Also, relational success is more likely when people have similar relationship values.
Life will spring things on you and test the strength of your relationship.
In those situations, compatible relationship values can give you the necessary endurance to navigate through the roadblocks as a united front.
What are the core values?
When we talk about core values, we are referring to the fundamental beliefs that build your identity.
They guide our behavior giving us a compass of what is adequate and desirable as opposed to wrong and unacceptable.
When we don’t act in accordance with our core beliefs, we feel we are betraying the essence of who we are.
When we step away from what we feel we should be doing, guilt and shame arise.
Core values guide our decisions all the way from how we want to spend free time to how we want to raise kids and live our life.
Therefore, having compatible relationship values is key to thriving and lasting relationships.
Importance of shared relationship values
The commonality of core values in a relationship makes up for more spontaneous decision making, more peaceful conflict resolution, and more efficient communication. One might say qualities essential to a relationship full of understanding, respect, and love.
Furthermore, relationship values guide us on the journey of achieving the life we want. Therefore, when partners’ values are compatible, the type and quality of life they strive to achieve is quite similar too.
Having the overall goal for life alike makes all the smaller decisions more effortless to make, and thus relationship satisfaction higher.
Studies confirm that partners with similar communication values are not only more attracted to each other, but they are also more satisfied with their relationship.
Having different values in a relationship can double the work. When we want different things in life, we are no longer just trying to resolve how we get there; we simultaneously have to negotiate with our partner about it.
Not to say that differences can’t be worked out; however, we probably agree that things run smoother when we are all in accord.
For example, imagine your partner values solitude, and you value companionship. The closer you try to move to them, the more they need to step away.
You might feel excluded and not intimate enough. No doubt that this can be worked out, but it will require more effort than it would to a couple who shares companionship as a value.
Furthermore, some values are hard to compromise on.
For example, if monogamy is something you value and they don’t, no matter other qualities you appreciate about them, it will be hard to get over that basic discrepancy.
Conflict will happen, and it is inevitable for all relationships. However, the more we agree about core relationship values, the easier we will resolve it.
For example, marriage core values, such as respect and forgiveness, when shared among partners, can be of immense help in conflict management. It can significantly reduce adverse communication.
The more we agree on foundational values in a relationship, the smoother our approach to solving life challenges becomes.
How to know what you and your partner’s relationship values are?
Sometimes we can get to a part of the answer by asking a simple question, “what do you value in a relationship” but creating a relationship core values list is not necessarily a straightforward job.
Often it is useful to take notice of the approaches you take when life challenges happen. Those speak about partners’ morals and values in a relationship.
Relationship core values are present in everyday decisions; however, they are the most evident when we have a big one to make.
11 relationship values for a lasting relationship
Research supports the claim that similarities attract and that we are seeking a partner that is a match to ourselves to some degree. So, what are some relationship values that make up for a prosperous and long-lasting relationship? We share a list of the most important values in a relationship that lead to a shared happy future.
Simply put, communication is the way we talk to each other. There is substantial evidence showing the importance of communication for relationship success.
Studies show that both men and women alike value affectively oriented skills as more important than instrumental skills.
It could be because how we approach the situation and treat our partner when things go south has an immense effect on how they feel about us, our relationship, and themselves.
Ultimately, we all desire not only to resolve the problem but to feel cared for while doing it. Therefore, research supports the claim that communication is one of the most critical factors that add to relationship longevity.
Commitment is one of the examples of relationship values that is a major contributor to a couple’s well-being.
Research indicates that both levels of commitment and perceived mutuality of commitment account for relationship prosperity.
Being dedicated to each other and putting effort into the relationship is one of the building blocks of good marital life.
Trust is often one of the first things that come to mind as important examples of core values in relationships.
Studies support what we intuitively know – that love and happiness are closely tied to feelings of faith, as one of the key components of trust.
Trust helps us rely more on our partners and therefore continue to invest in and build our relationship long-term.
Research supports this by showing that people who trusted their partners less noted higher variability in perceptions of relationship quality.
Recognizing our partner is looking out for us and our relationship, not only themselves, is forging a strong foundation for a lasting relationship.
4. Conflict management
No relationship is smooth sailing all the time. What makes a successful one is how you deal when you face a storm.
Do you turn on each other, or you continue to show love, support, and respect for one another?
It will come as no surprise that the study shows conflict management as significantly associated with partner attraction to one another and relationship satisfaction.
Fight the problem, not each other, and your relationship can outlive anything life throws at you.
A foundational value that is important for all close relationships, including romantic ones, is respect.
It is a no-brainer to know that we can’t feel valued, acknowledged and appreciated for who we are without respect. Love implies respect in romantic relationships, as research confirms.
Therefore, it is understandable why respect represents one of the essential relationship values.
Throughout a marriage, there are going to be smaller or more significant transgressions we need to deal with if the relationship is going to survive.
The tendency to forgive is related to healing and restoring relationships, according to research. Couples who share a higher tendency for absolution express more nonverbal cues (hugging. kissing) and explicit verbal forgiveness.
It stands to reason that their communication is more compassionate and caring. Therefore, their relationship satisfaction is higher, and relationship durability more likely.
Who wants to be in a long-term relationship where they can’t be themselves?
Some days you might want to stay in bed, watch Gossip Girl, not care about your looks and feel loved and accepted all the same.
Support and acceptance of the most intimate, authentic parts of ourselves are important for our well-being and positive relationship outcomes. We knew this, and data confirmed it.
Cherish the person who values honesty and authenticity the way you do, as this is one of the relationship values that affect the outcome and length of your marriage.
Being there for our partner, trying to see the world through their eyes, and showing understanding and compassion for their experiences goes a long way.
In fact, studies show it goes all the way and is closely associated with relationship satisfaction, especially for long-term couples.
Therefore, next time they are telling you something, be attentive, and don’t’ forget the importance of “I get it.”
9. Emotional support
Expression of care, compassion, love, and interest, which emotional support encompasses, is at the heart of loving, lasting relationships.
Helping our loved ones work through their upset during stressful times is the essence of emotional support.
This kind of help and encouragement is, based on many studies, the main ingredient of close relationships.
Furthermore, the research found that the scarcities in emotional support have been linked to lower relationship dissatisfaction and frequent reason for breakups.
Imagine one of your core values is saving money for a rainy day, while your partner is, by your standards, wasteful with money.
How will you two agree on financial decisions if your relationship value of managing finances is incompatible?
It is possible to negotiate on it, of course. However, it can lead to a lot of frustration and blaming each other.
Financial decisions have a significant impact on other areas of life, so it is understandable that, according to research, shared financial values are linked to improved relationship quality.
Religion has a strong place in many people’s lives and contributes to happy, enduring marriages.
Studies have backed this up by exploring the importance of religion for couples.
Not to say that religious differences might end a relationship, but similarities in religious views will make many life choices, such as how to raise kids and what values to impart, much more straightforward.
The compatibility of relationship values is vital for the success and endurance of the relationship.
However, every relationship is different, and some of the values we listed might not be as important to you as others.
Although sharing values can make your communication smoother, conflict resolution is more straightforward, thus increasing personal and relationship well-being.
Take notice of your relationship and ask yourself what values matter to you and your partner and how similar they are.
Don’t stress, even if different, there is room for negotiation and compromises, and therefore, the success of the relationship as such.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Milica Markovic has graduated from the Faculty of Philosophy with a degree in Clinical Psychology. She has 7 years (and counting) of Psychotherapy and Coaching education (both Transactional Analysis and Psychology of Personal Constructs) and experience in working with clients. Throughout her career, she has had remote clients around the world facing various personal, academic, or professional challenges.
She finds her primary duty is to establish a trusting environment in which clients can feel safe enough to discuss anything that might be troubling them and grow closer to their goals. She believes that whether you are experiencing a personal, relationship related, or professional challenge, the journey to surpassing it can be made easier with the right help by your side.
Milica is also a strong advocate of lifelong learning and continuous improvement.