When the honeymoon stage is over, that’s when a marriage starts to face real-life challenges. And as the years go by, there will be many hurdles that couples will need to face.
The reality about marriage is: it’s not a bed of roses.
But that doesn’t mean that couples can’t have a happy marriage in spite of the challenges and hardships. In fact, couples have full control of the relationship. To make things work, couples need to have the right mindset and must both make an effort. Today we are spilling some of the secret ingredients for a happy marriage. Incorporate these into your daily life and you’ll find yourself in a happy and healthy marriage that can surely withstand anything life throws at you.
(1) Be grateful.
Appreciate each other every day and say it. Express it. Relationships flourish when couples feel appreciated and loved, when they feel their efforts and the things they do are meaningful for their partner. The best way to make sure your spouse feels appreciated is to express it continuously in any way you want. You can write notes, do small acts of service, or ever just say it. Say “thank you” for even the smallest things. Trust us, this goes a long way.
(2) Cultivate friendships outside your marriage.
Many people say they marry their best friends. Yes, that may be true. But don’t limit yourself to that friendship either. Keep nurturing friendships outside your relationship–may it be old friends, or new friends. You also need to have healthy external relationships because this gives you space to learn and grow from others. It also gives you a lot to talk about and share with your spouse, making things more fun and exciting.
(3) Be honest.
If there’s one thing that can make any marriage spiral downward it’s when you break your partner’s trust. Therefore, being honest–even when it hurts or even when it’s shameful–is important. Honesty can make or break a marriage, especially when the point of discussion has huge repercussions. Be honest.
(4) Be open.
A marriage that is founded on honesty also needs openness. More often than not, the truth hurts, so being open to it matters. Instead of focusing on the hurt, looking at how your spouse just wants to keep your relationship healthy will aide in bringing the honesty into perspective. This way, you can both work on whatever needs to be done, together.
(5) Watch your words.
When emotions are high, we easily release words that are unnecessarily painful for the other person. After saying all kinds of things, we realize we didn’t mean them. But the damage is done and there will be consequences. Watching your words, especially when your emotions are high will help minimize unnecessary hurt inflicted on your partner. It will be a lot easier to also talk and process things with less pain filling the room.
(6) Don’t sweat the small stuff.
Sometimes we tend to complain about small things. Or other times, we end up turning small things into bigger issues. There are some things that you can really just let go of. Before complaining or lashing out, step back and think: is it really worth fighting about? Perhaps it’s something that you can just set aside. There are many more important things than clothes left lying on the floor or dishes not done. Keeping your marriage happy is one of them.
(7) Savour your time together and have fun!
Savour your time together. Even if life gets busy, make time. Go on dates. Keep the intimacy. Healthy marriages include couples still finding time to really spend time together. It’s important to keep the connection and the fun. Laugh a lot. Do as many fun and funny things together too. You know what they say, laughter is the best medicine. For sure, that applies to marriages too.
(8) Ride the waves of life. Together.
Lastly, life has its ups and downs. There really will be bad days and good days. Ride the waves of life together. Go through all these life phases and help one another through them all. Don’t forget items number one to seven, too! Keep those ingredients in at all times and sail through many, many more happy years of marriage.