OPEN UP: What It REALLY Takes To Have A Healthy Relationship

Thank you thank you thank you to whoever requested this post. Because you requested this post, a silent dream of mine came true: Marco asked me to coffee to work on a blog post together. WHAT.

I told him I needed to get his perspective and he said “How about we go to Palermo and work on this together.” Hallelujah! Talk about something that brought me joy. This was such a fun/special thing to do together.

Marco & Paige Schmidt

(Photos by Asia Croson)

I wrote this post in three parts. My perspective, from me. Marco’s perspective, all written from him (I had to get a few words in and wrote “- P” next to those, ha!). And to end, I’m including everything that YOU guys shared on Instagram @healthyhitsthespot (I love the engagement from you all!).

Now, before you begin, please know that Marco and I are nooooot perfect, we don’t know BETTER than you, and we don’t consider ourselves experts at this whole relationship thing. We’re continually learning, we’re imperfect, and we love each other.

That’s it.

So, this post is purely Hey, you guys asked! So, here you go! Here are some things that we’ve found to be important in our relationship – things that help us each feel safe, loved, and happy as a team.

My Perspective

Support/Encourage One-Another’s Desires

I’ve said before that I think my love language might be “support.” I know, that’s not really a love language from the book, but when I express something I want to do, something I want to invest in, or an idea that I have and Marco is supportive, that is when I feel the most loved.

A relationship is two people coming together, and a marriage is two people coming together for life. Two people will each their own likes, desires, wants, and dreams. Help one another get what you want out of life, not keep each other from having/doing what you each want.

Listen

Listen, listen, listen. Never stop listening. Being heard is one of the best feelings in the world. Create safe spaces in your relationship to communicate, and listen without judgement.

Understand (Even If You Don’t Agree)

Even when you don’t agree with something your signif-other is sharing, do your best to understand where they’re coming from. When we don’t understand one another is when communication goes up-the-wazzo and get’s a little nuts-o.

When understanding/listening goes out the window, this when things like: raised voices, exaggerated stories, and acting out begins to happen – people just want to be heard. UN. DER. STAND. one another.

Play

Keep fun in the relationship. I heard on the radio today “families that play together, stay together.” Gosh, how true, right? Engage with each other. Give each other attention, laugh, cuddle, go on trips, go to dinner, ride bikes, be silly… Let go of all the seriousness that comes with day to day life.

Get Spiritual

Whatever this looks like for you, share some kind of spirituality. Marco and I can always come back to trusting God, praying for His will, and trusting that He’s got our best interests at heart. This takes pressure off of us to do everything perfectly. It’s gives us the Grace to forgive, and hearts to love each other.

Marco’s Perspective

Have Fun

Have a lot of fun together, because life is serious enough as it is. Get to know what your partner likes to do, and let your partner know what you like to do, and go for it. Plan a trip, go to the beach/pool, get outside, drink Coors Light (Marco refused to let me put “beer” here, haha! – P).

Trust

It’s good to trust each other (relationally, financially, etc). When you trust one another it’s easier to let go of stress/worry. You can encourage each other to spend time away with friends, go on solo-trips, and send your wife to Target without worrying (Haha! you’re welcome, Marco  – P).

Freedom

To me, freedom means that you each get to do what you want. If you want to go out and do something, do it. If I want to go and do something, I’ll do it. This all goes back to trust, trust each other enough to make decisions that are best for the team. (I love this! – P)

Financial Understanding

Have common financial goals, talk to each other about money, communicate expectations/wants/needs, and get on the same page. What we’ve found to work: talk about big purchases, and agree on an amount that you each get every month for “fun money” (fun money = no questions asked, spend what you want).

Support

Support, to me, means to consider the other person in what you do. Have common goals, and again, make decisions for the team. The team = the two of you. Support also looks like being able to trust that you have someone else looking out for you when you need it.

Sex

Isn’t that one self explanatory? (Marco’s exact words, so, there ya go! – P)

Your Perspective

I asked you guys on Instagram, and here’s what you said…

  • @asiacrosonphotography Trust, effort to make each other’s lives better, and being really great at creative solutions, not compromises 🙂
  • @heather__kulp Great communication and 100% trust!
  • @thaozer Someone once told me after my wedding – listen to your partner, and listen hard. never stop listening. we spend so much time tuning people and noise out of our daily lives, but we have to work NOT to do that with our significant others. the moment you begin to take your partner’s words/thoughts/emotions for granted is the moment when you start to forget what makes your relationship so special and meaningful.
  • @emilydavis67 The same religious beliefs.
  • @jesslynnknox Respect and trust!
  • @nurseatnurse Acceptance. Forgiveness. But acceptance is number one.
  • @instasoozi Communication. Especially in a long-distance relationship
  • @ambergracebda Friendship, communication and trust.
  • @brittnayyyyyyyyyyyyyy 100% communication. It was VERY hard for me to learn at first, and very frustrating for him, but it’s made us better as a couple and awesome partners to each other.
  • @viva_vanessa_ Friendship, trust and lots of communication. I seriously tell Jordan everything lol
  • @onebigbiteoflife Communication! Both good and bad things. I’m so used to being on my own, so it’s tough sometimes! And a personal preference for me is laughter! If I can’t laugh with you, we’ve got a bigger problem
  • @marathongurl Humor. You can’t take yourself or your spouse so serious! Yes there are times seriousness is important but having fun and laughing together is important. A baseline friendship is so important. My husband is my best friend – the person I want to share every thing with – good or bad. Good sex too ☺️ that doesn’t hurt at all.
  • @missaliii Independence. It’s been so important in my relationship. Alex and I have always given one another the trust and support it takes to work on ourselves. Being the best you can be as an individual only makes your relationship stronger. Along with communication, honesty, patience and friendship. ❤️❤️❤️
  • @thehappyrunnerdiaries #faith #trust #kisses
  • @kelseyreece Grace- the presence of love in the absence of deservedness
  • @amyyoungco Loads of transparency and trust! Commitment to communication and understanding. Appreciation of differences. Looking for (and verbalizing) what’s right before pointing out what’s wrong. And love, duh. 😁💕

And next week, I’m going to actually be meeting with some of my aunts and uncles who have been married/in a relationship for a while to get their answers. Would you guys like/appreciate this?

Now, I want to hear from more of you! What do you think? Which of these do you most relate to? What are the things that you find it takes to have a healthy relationship? 

Love, Paige
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