can help engaged couples to maintain healthy relationships.

Effects of relationships

The impacts of relationships on well-being vary since it depends on the quality of the relationship. Baumgardner and Crothers (2009) identify that being in a supportive, happy, positive relationship improves the well-being of a partner, whereas being in an abusive or unhappy relationship can be stressful and detrimental. Relationship conflicts can interfere with mental and physical health.


Some couples manage to thrive in marriage while others fail to survive. The reality is that it takes some effort to keep relationships healthy. There are strategies that couples can apply to strengthen and maintain their intimate relationships, regardless of what challenges they encounter together.

Maintaining the right ratio

The secret to maintaining a healthy relationship is to ensure that positives outweigh negatives in the relationships by at least a 5:1 ratio. If a partner has a lot of complaints, she can counterbalance that with a lot of affection, recognition, praise, and appreciation for all things which go right in her life. A partner can alter a complaint to become a request to help avoid accusations in a relationship. Furthermore, a relationship is a two-way thing (i.e. it is about receiving and giving). In a healthy relationship, a person does not expect to get all of her needs unrealistically met by her partner (Baumgardner and Crothers, 2009). A partner should not just receive, but should also give (i.e. it is a commitment). Moreover, partners should set aside their pride and should accept and appreciate their differences.

Keeping intimacy real

This crucial aspect of a healthy relationship is to make intimacy and physical contact a priority. Partners should have shared activities, whether engaging in conversation, going out to play golf, watching a movie or even engaging in sexual relations to refresh their relationship. It is a constant struggle to try out new things so that to spice up a relationship. Each partner can enjoy time apart from the other or can enjoy time together.

Handling arguments

Some disputes are unavoidable in a relationship, though it is how to handle such arguments that make the difference between unhealthy and healthy relationships. Conflicts cannot be avoided in a relationship, but partners should not vent anger towards each in such disagreements. Instead, they should know how to manage anger and should use that awareness to express more constructively and directly their concerns and needs.


Communication is a key to healthy relationships. Healthy partners make time to communicate regularly to stay connected with each other. Examples of communication strategies for addressing disputes include trying to figure out what a partner is feeling, listening to her view points, and trying to make her feel happy.

When to seek help

Every relationship has challenges, but certain factors are more likely to cause hiccups in a relationship. Often parenting decisions and finances cause recurring conflicts. If approached, psychologists can play an important role in helping partners to improve communication and understand healthy ways to maintain their relationship beyond conflicts. Baumgardner and Crothers (2009) reveal that partners should not wait until a relationship indicates symptoms of anxiety before working to strengthen the union. Psychologists can help partners understand skills such as dealing with conflict, effective listening, and good communication, which demonstrate to minimize the risk of divorce.


A profound experience that couples can have in their lives is the connection they have with each other. Supportive and positive relationships help partners to feel happier, healthier, and more satisfied with their lives. But sometimes, relationships are exhausting and even challenging. Couples with poor relationships are more likely to suffer from loneliness, stress, and depression, which are powerful to weaken their health. Thus, it is important for partners to understand strategies that can help them build more healthy and positive relationships in all areas of their lives.


Baumgardner, S & Crothers, M. (2009). Positive psychology. Boston: Pearson education.

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