The Secret To A Successful Relationship

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Post written by Peter G. James Sinclair.

After being married for more than 29 years I thought I might take a moment to share with you my secret to a successful relationship.

Her name is Shelley.

I take no credit for the success of our relationship. However, it has been a joint effort, with my wife being a major contributor to the results.

The facts are that I am an extremely lucky man who married a woman who demonstrates some incredible qualities that are the necessary ingredients required for any successful relationship.

So here is a snapshot of what it takes to build a successful relationship.

There are just four qualities that I want to touch on.

There are probably more, but if you can master these four you will be on the path to success in all your relationships.

1. Trust

My wife trusts me. Wow!

I trust her.

She is my true friend, and has followed me into endeavors throughout the years where even angels would have feared to tread.

When our children were very young we packed up all our belongings and headed around the world for a period of six months, endured incredible challenges, nearly lost our one year old son, faced insurmountable odds, met some amazing people, saw some amazing sights and survived.

In a number of business ventures throughout the years we have failed and we have succeeded.

With every new venture though she trusted that I would find a way, and that to any problem faced we would find a solution.

She trusted my judgment. She trusted my tenacity. She also was smart enough to trust the one who had created both her and me.

Together, our Christian faith has sustained us as we trusted in someone greater than ourselves, and it is that trust that has permeated down and into our own relationship, one with each other.

2. Forgiveness

I have made some monumental stuff ups throughout our married life, and yet I have a partner who has continued to forgive me. In turn I have done the same with her, though her mistakes have never been, in my opinion, as astronomical as mine.

In the heat of the moment some harsh things have been said, but the healing Balm of Gilead has always been applied through the activation of forgiveness.

‘Sorry’ is a powerful word. So too are the words ‘I forgive you’.

If there is One greater than us who can forgive us, then it is only natural that we should forgive others.

3. Blindness

I have faults. My wife has faults. Do we concentrate on our human flaws, or do we choose to be blind to some of those things, and rather become attuned to those qualities of the other party that we admire.

Both of us have chosen to concentrate on the finer qualities that we portray rather than focusing on those things that annoy us.

Early on in our relationship I was always trying to change Shelley to become more like me, until I finally realised that what I was trying to do was absolutely and totally ridiculous.

How can I change an incredibly unique individual into a clone of myself? And who am I to think that the world would ever want two of me? One of me is more than enough to handle.

I couldn’t change my wife. The change that needed to occur was within me.

The incredible thing was that as soon as I took my eyes off wanting to change her, and focused on how I could improve myself, I began to change and miraculously she too started to change with no coercion from myself.

4. Commitment

When we decided to get married it was and is for life. There was never an escape or exit strategy. There was no back up plan if this one failed. There was no next-in-line partner waiting in the wings. The contract of marriage was something that we committed ourselves to on the very day that we exchanged our marriage vows.

Through the years I have seen business partnerships dissolved, friendships wax and wane, but our commitment to each other, through thick and thin, has continued to become stronger as iron does in the furnace.

Does this make us superhuman? Does this mean that we are invincible?

No. I remember a day when my young wife had her bags packed ready to leave. She had good reason to, but she didn’t. Why? Because she was committed.

The amazing thing is this, that many people have come in and out of our lives these past twenty-nine years, and yet our relationship is stronger than ever – and we are more in love with each other than the very first day we met.

I watch as many walk in and out of marriage, as if it is some disposable entity that one can simply discard. It saddens me, and the one’s who are most impacted are usually the children from that union.

Hey I’m not naïve. I agree that marriage is not easy. But is it something that we throw away so easily, like trash, when we face life’s challenges?

Please allow me to invite you to follow this piece of advice…

If you do find yourself in a situation where your relationship is going pear shaped, I want to encourage you to call out to the Creator and ask for a little bit of help from above.

Some Other Important Ingredients

And finally, here are some other important ingredients that are necessary in the recipe of a successful relationship.

My wife and I pray together. We dream together. We respect each other and our differences. We give each other room to grow. We listen. We talk. We date. We laugh. We plan. We look for ways to give, and not just to get. We share intimacy.

But please understand that this attention to detail, for the sustainment of a strong relationship, is required not only for the first twenty nine years, but will be the very same necessary ingredients needed for another successful twenty nine years.

We will have to keep at it. We have not arrived and never will until the day we die.

Successful relationships are forever.

So how can you begin to make your relationship stronger from this day forward?

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