Joe and I have been married for six and a half years now. I love my husband more than life itself. One of the questions we always get asked – in person, and via instagram stories – is how we keep our marriage strong. It seems as if people always want to know the secret sauce to a healthy relationship and a healthy marriage. With Valentine’s Day – the holiday of love – coming up, I thought now would be the perfect time to write this post. Thankfully, when I sat down to write it, the words came flowing out of me easily. That’s always how it goes when a post is meant to be. 🙂 I also consulted with Joe on this post and it was really interesting to see the differences in our answers.
So here it is… how we keep our marriage strong.
How We Keep Our Marriage Strong – From Emily:
- Always think the best of the other person: If I could give one piece of advice for a healthy and happy marriage, this would be it. Every morning I wake up and I thank God for the person I am married to. All day long I think about how lucky I am to be married to Joe. I also ALWAYS talk about Joe in a positive light. Even if the people around me are complaining about their spouses, I make it a point not to join in. By always framing and thinking about Joe in a positive light – it ensures positivity in our relationship. Think of it on the flip side. What if – all day – you only thought about how annoyed you were with your partner, or how much you disliked something they did. They didn’t take out the trash, they left the lights on, they were rude, they really made you mad last night. Whatever it is… if that is how you think about your partner… it’s going to directly affect your relationship. So no matter what, I choose to see Joe in the best light possible. I choose to only think positive things about him. It’s incredible how much it frames your marriage in happiness. This is true in all relationships – work, friends, spouses. Think of how it might change your perspective if you only chose to think positively about everyone in your life!!! Always thinking the best of the other person is the number 1 way we keep our marriage strong. If I could give newly married couples any piece of advice… this would be it.
- I keep my faith in God strong: Obviously this is my religious and personal preference, but I find that my marriage is strong because my faith is strong. Joe and I share the same faith, we make it a point to teach it to our children, and we make time with God a priority in our lives.
- Check in throughout the day: I always check in on Joe throughout the day and let him know I’m thinking of him. Even if it’s just a text here and there – it is always nice to know your partner is thinking of you.
- Make time for one another: Even though it is hard – especially with three kids – we always make it a point to take time for us. Here’s the deal – without our marriage – there is no family. Even if we miss out on a night or two with our kids every week… we know they will thank us in the long run. Communication in any relationship is KEY – and it gets really hard to communicate with three small kiddos running around you. We find that weekly dinners, date nights, etc make it so that we never lose sight of US.
- Be intimate: Here’s the deal – you gotta have sex. Whatever that looks like for you and your partner – cool. Maybe it’s once a week, once a month, or once a day… I don’t care. But sex is an important part in any marriage and it keeps you connected. Also – the more you do it – the more fun it is.
- Have fun: Marriage is fun. Living with your best friend is fun. Getting to have sex with that person is even better. I wish all my married friends looked at their marriages that way! SO have fun. Realize how lucky you are to be married to your best friend. Think the best of them. And have the sex. I promise – your marriage will be stronger than ever!
How We Keep Our Marriage Strong – From Joe:
- The first step is to marry the right person: The person you marry isn’t going to change, so although this may seem dumb to put in a marriage post, it really is the most important step.
- We disagree, but we don’t fight: We both have been in relationships in the past, where fighting was the norm. And the goal of that fighting was to win. In hindsight, we can see how detrimental that behavior was. In our marriage now – we hardly ever actually fight. We disagree all the time, but I can count on one hand the number of times an argument has escalated. We never go into a disagreement wanting to hurt one another. The one thing you have to remember – especially in your marriage – is that you can never take back what you have said. We always go into disagreements wanting to understand each other’s point of view and that really helps!
- Whoever cares more about the situation wins: being yielding will get you far in life – especially in marriage. An easy, recent, example. I wanted to send our kids to the public school down the street. It’s a great school and it’s much closer to our house. Emily wanted to send our kids to private school starting in Kindergarten. She cared WAY more about this situation than I did – so she wins. End of discussion.
We hope these tips and tricks help you to strengthen your marriage or your relationship! And if you have any tips and tricks that I’ve forgotten – leave them in the comments below!