Yesterday The Husband and I celebrated 16 years of marriage. I’m ecstatic! We have had our ups and downs. Trust me we have. However we have to remember that just like everything else marriage is a learning process and it is ever changing. Marriage isn’t for everyone. It’s a ton of work and you have to be ready for the ride. I think the main thing to remember is that no marriage is perfect. But it can still be great if you put the work in. Over the 16 years I’ve been married to my husband I’ve learned so much and I’m still learning. But I thought it would be great to share some of things that I have learned in that time.
1. Sometimes you will have to compromise. Yes you will have to not get your way. So you will have to learn to wait your turn or not get what you want or need sometimes.
2. Clear communication is important. Do not expect your spouse to be a mind reader.
3. Pick your battles. Everything is not worth an argument. Decide what is worth fighting for.
4. Take time for yourself. Yes you live your spouse but you do not have to be connected at the hip all the time. It’s okay to have a girls or guys night.
5. Acknowledge your spouse. When your spouse expresses a concern acknowledge them and try to come up with a solution.
6. It’s okay to give each other space. Trust me sometimes you’re going to need space to calm down and so will your spouse. Just do it! Don’t try to solve anything until you are both calm.
7. Keep your word. If you make a promise to your spouse keep it. You would expect the same.
8. Be honest. Yes be honest with how you feel and what you want. That’s one the most important ingredients to a great marriage.
9. Compliment your spouse. Remember to remind your spouse that you are still attracted to them and that you appreciate them.
10. Don’t play the blame game. Don’t go into any disagreement pointing fingers. If you are in the wrong in argument will end quicker if your just admit it and apologize.
11. Remember before you became parents you were a couple. Yes your kids are important but don’t forget to take time out for each other. Squeeze in a moment or a date night whenever you can.
12. Protect your marriage. Do not discuss every detail of your marriage with your friends, family and definitely not strangers. It’s okay to vent but don’t vent too much.
13. Always say I love you. Remind your spouse that they are loved. Everyone loves to hear I love you.
14. Remember to say thank you. Tell your spouse thank you for the things that they do.
15. Touch. Don’t forget to give your spouse a loving touch here and there. Sometimes life flies by and you can’t remember the last time you gave your spouse a hug or a kiss.
16. Don’t lose the spark. Your spouse may not be the same person you knew before. Some of the same things may spark your interest but it’s always fun to find something new.
I’m not a pro at any of these. In fact many of them I’m still working on. But I’m a work in progress. I have many more years to get great at it. Don’t be upset if things don’t go great all the time. Just remember to stay committed and that it takes two to make a marriage work. Try your best at all times. What is the one thing you think you need to work on in your relationship? What are you doing to fix it?