A freelance book reviewer who likes to highlight the relationship issues via article writing.
Relationships in the Modern Era
The relationships dilemma is increasing in the present era to an extreme. People are confused and puzzled about learning the secret of a successful relationship. Nobody claims a 100% successful relationship formula. This issue has increased to such a limit that everybody is living in chaos in building and maintaining a strong relationship these days. Some say there isn't any such thing as a successful relationship, you just simply bear with each other. There is another group that supports the notion that a successful relationship does exist. You need to put in a lot of effort to build it.
The Two Notions about the Relationships
Let’s take these two notions into account to find out our answer to a million-dollar question; how to build a strong relationship with your partner? The first group who believes in tolerating their partner means to say that no matter what your partner does and say you just tolerate it. Alright if considered then it creates more complexity to the existing relationship. The other partner is going to take his/her better half as for granted. They are going to live life as mere puppets where the one controls the other. There seems to be no mutual understanding of any sort among them. They are either going to fall apart or live in as aloof at sooner or later stage of their relationships. So, I personally disagree with this notion. As I have already observed and witnessed such aloof couples in my life who have no idea about what the real kind of relationship can do to make their life beautiful. They lack that x- factor spice in the life that brings the real joy and charm into a successful relationship. Their children lack the personality of their own just because of the same reason of having a dominant parent who is also controlling children's life as the way the better half's life is being controlled.
“The only thing that a child needs, is one grownup who believes in them.”
Do "Successful Relationships" really Exist?
This takes me to the group number two notion i-e a successful relationship demands an effort to make it work and last forever. This relationship is mostly based on the strong foundation of love and mutual cooperation unlike the dominant group of believers. Here, the couple has decided certain norms of their own in the relationship right from the beginning of it and stick to those norms or either mould them when and if required. Such kind of couples really make through their thick and thin in life. The factor of rigidity is not supported by either of the partners in this group of a successful relationship. They simplify the concept of relationship by following the basic four foundations of love.
“Relationships are the combination of the uniqueness, values, wishes, desires and dreams, are expressed together in the story that paves your joint life.”
Four Foundations of Love
This has led me to the book I have recently read upon building, improving and maintaining a successful relationship by Mor M Cohen “The Four Foundations of Love”. This book is based on a fascinating study, in which 83 successful couples were interviewed for one purpose: to understand what makes them keep loving their partner years after they have met, or loved them even more. It turns out that all these couples share 4 crucial foundations. Cohen’s book comprises of case study narratives from the real-life couples in crisis or even after they had split and how the implementation of one of her four foundations improved and rectified their relationship status. This seems to be the secret formula of winning and succeeding in the relationships for all. Following are Cohen’s four foundations to develop and improve the relationships.
“At this stage, the couple focuses on searching for what they have in common and it seems that what they have in common outweighs what they do not.”
The very first foundation of love Cohen highlights and pin points to every couple is to locate and elaborate that element of rareness in their better half that has set the person apart to be considered as their soul mate. This term is really interesting as it suggests the one rare quality of an individual that sets him/her apart from the rest of the human beings. The next question arises in the mind if such a quality really persists in an individual? The answer is “yes" provided by almost all married couples when inquired. Their partner seemed different to them when they first met them. They will name that rare quality of their partner in detail that has set them apart from the rest of their suitors. Sometime it was not rare or special at all but the important thing is that the couple ensured it was the rarest thing that had happened to them. I believe it! And so, does Cohen. She has presented interesting narratives from her real-life cases facing issues. Cohen calls this to be the decisive moment for the couple to make them realize that this is our destined partner.
“I knew you are my soulmate the moment I realized the entire universe conspired to bring us together.”
2) Unwritten Agreement
This is another important foundation Cohen talked about in her book. Here, comes the role and importance of our language and body gestures in a relationship. The essence of words in any relationship can either make or break it for sure. As a linguist I totally agree to this factor. Our words matter a lot in building a relationship. I have seen successful couples always uttering kind words to one another in a lively chit chat that makes a daily conversation between the couple really beautiful. This grows mutual respect among the couples. Cohen has beautifully categorized such couples as “equal” and “gesture” in her book. This foundation surely makes a strong impact upon the quality of a successful relationship.
“If you want to upgrade your relationship, you need to take your unwritten agreement to the next level and instil a sense of a mutual relationship.”
3) Sacred Bond
This is the stage in a committed or a dating couple that binds the relationship into a sacred bond of love for the rest of their lives. According to Cohen this bond does not mean a marriage contract but a sacred element and a couple's divine connection in their relationship. This stage plays a decisive role in a couple's life to either term it as eternal and ever lasting. As Cohen wrote:
“This stage does not require a wedding or any other religious ceremony, it is simply the sanctifying of the relationship using language.”
In this chapter again Cohen quotes the real-life couples' narratives who were in crisis. They implemented one of the foundations and succeeded to overcome their relationship dilemma and in fact improved it.
4) Future Dimension
This is the fourth and the final foundation of love in Cohen's book. This is the stage that strengthens any relationship or If you don’t have the future dimension your relationship has an expiration date.
“When there is not a joined future path, all possibilities are open to us; even breaking up”
Here, the couple decides and makes the promise of a mutual future. Yes! The real marriage takes place at this stage of the love and a relationship. I loved it when Cohen talked about it in these words to make the readers realize the importance of the foundation of “Future Dimension:”
“Future dimension occurs when your two worlds blend into one vision.”
This book has really some pure gem piece of an advice upon the relationship by the real-life expert in this field. The group favours the dominance of a single partner and encourages to for bearing with the partners must read this book to have a changed perspective upon the success of the relationships.
“The relationship is always moving forward, especially in the least and unexpected moments.”
I am not a relationship expert but I thoroughly believe that a real successful relationship is like a flowing river. It's smooth and devoid of unnecessary forbearances. The partners are not a burden on each other instead the carrier of each other’s burden. They share instead of steer each other to their own directions. I would like to end this notion at Cohen's golden words:
“A relationship shouldn't feel like hard work or a tedious task in which you need to suffer the person you are living with.”
The best thing Cohen’s book highlights via her case study of couples in crisis is that any troubled relationship can be worked out at the end by implementing and following the modelled 4 Foundations of love in the real-life.
The Book's Link
My Other Article about the Relationships
- Nomad Lovers and Modern Relationships
Can lovers be "Nomads?" Can you categorize your lover? Do you know who "Nomad Lovers" are? Read and find out for yourself in my article!
This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.
© 2020 Tajwer Shakir
Tajwer Shakir (author) on November 15, 2020:
@dr Billy thank you!
Dr Billy Kidd from Sydney, Australia on November 15, 2020:
You got it!
Tajwer Shakir (author) on November 15, 2020:
@Ambreen thanks a lot for the appreciation! Made my day! :)
Ambreen Bahzad on November 15, 2020:
Very informative article to understand modern relationship, keep it up.