How Can Setting Couples’ Goals Support Your Relationship?

Updated March 26, 2024by Regain Editorial Team

Setting goals can be a helpful process for people who are looking to make advancements in their lives. This method of accountability can also include couples who are in a healthy, forward-moving relationship that they wish to keep and work on together in the future. 

If you’re hesitant to set goals with your significant other or fail to see the point, understanding exactly why dating goal setting is important might help provide clarity and direction that could enhance your quality of life together.

Below, we’re exploring the benefits you can enjoy from setting couple goals, as well as what goals you may consider setting in a relationship. We’ll also be digging into how to set goals, connecting you to different strategies to help you get the most out of your experience. 

Why are couple goals healthy?

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Setting goals with your significant other can be a  way to ensure that you are on the same page. It can also be a strategy to plan the future and plan how you will both get there together. 

Goals can be healthy to use within a relationship, as it generally allows both partners to communicate their needs and preferences. It also means that both individuals intend to improve the relationship, potentially making the relationship healthier. 

What is a healthy partnership?

Defining a healthy relationship often comes down to each person’s individual experience and perception. However, many agree on certain characteristics that can be present in a relationship for it to be considered healthy. These can include: 

  • Communication 
  • Mutual respect
  • Trust
  • Honesty 
  • Mutual care and support

What goals are best in a healthy partnership?


Many agree that the best goals to set in a healthy partnership are ones that aim to improve the relationship for all parties involved. Goals relating to communication, individuality within the relationship, trust and honesty are often the ones that can make a relationship healthier. There are far more examples of goals for a healthy partnership as well, such as financial and emotional goals.

Setting goals can be a helpful first step. However, all members of a relationship may experience a higher degree of relational satisfaction when they begin to work on them together. A strong first step could be writing your goals down somewhere where you will consistently see them — keeping them front of mind. You may also consider discussing dates, milestones and progress with your partner to facilitate open communication and growth as you move forward together. 

Making SMART goals

Developing smart goals is not just smart in the traditional sense. The acronym stands for certain elements that well-constructed goals often have, often playing a role in their success. 

We’ve summarized the elements of a SMART goal below. Generally, a SMART goal is:


Being specific in your couple’s goals may help you to determine exactly what it is that you and your partner want to accomplish. Rather than broad, unclear goals, you can choose to make it so specific that you and your partner can then easily determine the necessary steps to achieve them. If your goal can be broken down into a narrower goal, for example, it might be too broad.


To determine if a goal is measurable, you may consider asking yourself a single question: “What tells you and your significant other that your goal has been accomplished?” Making a goal quantifiable can make it easier to track progress and acknowledge it, which can give you both motivation to continue in your process. 


Setting impossible goals can be detrimental to your relationship and your mental health, as you may experience frustration if you fail to accomplish them. That’s why many choose to set attainable and more realistic goals. Doing so potentially increases your chances for success while mitigating your risk for failure and can be a motivational tool — giving you the feeling that what you want is just within reach. 


As you plan your goal, you might consider asking yourself: “Is the goal relevant to your relationship?” Knowing why you are setting this goal and what it will do for your relationship can tell you and your significant other if it is truly relevant and may affect your motivation positively going forward. 


Although setting goals without an end date gives you plenty of time to achieve them, it may not be as motivating to you or your partner — potentially making it more difficult to accomplish the goals you’ve set. You may consider setting a date or time frame that tells you and the other person in the relationship when to check in on your goal’s progress.

How can online therapy help those who want to support their relationship? 

If you’re looking for new ways to support your relationship, you may consider online therapy. Relationships can be complex, and the idea of discussing the most intimate parts of your life in front of someone new can feel overwhelming. Online therapy can be a more accessible and desirable option for some, allowing you to receive discrete support through any smart device.

Is online therapy an effective way to support relationships? 

Our mental health and wellness can have an impact on the quality of our relationships. By addressing potential underlying mental health conditions (such as depression and anxiety disorders), we may have a higher potential for relationships success at any given time. With this in mind, many wonder if seeking online therapy truly is worth it, and if it offers comparable benefits to in-person therapy.

Recent analysis from the National Council on Aging has found that online therapy is just as effective as in-person therapeutic methods. Their Frontiers in Psychiatry study noted that patients self-reported better mental health outcomes when receiving online therapeutic care — and 96% of respondents to the American Psychological Association’s Telehealth Practitioner Survey found that treatment was an effective method through virtual routes. 

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Setting goals with the other half of your relationship can support higher-quality communication and connection. This can positively impact on the relationship, offering a sense of security and support. Making goals in alignment with the SMART method can increase one’s chances of success and consistency as they work to meet the goals they have set. Online therapy can also be a supportive resource to reference as you work to create and meet goals set in a given relationship.

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