This year, my husband and I will be celebrating 4 years of marriage and 7 years of being together. The time has certainly flown by quickly, but the lessons we have learned along the way have been vast and contributed to growth within our marriage. Here are 15 things I’ve Learned Since My Wedding Day:
1) You’re Not Always Right
Admit it. You are not and will not ALWAYS be right. There will be times that you are indeed wrong. Own it. Fess up to it. Apologize
2) Say you’re Sorry
If you’re in the wrong, always say that you’re sorry. Saying you’re sorry can be difficult to say, but it helps both members of the relationship move forward after a disagreement.
3) Never Go to Bed Angry
Contrary to what others may say, you should never go to bed early. It’s bad enough that the night was ruined, so why start the day off on a bad note. Nothing is resolved without communication. There is no such thing as “sleeping off the anger.” Regardless of how long it’ll take to resolve the conflict, it’s worth it to go to bed on good terms.
4) Show your Love in Front of Your Kids
Whether you are happy or angry with your spouse, only let your children see the love that you share for each other rather than anger. Our children are sponges and they learn so much from what we say and do and our actions speak volumes. We can set them up for a successful, respectful and loving future relationship by doing the same ourselves.
5) Date Nights are Hard to Come By
Being that we are both working, it’s hard to find time for date nights. Add a child into the mix, and it’s near impossible. Regardless, making time and scheduling dates with your spouse can help keep the relationship fun and carefree (at least for a few hours). One should never be too busy to spend quality time with their spouse.
6) Most Arguments are Avoidable
Oftentimes I have found in our relationship (even more so since being married) that the things we argue about aren’t worth the argument to begin with. If something little is bothering you, decide if it’s worth an argument. Choose your battles.
7) Constantly Invest/Protect Your Marriage
There will always be outside factors threatening to hurt your marriage. Those things are catalysts and would be happy to see that their actions and/or words help split up an otherwise happy marriage. My advice, surround yourself with other happy couples rather than unhappy couples. It’s so easy to get caught up in the drama others may be going through and unfortunately they are secretly hoping you and your spouse are also going through the things they are. Remove those people who may threaten your marriage. Protect your marriage and invest in it rather than strike it down. Always defend your spouse rather than tear them down. You should ALWAYS be your spouses #1 fan.
8) Sex is Essential
Sex should never become obsolete or become a chore in a marriage. If you’re extremely busy, schedule a time for some one-on-one time. We have needs as humans, and fulfilling those needs is both rewarding and fun. Sex is a huge stress-reliever and is a great way to connect with your spouse on more levels than one.
9) Don’t Hold Grudges
I briefly touched on this in #3 never go to bed angry, but along with that it’s important to NOT hold grudges. When an argument or disagreement has resolved, referring back to them and rehashing them in a new argument is both unfair and immature. What’s past is past and there is no way to bring up the past. Let it be.
10) Try New Things Together
One way to keep the marriage spicy, is to try new things together. This can be trying a new restaurant or trying out a new hobby. Whatever it may, experience something new together. It’s a great relationship building tool and helps keep the marriage fun and interesting.
11) Say “I love you” Daily
You should never let a day pass by without telling your spouse that you love them. Say I love you even in an argument. I’ve always believed that it’s important to say “I love you” daily because if unfortunately it’s the last time you were to see your spouse, wouldn’t you want them to have heard “I love you” once last time? Absolutely.
12) Realize that it’s ok (and good) to want time Apart
It’s ok to want to spend time with other people. You shouldn’t feel guilty if you want a girl’s night to attend a movie and have a good glass of wine. On the contrary if your spouse wants to have a guy’s day filled with beer and football, don’t give him a guilt trip for wanting to do this. It’s ok to do things without your spouse (within reason of course).
13) Complement Each other Daily
Always find something to compliment your spouse on. Compliments are great confidence builders. Even leaving a note for your spouse thanking them on the meal you made for them that night or thanking them for something else they helped you with goes a long way in a marriage. Compliments NEVER get old.
14) Marriage isn’t Easy
If anyone tries to sit there and tell you that marriage is easy, they’re lying through their teeth. Marriage is hard and it requires work daily. There will be good times and bad, trials and tribulations, failures and successes. What makes or break a marriage during these times are how we handle them with our spouse. Working together as a team allows a couple to work through anything. Marriage is hard, but it’s worth all the hard times and the good.
15) Jesus should be Present in EVERY Marriage
This is something I have discovered as of late. I’m not claiming to be the most religious person in the world, but I have started to realize how important it is to have Jesus present in my marriage. Rejoice in him, Rejoice in your Marriage and Your Spouse. Rejoice in life together.
I hope that you can relate to some of the things I have learned since getting married. Our marriage has continued to grow and mature through the years, and we are more in love today than we were 6.5 years ago when we first met. I encourage you all to embrace some of these and incorporate them into your marriage. I guarantee you will see exponentially positive results.