The 5 Ingredients for Lasting Love

Even the shyest souls, romance cynics, and fiercely independent people want someone to grow old and share their life with.

When you think about what makes a lasting, loving relationship, ideas like kindness, humour, shared values, and sexual chemistry may come to mind. While these traits are important, when you find the person who is right for you there are really only five ingredients your relationship will need to go the distance.

Trust

The backbone of any relationship, you need to be able to trust the person you’re with if you’re going to make a life together.

More than simply believing someone’s words, trust is about relying on that person to protect your heart, and knowing they would go to bat for you no matter the situation. It’s counting on them to be kind and loving, even when life gets messy. It’s an unshakeable belief that they’ll be there for you, and will respect you.

Trust doesn’t always come easy, especially if you’ve been wronged in the past. In order to have a healthy, romantic relationship though, you’ll need to let go of any baggage and open yourself up to someone new.

Since trust is built off consistency and earned when actions meet words, if your partner is proving himself to be trustworthy then don’t block him out because someone else has hurt you. After all, without trust in your relationship, there is no reason to carry on together.

Touch

One of the greatest sensations is touch, and when you connect with your partner physically it does wonders for keeping your bond strong.

Even if you’re not the touchy type, make a point to rub your man’s back when he’s had a rough day at work, or interlace fingers while strolling down the street. When you’re sat down together, cuddle in close and don’t be afraid to brush up on him when passing ways.

These little touches are may not seem like a big deal, but they’re significant signs of desire and give your partner a type of attention that is exclusively his own. They let him know that even though the world is spinning around you, he’s still at the front of your mind.

Don’t underestimate the power of physical touch. The person who wants to hug you at the end of the day, is the kind of person who will be there for you when you need someone most.

Space

As much as you may want to spend every minute of every day by your man’s side, it’s important to give each other space. Space to be your own person, to do your own things, and to pursue your own goals.

Understanding that alone time is just as important as shared time is a key aspect to any relationship that’s fit to last. This means that you shouldn’t rely on your man to keep you informed of his every move or thought, but instead give him time to be by himself. It’s in these moments that he’ll not only feel centered and at ease, but it’s also when he’ll have the chance to realize how lucky he is to have you by his side. On the contrary, not giving him this very critical need can make him feel suffocated, could lead to resentment, or may even give him the urge to run.

Giving him space isn’t limited to the physical realm either, but respecting his privacy is also essential. Under no circumstances do you have the right to snoop through your partner’s personal belongings or messages, and if you truly love him, you shouldn’t feel the need to.

Instead of seeing time apart negatively, think of your relationship like a jigsaw puzzle. You’re both two pieces that exist alone, but when you come together form the perfect picture.

Respect

Without respect in your relationship, true love cannot exist. Unfortunately, what constitutes as respect isn’t always clear.

In broad terms, respect is a positive feeling or action shown towards someone, and holding that person in high regard. It’s about showing admiration, even if it isn’t necessary in a romantic sense.

When it comes to loving relationships, respect is the key to communicating with your partner and creating a dynamic where the two of you feel safe sharing your thoughts and feelings. Without this it’s easy for insecurities to sneak into the picture, or even secrecy. On that note, listening to your man and expressing support and interest in the things that are important to him will show him that you respect him.

Of course, no relationship is all sunshine and lollipops, and even the strongest couples have their share of tiffs. The key to a lasting relationship is learning how to disagree or argue respectfully, and sticking by one another even when times are tough or you aren’t seeing eye to eye. When you show your guy that you accept him for who he is and what he stands for, your relationship will be able to mount even the highest hurdles.

Satisfaction

For a relationship to be truly loving both partners must be genuinely happy in it. Relying on your man to be your sole source of happiness however, is a glaring mistake.

Instead find happiness in other areas of your life, such as your career, hobbies and social circle. Once you do, this positivity will transfer into your love life, and strengthen it.

If you’re feeling less than satisfied, ask yourself what you need and desire, and what changes you need to make to achieve happiness. For instance, maybe you’d like to dedicate more time to an activity you love, or perhaps you’d feel more content if your sex life was spicier. Whatever it is, identify it and make adjustments to your daily routine.

Since your man isn’t a mind reader you’ll  need to share your desires and tell him what you need from him. It can be intimidating to be so vulnerable, but once you open the gate to this type of sincere honesty, he will reciprocate and become more open about his needs, too.

When you find someone who trusts you and can be trusted, who touches you like you’re the only one they see, who gives you space to be you, who listens to you and respects all you say, and who goes out of their way to make sure your needs are met, in that person you’ll find a lasting, loving relationship.

About Amy North

Amy North is a women's relationship coach and best-selling author from Vancouver, Canada. Her high-acclaimed program "The Devotion System" has helped thousands of women from around the world find (and keep) the man of their dreams.

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