7 Tips for a Remarkable Marriage
Learn the seven simple keys to a remarkable marriage.
Posted Dec 18, 2016
All couples face this 7-part challenge which--like most things worth doing--is simple in theory and difficult in practice:
- To offer an apology when an apology is due.
- To make the other feel special, valued and chosen.
- To respect differences, including different ways of responding to stress. (Under stress one partner may get comfortable by seeking more distance, the other by seeking more togetherness.)
- To focus on changing one's own steps in the dance rather than waiting for the other to change first.
- To listen without defensiveness to your partner's anger and pain, even when he or she is accusing you of causing it.
- To stop the negative comments that erode the foundation of marriage and friendship, and replace them with positive ones.
- To do the things that you say you are going to do.
A postscript: To make this list a practice you’ll need to have goodwill and a genuine wish to create a better marriage. You’ll also need a willingness to focus on your self, which does not mean self-blame but rather the capacity to observe and change your own part of a problem that brings you pain.
It helps even more if you occasionally muster the maturity to bring your best self to the relationship even when the other person is being a jerk.
It’s fine to start small. Get Marriage Rules from your local library and try this small experiment: Each of you picks two rules that you want your partner to follow. Stick to them for three months and you’ll see a big change. Small, positive changes have a way of morphing into more generous, expansive ones. Your relationship with thank you in advance.