Marriage is the union of two individuals each possessing a different genetic makeup, different life experiences, temperament and personality. This uniquely human partnership connects two partners in a contract that is expected to last “…’till death do us part.” Here are ten tips for a successful marriage.
Reinhold Niebhur wrote, “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can and wisdom to know the difference.” The sentiment of this prayer unlocks one secret to a happy marriage: Calmly come to terms that you will never change your spouse. Love him as he is. Dare to change yourself because you cannot change anyone but yourself. Have the wisdom to know this.
Communication is a keystone in the foundation of a successful marriage. Verbally express how you are feeling because your spouse cannot read your mind. Listen and observe your spouse. Over time, couples learn a spouse's body language and sense changes in mood. What is not said is as important as what is said.
Keep Love Alive
Make a list of all the things you love about your spouse. When you say, “I love you” tell him why you love him. Try doing this at least once a week. Commit the list to memory or keep it in your wallet or other accessible place. When you get angry with each other, retrieve the list and remember what you love most about him.
Laugh together not at each other. Do not let the strain of daily life steal your ability to see and share humor. Demeaning or insulting a spouse under the guise of benign teasing quickly ceases to be funny.
We are all human and humans make mistakes, spouses included. In every marriage there will be stressful times. We have the option to forgive a spouse or not. Strive to reach a resolution, swallow your pride, forgive, and see the new day as a fresh beginning.
Choose Your Battles Wisely
Life is short and each day is precious. Let go of insignificant issues. Work through challenges, and there will be many, as a team. Resolve arguments with constructive communication and never go to bed angry.