Relationships are any connections you have with others that affect your life and well-being. These include friendships, romantic relationships, family and coworkers. The key to a healthy relationship is communication and support. Your relationships can help you feel supported, loved and accepted, which can have positive effects on your mental and physical health.
In a relationship, you share feelings, concerns and needs with the other person. You also care for and respect each other, and you enjoy intimate activities together. It is important to communicate clearly, especially when there are misunderstandings. You can do this by listening to what the other person says and making a clear effort to understand them. You may also want to double check that you have understood them correctly.
A healthy relationship should not cause you to become angry or upset easily, but if it does, you must be able to talk about these issues calmly and respectfully. You should be able to solve problems and set boundaries. You should also be able to discuss difficult topics, such as sex, without fear of being humiliated or degraded.
While more research is needed to explain exactly how relationships influence health, the connections are fairly clear. It’s essential to have a strong support system to manage stress and illness, so it’s crucial to build healthy relationships throughout your life. The authors of the special issue on Relationships agree that this is an area that deserves more attention from researchers and health policymakers alike.