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Resolutions for a Healthy Relationship 

By: Arezoo Shahbazi Roa, Prevention & Community Education Director 

As the new year kicks off, many are taking this time to reflect on this past year and position themselves to allow for more good things to come into their life. Over the past few years, a hot topic of discussion has been “red flags” in relationships.  

Many often focus on the negative attributes of their partners and components of their relationship. These red flags can indicate an abusive relationship, leading to conversations about the cycle of violence. Despite that focus it is also vital that we spotlight the positives, or the green flags that contribute to a healthy, thriving relationship. 

Effective Communication 

No matter how long you’ve been with your partner, communication is key. To ensure you’re both metaphorically “on the same page,” encouraging effective communication is important. Speaking openly and honestly with your partner is an essential green flag.  It can often be as simple as both people sharing their vulnerable sides and expressing their true feelings, allowing for a deeper connection rooted in trust. 

Trust & Honesty 

Both trust and honesty are integral pieces to the foundation of a healthy relationship. Without the ability to be truthful and trust your partner, the relationship can be compromised. Establishing trust from the very beginning and nurturing it along the way will cultivate a healthy relationship. 

Equality & Respect 

A relationship takes two to blossom, and being able to both put in the effort and care is fundamental in a healthy relationship and a vibrant green flag. Failing to do so, whether by looking down on your partner – or even yourself, is akin to waving a red flag. Genuine partnerships are built on mutual respect and understanding, where each person feels seen, heard, and appreciated for their authentic selves.  

Establishing healthy boundaries 

Another way to ensure a relationship is healthy is through the establishment of healthy boundaries. Boundaries are self-defined lines that serve as a cornerstone of security within any relationship. A partner who respects recognized boundaries demonstrates a deeper understanding of how to connect and listen to their partner, which is a staple in any healthy relationship.  

Independence  

When you take care of yourself and have interests and hobbies separate from your partner, you’re more likely to feel self-fulfilled and complete. Dedicating time to friends and family in spaces that don’t necessarily include your partner is normal and should be seen as a green flag. A supportive partner understands the significance of maintaining independence, allowing room for personal pursuits. 

As we start this new year, let’s amplify the vibrant green flags that pave the way for healthy relationships. Stay true to yourself, trust in your journey with your partner, and embrace the authenticity and independence that define you. From all of us at Human Options, here’s to a 2024 filled with shared growth and healthy love. 

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