Many of us have that one couple on our friends list on social media. You know who I’m talking about: the ones that post tons of sickeningly sweet photos of themselves. They’re the ones who post those mind-numbing memes about true love and soul mates. They’re the ones who call each other by vomit-inducing, cutesy nicknames when replying to each other’s posts.
Some of us may feel this way because we’re envious of their relationship. We ask ourselves why we don’t have what they have. We may even wonder what their secret is to their happiness. But are they truly happy and deeply in love?
A recent Northwestern University study of over 100 couples revealed that couples who continually post about their relationships on social media are not as happy or content in their relationships as they portray. In fact, it’s actually a sign of their insecurities towards their relationship. This means that when a person is questioning the stability of their relationship, he or she tends to use Facebook as a means of validation.
When you think about it, it makes sense. Think of the comments your friends make whenever you post a photo of you and your beau. “You guys are so cute together!” “What an awesome couple!” How do you feel afterwards? You feel a little validated that yes, you two are meant for each other and everyone knows it.
There’s nothing wrong with posting the occasional cute pic of you two or mentioning it’s your wedding anniversary on social media. However just like many things in life, doing it excessively isn’t healthy. Truly happy couples don’t spend lots of time posting cutesy photos of themselves and dumb memes on social media. They’re too busy spending time with each other to bother with such nonsense. Happy couples don’t care what others think of their relationship, so their likes and comments don’t matter to them.
If you want a stronger relationship, no amount of likes and comments will help. Instead, you have to work at it with your partner. Here are some tips to a happy, healthy relationship.
Communication is the key. We’ve heard people complaining their significant other doesn’t understand them or know what they want. Happy couples talk to each other and aren’t afraid to share their thoughts and feelings on a topic.
Show your appreciation. A simple “thank you” can make a person’s day, even for the smallest tasks. I say thank you to my husband when he takes the heavy laundry basket upstairs for me. He says thank you to me for making dinner, even though I do so every night.
Schedule date nights/days. This is applicable to parents or workaholics. Find some time in your busy schedule to just relax with your partner, without the stresses of work and/or kids. This stress free time, does not only have to be a dinner, it can also be a workout you do with your partner to get your minds focused on something other then work or parenting. Try to make it a routine, say, once a week or even once a month.
Do your own thing. Although it’s important to spend time together with your partner, you also need time apart. Go to happy hour with your work friends. Catch up on some Netflix while your beau has a guys’ night out. Later on, you can talk to each other about it.
Listen to each other. When talking with our partners, we sometimes fall in the trap of trying to solve their problems or just waiting for our turn to talk. Instead, focus on what your partner is saying and actually listen. Sometimes, the best thing to do is to just allow them to talk.
With that being said, take some time and think about what is really important to you and your partner and do what makes you both happy!