Relationship Goals: Lessons from Happy Couples (2024)

#RelationshipGoals. You’ve probably seen this hashtag in celebrity and social media posts; and most likely, they’ve accompanied so-called “aspirational content.” That’s why you probably don’t believe in their relationship goals already. Because when trends appear attention-seeking and unrelatable, you don’t get their value.

But regardless of their bad reputation, relationship goals are a good thing. In fact, every couple should have at least a few common goals to help them connect on a deeper level. We’re here to get the real meaning of relationship goals back to you so you can improve your relationships and reach all the things you’ve dreamed of achieving as a couple.

Why a Healthy Relationship Needs Achieving Its Relationship Goals

When you and your partner accomplish relationship goals, you achieve things in a wonderful way that makes your life as a couple better. But it’s not only about a goal itself – it’s the journey you two take together and enjoy.

Here are the benefits of working as a team towards achieving your relationship goals:

  • Foster mutual respect
  • Improve your communication skills
  • Learn to become the other’s cheerleaders
  • Solidify your shared values
  • Create new memories
  • Become a unified front in the face of relationship obstacles

All these things will help keep your relationship bond strong, and your best friends can use this team approach to help keep your relationship alive in the worst of conflicts.

Related reading: 10 Basic Needs in a Relationship: Are You Getting Them Met?

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7 Steps to Set And Work Towards Goals

Good relationship goals are challenging. These tips will help you navigate creating and maintaining a strong relationship.

1. Make a List of Goals Separately and Work on Them Together

When you try to make the list of goals together, you may run the risk of butting heads. You or your partner may likely want to feel as if you are in control, even if your goals are relatively the same.

By taking the time to make a list of goals separately, you and your partner can easily make your voices heard without there being any sort of conflict between the two of you.

2. Keep Your Partner’s Love Language in Mind While Presenting Your Goals

Love language is important in all aspects of your relationship. When you wish to present certain goals to your partner, they will be more accepting of them. If you present them by considering their favored style of doing and accepting things, they are more likely to respond positively to them.

3. Agree on a Short List of Mutual Goals to Pursue Now

Whether you plan to pursue a long-term relationship or not, it’s always best to start with the short-term mutual goals for now.

Don’t worry about things like marriage or buying a house right now. They can wait. Instead, think of what you and your partner can achieve within the next year, month, week, or even day. By focusing on short-term goals or breaking down the long-term goals into short-term ones, you and your partner will feel less overwhelmed and more capable of completing those goals.

Related reading: Setting Healthy and Fair Expectations in a Relationship

4. Make Your Goals Fun

There’s something that is just so satisfying about reaching a goal. This is especially true if that goal has aspects you cannot control yourself.

When you reach a goal, you get to enjoy the process of watching yourself progress towards it and get excited satisfaction when you finally reach it. That’s a win-win fun combination that can encourage you both to move towards shared relationship goals.

5. Break Big or Long-Term Goals Down Into Smaller Objectives

One of the biggest issues about big or long-term goals is that they tend to be hard to achieve in their completion route:

  • You could say you want to lose 100 lbs in a year. But do you have any clue as to how you want to lose that weight?
  • You want to visit Europe in about two years with your partner. How are you going to get there? How are you going to save the money? Where exactly are you going to go? What languages should you try and learn?

By breaking these big goals into smaller objectives, they become more concrete as plans rather than simple wishes.

6. Don’t Set Vague Relationship Goals

“Let’s keep the spark alive,” they say. Or “we should keep our passion alive.” Or “we will always admire each other.”

Setting specific goals for your relationship lets you know exactly what they entail. This way, you are more likely to break away from those goals.

Specific goals should sound like “Have a date night every Friday” or “Go on vacation together once a year” instead.

Although these are not perfectly specific goals, they are much more concrete.

7. Be Careful While Navigating Your Relationship Goals

Setting relationship goals is only half of your journey, as you will need to maintain them. Here are best practices for your assistance:

  • De-escalate conflicts by reminding each other you are a team
  • Schedule regular check-ins to discuss progress
  • Give one another a safe space to be open and honest
  • Set goals aside for later if they become too contentious
  • Keep love language in mind when evaluating progress or discussing goals
  • Be realistic about what you can achieve soon
  • Set deadlines to give your relationship goals a sense of urgency

Related reading: How to Build Trust in a Relationship: 15 Tips

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Real Relationship Goals Examples to Tackle Together

Do you need some inspiration for real goals? Here are the major relationship goal categories for your assistance.

1. 6 Ways to Set Goals for Open and Honest Communication

Effective communication is foundational to achieving long-term relationship goals. That’s why we start here by providing some common relationship goals that can improve the communication style of your couple.

a) Learn about your partner’s preferred love languages

Remember that love language is one of the most important aspects of communication in a romantic relationship. Your partner and you will be more likely to be open to ideas if they are presented in the love language that you prefer.

Related reading: Words of Affirmation – How to Make Them Into Love Language?
Understanding Physical Touch Love Language
Quality Time – It’s a Love Language
The Love Language of Gift Giving
Putting Love into Action – It’s a Language

b) Schedule a weekly meeting to discuss relationship issues rather than waiting until things are contentious

The worst thing you can do is hope that a problem just fixes itself. After all, even if they have also noticed you have a problem, they may be waiting for you to fix it as well.

By taking the initiative to fix an issue as soon as you notice it, you will experience less stress in your relationship.

c) Give each other a meaningful compliment each day

It’s up to you to decide how to make your compliments meaningful. Just make sure your partner would love to hear what you say and that your compliment does not become a complete insult to them:

  • If your partner responds positively to being called a “Bad ass bitch,” call them that
  • If they respond negatively to being called “beautiful,” don’t call them that

d) Use “I” and “me” to speak about your feelings

By using these two simple pronouns, you take ownership of your own emotions, open up to your partner, and let them see how things affect you. “It’s annoying when you…” has a lot less impact than “I feel annoyed when you…”.

e) Consider online therapy – it can truly strengthen relationships

Sometimes, it’s good to have a neutral third party when it comes to discussing goals. This way, you’ll ensure all voices are heard, and the conversation heads in the right direction. Having a good mediator lets you strengthen the relationship and helps you listen better.

f) Sit down for dinner each night and have meaningful conversations

Sometimes, a relationship falls apart due to some huge dramatic event:

  • Your partner is cheating on you
  • Their mother does not approve of you being together
  • This is a long-distance relationship

But most of the time, relationships fall apart because you start spending less and less time together. However, this may not seem like much of a goal, especially at the beginning of a relationship. But it will be a good goal to achieve in the long term.

Related reading: Your Long-Distance Relationship – What Can Kill It?

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2. 6 Ways to Set Financial Goals

When you don’t have enough money to survive, things can get tense. Money problems contribute to more than a third of divorces. That’s why some of the most important relationship goals you can set involve getting and keeping your life and finances in order.

a) Track expenses together

“Beware of small expenses; a small leak will sink a great ship.”

Benjamin Franklin

The path to a solid financial future together begins with understanding where you are right now. Your first real relationship goal in the financial category should involve tracking expenses. Commit to saving receipts and keeping a spreadsheet of even the smallest amounts of money. Just remember that this only works well being together if honesty, transparency, and lack of judgment are in play.

b) Set 5 short-term money goals

Money-related goals often require sacrifice. They aren’t always the most fun to pursue. That’s why you should stay motivated by planning to get some small “wins” as early as you can.

Set relationship goals that you can conquer sooner. This way, you are rewarded quickly and get a bit of a boost. Here are a few you can suggest to your partner andadjust them based on your finances:

  1. Put 500 dollars into an emergency fund
  2. Start a weekend staycation fund with a $300 goal
  3. Take an online financial class together
  4. Cut spending in one area by 10% for a month
  5. Reduce gas expenses by planning your driving to use less fuel

c) Set 5 long-term money goals

These are the long-term relationship goals that you and your partner can commit to and eventually make big life changes. They take a lot of work – but in the long run, they are worth achieving true financial stability.

Here are some ultimate couple goals for long-term financial and relationship growth:

  1. Save a 20% down payment on a house
  2. Contribute 5K to a savings fund
  3. Improve your credit scores by 25%
  4. Pay a car loan early
  5. Start investing 10% of your shared income

d) Create a monthly budget that works

Once you know your financial situation and have some goals, creating a shared monthly budget is a good objective to apply to your everyday life. This relationship goal will help you and your partner stay on the right financial path.

Fortunately, technology is on your side. You can keep it simple and create a spreadsheet with your partner. Some apps allow you to set up a budget, track expenses, and even pay your bills.

Related reading: 7 Signs Marrying Him Would Be a Mistake

e) Open a mutual savings account and commit to contributing to it

Couples often argue about finances because they don’t feel equally contributing to expenses and savings goals. Also, lack of savings can take a toll on your mental health. If you or your partner feels the financial pinch, even out the burden with a shared savings account.

f) Set and follow a realistic debt reduction plan

Improve your relationship and get out of debt by setting and following a plan to get out of the red. You will both be happy that you put yourselves in a better position to pursue your own goals and your couple’s goals, too!

3. How to Set Relationship Goals for Your Sex Life

Call them intimacy goals or a sex bucket list, but most relationships thrive when sex is fun and frequent. Grow closer to your partner with these sex goals:

  • Experiment and learn new skills in the bedroom together
  • Have sex more often each week
  • Set up a session with a sex therapist
  • Talk about sex while practicing active listening

This is another area where respect, lack of judgment, and consent are very important factors. You and your partner will have a better relationship if you can express your desires freely.

Related reading: How to Be a Better Lover – Inside and Out

4. Tips to Set Healthy Relationship Goals to Support One Another

Your lives together will be improved if both of you prioritize personal growth. To do that, you need to respect and honor the other partner as they pursue their dreams.

Part of that is being a cheerleader, but there’s much more to it. You need to actively provide support as they pursue things they want to accomplish. They should be willing to go the extra mile for you as well. Share your personal goals for the next six months, year, and five years.

Yes, you may already know each other’s feelings and individual goals. Still, writing them out is important. You will both feel a greater sense of obligation to stick with your goals and help the other reach them in the long haul. One of the biggest forms of unconditional love is to give practical support to your partner.

Here are some things you can both do to be supportive in your partner’s life:

  • Commit financial resources to pursue your and their personal and professional development
  • Give a partner returning to school a private place to study
  • Use one another’s skills to build a business or foster a hobby
  • Forego gifts for cash and other items to work towards your goals
  • Commit to check-in with one another as you work towards a better future

Related reading: Setting Healthy and Fair Expectations in a Relationship

5. Goals to Build a Healthy Strong Relationship

Healthy couples are happy couples. The better you feel, the more energy you will have to spend quality time together to strengthen your relationship.

Here are some life goals to tackle with your partner for a healthier future and more quality time together:

  • Walk together every evening
  • Become one another’s gym partner

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6. Fun Goals That Make Good Relationships

Your relationship goals don’t always have to be serious or deep. You can set goals to have fun with your partner. Shouldn’t relationships be enjoyable?

Here are some real relationship goals that are all about you and your one partner simply having a blast together:

  • Try a new restaurant or cook a new dish together each week
  • Take turns planning date nights involving something neither of you has ever done before
  • Shop for and buy a new board game or video game to try each month
  • Save money to spend a weekend nerding out together at comic-con
  • Join an adult recreational sports league together
  • Learn a new art or craft style

7. How to Set Goals for an Even Workload

In the past, one person worked 40 hours a week, and the other person stayed at home. However, now we live in a time when everyone needs to work outside the home. That could still lead to one person feeling as if they do a lot more around the house than another person might.

Here are a few realistic goals you and your partner can set for maintenance:

  • Make a job chart every week and divide the tasks evenly
  • Work together to have all of the dishes washed before you go to bed
  • All spills should be cleaned up within 5 minutes of making them
  • One person can wash the laundry, the other can fold and put it away
  • Tasks should be switched off every 2 weeks

Make Goals to Build Bonds

When you work towards a goal with your partner, you accomplish two things. You both work with one another to fix issues that may be making your relationship a struggle. More importantly, you experience amazing victories together. Shouldn’t all the relationships work like that? If you agree, start setting your own relationship goals and have fun moving in the same direction together!

Cherie Hamilton

I’ve always been inspired by women who are outgoing, very sure of themselves, and not afraid to be who they were, including their sex lives. Under their tutelage, I gradually shed my old self, hung out and socialized with them, and, over time, became the empowered, self-confident, and sexual woman I am today. Happy to share my insights with other women today!

Relationship Goals: Lessons from Happy Couples (2024)
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