Relationships are usually fun at their beginning, at least at the point we decide its worth it to invest ourselves in getting to know a person and giving them a chance to know us. Something catches our interest, draws us to them, or we may be just lonely and seeking someone.
At first we have our best selves on display, careful to not let any of our flaws or faults slip out or be observed. As we become comfortable with them these aspects of us begin to leak out, slowly at first, and then at some point the dam bursts. Sometimes small resentments start to build which may fester and grow into significant dislikes. We can begin to see our person as annoying or not worth dealing with their static and negativity. We may complain about these things to others and live with unhappiness or even just end the relationship.
How do couples stay happy together and keep the flame burning? They choose that the things they like about their person outweigh their flaws and faults.
The match that struck the fire is remembered and they focus on what they enjoy and admire about them, looking past what they may not and giving head and heart space to those things, letting the dampening effects of annoyances and grievances remain at arm’s length where they cannot smother the flame.
These same principles apply to all types of relationships, including friends, coworkers, and acquaintances. Seeing the best in others and taking them in through that lense allows us to have sustainable and happy relationships.