Marriage is a wonderful blessing. Created by God, marriage is filled with excitement, challenges, and promise.
Being married takes work. Plain and simple. You must consistently put in 100%. It’s not a 50/50 thing. Each person has to make an equal effort to maintain a happy and healthy marriage.
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I want to encourage you and help you get back to those bright and beautiful days you experienced in the beginning of your relationship and help make your marriage strong to battle any storm.
A happy and healthy marriage takes work.
My husband and I have been married for 19 years, together for close to 21 years. While I am not a marriage expert by an education standard, I am an expert in the realities of life and marriage.
So what makes a strong marriage?
There are 5 elements that I’ve discovered make a huge difference in marriage.
Each of these things is essential to a happy marriage. Let’s dive a little deeper into each of these and learn how to make the most of our days with our spouse. And bring back some of that passion.
This may seem obvious. Caring for your spouse should come naturally to you. But I’ll be the first to tell you that, it’s also one that is easy to lack on.
Our day to day tasks, work, school, kids, friends, and family all pull us into different directions which makes it sometimes hard to just care for our spouse.
It’s not enough to only take care of them when they are feeling ill. It’s important to ask how their day was. It’s important to care enough to let them have time by themselves as well.
This one is a big one for me. My husband usually works Monday through Friday so when the weekend comes, I, of course, want him to be here with us, doing family things. What I need to remember is that he still needs time to decompress and do the fun things he enjoys, such as working on cars with his friends.
Not getting upset when your spouse wants to do something is simply a way to show that you care. Yes, everything is within reason. If it’s every weekend then that’s not ok either (more on that to come later.)
Give your spouse a foot massage or maybe a foot soak with Epsom salts and essential oils. Show them know how are special to you. This act of servanthood is a beautiful way to share the love of Jesus with them.
When you got married, you made a commitment to that person to love and cherish them. That doesn’t stop just because the honeymoon’s over or you’ve hit some hard times.
Pulling away from your spouse is detrimental to a healthy relationship. You took the vows, so now you need to act on it. Whether it’s electronics, books, work, or even another person, your first commitment lies with your spouse. After the Lord of course.:)
I know that when we feel that our needs are not being met, we slip in our commitment to our spouse. We forget to do those little things. We forget to make them a priority. We allow other things to get in the way. It may be time to look at the extras in your life and see if there is something that can be eliminated.
The answer is almost always yes.
Websters Online Dictionary describes considerate as being “thoughtful of the rights and feelings of others.” Is this something that you practice?
Are you thoughtful of your spouse? Do you consider their feelings in making decisions?
If the answer is no, it might be time to reevaluate. Our world today is self-centered with the focus on “Me.” Being considerate of your spouse shows them you care, that what they have to say and do is important and sets an example for them and your children.
Let me ask you this…when you get into a fight/argument with your spouse, are you more interested in getting out what you need to say?
Let your partner speak. Being considerate of how they are feeling is huge. We are all human with emotions and feelings, each made with purpose and with value. Your spouse is just as important as you are.
Oh boy, this is a biggie. It can be so hard to compromise when we are very passionate about something. Marriage without compromise is like a train with no track. You don’t get anywhere and you huff and puff for no reason.
Learning to compromise brings a sense of security into a marriage that is steady and harmonizing. We cannot always get what we want. Our spouse has valid ideas just as we do. Giving up something of value to you lets your spouse know that they are a priority to you.
Being rigid and hard only creates tension in a marriage. It doesn’t allow the two minds that God has brought together to be fruitful in their journey together. Once you learn to compromise, you learn to accept. Once you learn to accept, you learn to let go.
Compromising for one another opens doors to new heights in your relationship. Being able to support one another is priceless and has to be practiced often.
I saved the best for last. This is my favorite one. I cannot tell you how long it took us to get to the point of actually communicating instead of holding grudges. Literally years. Once we decided to let go and talk about how we were feeling, our marriage changed dramatically.
I am the type of person who gets upset and closes off. I use to shut down and not talk to my husband for days. Now, I am more aware of my actions and how it actually hurt my husband when I did that and I don’t allow myself to do it anymore. It still creeps up on me but I fight it.
It’s a natural thing to want to avoid what is causing you distress and yes, sometimes that’s our spouse! Talking it out and letting your partner talk it out does wonders for your relationship.
There are times when you really do need to take a break before words are spoken that might be regretful and that’s ok. Just let your partner know you want to talk but you need a minute or two, or three.
Misunderstandings happen all the time. This happens in marriage often. If you can talk through things beforehand, you can prevent misunderstandings and hurt feelings. Communicate with your spouse. Tell them about your day. Ask them about theirs.
If you need to, take time to gather your thoughts, write them down if necessary. Journaling, in general, can be very helpful.
As I mentioned earlier, whenever my husband wanted to go out and do something on his own or with his friends, I would get angry. I would seethe and seethe until I got so mad, I wouldn’t even speak to him when he got home. Not good.
It wasn’t until I started communicating to him about how it made me feel, that our kids also wanted to spend time with him on the weekends, that we were able to compromise and begin making better plans together.
I encourage you to ask your spouse how you can pray for them. Prayer is one of the biggest ways to help your husband or wife. Keeping the open atmosphere with your loved one creates a lifelong pattern that ensures a healthy and happy relationship.
On a related note to communication, I came across a post that shares some funny tweets from wives and husband. Check it out here.
The book above has changed my marriage and it comes highly recommended. I pray this book over and over every month and the growth and change in my husband has been enormous. There is also a book for the husbands to pray over their wives.
It is possible to have a happy and healthy marriage.
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It takes time and effort to make a marriage work. It takes caring, commitment, consideration, compromise, and communication but oh, how you are rewarded with love, joy, peace, and so much more.
A blessed marriage is a happy marriage. I truly hope you’ve been inspired by this post and were able to get some tips for a happy and healthy marriage.
Feel free to leave any comments or questions below.
Have a blessed day!