Connection is such an important aspect to everyday life. As important as it can be to your health, though, it can easily have a negative impact on your mental and emotional well-being. Sometimes, the signs are more obvious – physical and verbal abuse, for example. Other times, it may not be as obvious that you are in an unhealthy relationship. We put together a list of 5 signs that indicate you are in a healthy relationship.  

1. You can speak your mind freely. Speaking up, especially to someone that means a lot to you, can make you feel vulnerable. With that said, speaking up allows you both to work through things that could potentially become huge barriers in your relationship if they are not expressed. Not only will it help you to have a deeper understanding of how your actions (and inaction) impact your partner, but it will increase your level of trust with one another. In a healthy relationship, you feel comfortable enough to speak your mind openly without fear of rejection. 

2. You feel comfortable in your own skin. In a world inundated with the need for perfection, it is hard to show your true colors without fear of judgement or rejection. As difficult as it may seem sometimes, it is important to remember that we are all a work in progress and if you are with a person that genuinely cares about you, they will understand that. No one should feel like they need to look or act like a different version of themselves to earn affection. The true marker of a healthy relationship is the ability to be yourself – quirks and all. 

3. You support each other's goals and dreams (even if they are different). There is nothing wrong with having a passion for something different than your partner. If anything, it allows for time away from each other to indulge in activities that bring you joy. Additionally, love and connection are not always about how we as the individual feel, it is about how our partner feels. If their dream ignites passion within them, it should be met with support and encouragement. The same can be said about your dreams and your partner’s support. A healthy relationship has support coming from both sides. 

4. Difference in opinion does not create unhealthy tension. There are lots of polarizing topics being thrown around in the news and in our daily lives. Often, it seems like healthy disagreement is less and less common – especially in the wild, wild, west we know as social media. Having a difference of opinion paired with healthy disagreement or discussion can lead to improved active listening skills and empathy. As they say, it is possible to “agree to disagree” and in some cases, you may end up seeing a side to the discussion that you did not see before. The key is having a set of your own opinions and not just agreeing for the sake of avoiding a difficult conversation. That is an indicator you have a partner that values your opinion, similar or different from their own. 

5. Your relationship is built on a foundation of trust. Just like many other things, it takes time, effort, and consistency to earn trust. Unfortunately, as difficult as it can be to earn someone’s trust, it can be very easily broken. Trust is the backbone of a relationship and without it, it can create tension, fear, and doubt. It is important that from the very beginning, you allow your partner to earn your trust and keep it. If your partner gives you reasons to doubt their actions or words from the beginning, it will be hard to build a solid foundation of trust. A healthy relationship starts with two people that trust one another. 

As always, we want to reinforce that every relationship is unique. If you are at a point where you are unsure if your relationship is healthy, the best way to truly assess your situation is with the help of a professional like our counselors at Heyl Family Practice! Having an objective third party can provide helpful insight and tools to help guide you and your partner. 

If you would like to contact one of the professionals on the Genesis Counseling Associates team, please feel free to give them a call on the designated counseling line: 412-480-8792. 

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