13 Things My Marriage Needed More of
You don’t just want to get married, you want to stay married.
We can all agree on that, right?
That’s where these things my marriage needed more of come in.
Picture your marriage as a plant and these tips are the water! They will keep your marriage plant standing tall and strong.
I think we make the assumption that marriage and happiness go hand in hand. I know my brain lumps those two words together in the same basket.
Marriage and happiness. Of course! Hello, I have a piece of paper to prove it.
You know that minuscule print on your marriage certificate that said lifetime happiness guarantee. I haven’t actually seen it but I’m going to keep holding out hope it is there.
The reality is that one does not guarantee the other. Not at all.
Here’s a fun fact for ya!
I have watched The Princess Bride about 712 times in my 35 years. At least 500 of those before I was 16. Having someone love me the way Wesley loved Buttercup was my goal.
BTW: If you haven’t seen the movie but you like cheesy romantic comedies with a little action then check it out.
The point is I was all about that mushy gushy I can’t picture a minute of my life without you love.
Well, I just pictured life without my husband 12 minutes ago.
Was it because he got the wrong kind of tortilla chips from the store? Maybe. And also yes there is a wrong kind.
Did I also maybe overreact a smidge? Very possible.
Hey, your gal is serious about her chips!
But that is marriage. Forget all the hearts and kissy-face emojis.
It can feel more like a horse race.
Some days you are at the very end of that race on a horse named Fred. No cool name like Star Sprinkle Master Chief. Just Fred.
There are no actual secrets to building a killer marriage. No marriage checklist that lays out all the exact necessities that will carry you to the land of marital bliss.
I promise you there was no “marriage secrets” email that got sent out and yours got lost in the spam folder.
If there was one thing that comes close to qualifying as a secret, it would be finding and acknowledging your power.
Always being able to see a choice you can make. See an action you can take.
And then here comes the real deal secret. You have to do something!
Here Are 13 Things My Marriage Needed More of (and I bet yours does too)
Let me tell you one thing I know to be true. Ten seconds of goofiness can turn a day around.
Laughing together is such an easy and quick way to change your perspective. And change your mindset.
I rather laugh with you than hold a grudge because you wanted to play your video game instead of binge watch a show with me. This is an actual thought I had last night after a random dance party in the kitchen while I was making dinner.
Now, I know even a good belly laugh will not make everything rainbows and unicorns.
But I do believe that humor is a powerful tool that we can all use more often.
And one more thing. If you and your partner are able to laugh even in the challenging times, you are golden my friend!
Do you know what will always be in style? Good manners.
A classic little black dress is always a good look. Think of manners in the same way.
Don’t underestimate the importance of “please” and “thank you” on a daily basis.
An extra sprinkle of kindness never hurt nobody!
Basic manners will without a doubt help you build up your marriage.
Working on your relationship is crucial. That’s a given.
But leave some space to work on yourself.
Personal growth will only do good things for your relationship.
This article is a must-read when it comes to self-improvement!
I understand how you feel.
How many times have you said this to your partner? I have said this more times than I can count.
And I guarantee I did not understand how my husband felt each time. Sometimes, it just feels like the next thing to say. OK, I understand how you feel. Now, let’s move on.
With any situation, you will see things in a certain way. And your partner will see things a certain way. Both people create a story in their minds based on their perspective.
The bridge to true understanding is paved with questions. Asking questions is something we can all do.
Be sure you are asking for clarification rather than assuming you know what is going on in your partner’s side of the story. Questions will shorten the gap between the two stories.
Better understanding will take some effort but it is so very worth it.
5) Deep Breaths
I think deep breaths are a major component of marriage. This wife right here is speaking from years of experience.
Take more deep breaths. It forces you to pause.
And sometimes those few seconds spent breathing in and out can be just enough to stop you from saying or doing something you may regret.
6) Looking Inward
I think we all look at and notice things about other marriages. And I’m not saying this is a bad thing.
I mean, I could talk all day about how my grandparents created marriage perfection in my eyes.
But the issues start bubbling up when we see the positives in every other marriage and only see the negatives in ours.
It is one thing to be inspired by another relationship. It is another thing to get stuck in a comparison trap.
That comparison mindset is not what your marriage needs.
And focusing on everything your marriage lacks is NOT going to help it grow.
7) More Giving
This is simple and straight forward.
My marriage benefited from more giving.
But here is the real kicker.
Giving without the expectation of something in return.
Giving without there being a “catch”.
I caught myself doing nice things for my husband with a plan of what I would want in return. And I didn’t like that.
No need to put a tally mark on that imaginary “I did this” and “you did this” checklist.
Give and do things for your spouse because it will make them feel good or bring them happiness.
Sometimes I think we ask for honesty with just one small request.
We want honesty with the stipulation that things don’t get ugly. I think we want honesty but we also want to like what is being told to us. Or we at least don’t want the honesty to crush us.
Be honest but don’t hurt my feelings. I never came right out and said those words. But I have implied them many times.
Real honesty can be painful. But on the other side of that pain, there is a real opportunity for progress.
9) Undivided Attention
I’m listening to you but I am also answering a text, making dinner, and trying to catch the end of this show. But please continue. I can multitask.
I’m sure you can relate to that.
Life can sometimes feel like an endless to-do list.
But make sure you are carving out some time to give your partner attention without any distractions. Or at least as few distractions as possible.
Does it ever feel like you don’t fully enjoy the happiness because you are waiting for the hard times? And then the hard times makes an appearance and we are desperate to get away from it.
Especially when it has dug its claws in deep.
Don’t let the pain of the hard rob you of the joy of the good.
This is like always waiting for the other shoe to drop.
Find the joy in your life. The joy in your marriage. And then really sit and marinate in that joy.
More specifically holding yourself to a higher standard.
This is not to say you need to expect perfection from yourself.
This is about taking responsibility for the way you behave. Not making excuses for poor behaviors or poor choices.
I decided that I shouldn’t always let myself off the hook.
It can be really uncomfortable to face our shortcomings. I mean, I like to hide mine at the back of the closet with all those other random things I don’t feel like dealing with.
But facing and truly acknowledging them is a crucial first step for doing some improvements.
Say something good. Try to do this every day.
I’m not saying you need to fawn all over your spouse all day. That would get old real quick for both of you.
What I am talking about is being on the lookout for opportunities to dish out some sincere compliments.
Who doesn’t love a compliment? They are like little pick me ups.
Anniversaries are important.
My husband and I just celebrated our 10 year anniversary so I know this.
But hot dang, your marriage deserves more celebrations that just one day a year.
Plan a time to celebrate your marriage right now!
I’m not talking about anything big or glamorous or extravagant.
Mini celebrations will work just fine.
Not working on your marriage is like crossing all your fingers and toes and hoping things fall right into place. Things are supposed to fall into place, right?
We found the one. The puzzle is complete.
Marriage is a little more complex than that.
It’s like photos without all the pretty filters. It’s real and raw. Like the mess left after a good party.
These tips are a great way to sprinkle a little extra love on your marriage and keep that party going strong!
What do you think of these things my marriage needed more of? Drop a comment and let’s chat!
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