Here’s how one of the 3 happy marriage tips we’re going to share today saw me through a very rough morning.
It had been a tough night. I was up with my 2-year-old a few times and I woke up grumpy. Nothing went right that morning, from a half gallon of milk spilled on the table (by a child who was “helping” to fix breakfast) to the makeshift splash pad that had been a dry bathroom two minutes prior—courtesy of a bath-taking, splashing toddler. Needless to say, by the time my husband got out of bed, I was in no mood to see him. After a few snide comments from me that he wasn’t helping enough, he looked at me and said, “Let’s pray.” Praying together is one of the 3 happy marriage tips that can make your marriage stronger.
My husband and I have four kids under the age of ten. And I can tell you that even in the craziness of daily life, it is possible to stay sane and happy in whatever situation life has you. These 3 tips for a happy marriage will get you and keep you on the right path.
Commit. Commit. Commit.
- Commit to each other to remove the word divorce from your vocabulary. Words said in anger, that you may not necessarily mean, can take root and cause more damage to your relationship.
- Commit to spending alone time with each other. This is a big one. Connect without interruption for at least 30 minutes a day. Use this time to lift each other up, give updates on the budget, and talk through plans and goals. This is your time to spend as a couple discussing things that are important to each of you.
- Commit to not calling each other names. Studies by psychologist John Gottman indicate that name-calling or contempt is the number one behavioral predictor for divorce. These other four patterns that hurt marriages are worth looking at too.
Set realistic expectations.
- Take one evening to write down three expectations you have of each other. Exchange the lists and see what the other wrote. My husband and I have done this exercise several times in our marriage. Oftentimes our expectations are much different than what the other perceives them to be or our own can be unrealistic.
- Set expectations on Friday night for the weekend. Families today are busy and overcommitted. Spend some time on Friday night before your heads hit the pillow discussing the plans for the weekend so that you can work as a team to accomplish each other’s goals.
- It’s one thing to pray for your spouse when everything is going great. It’s another thing to stop and pray for each other in the middle of a disagreement. There have been countless times my husband and I have been in the middle of a disagreement and he has stopped and said, “Let’s pray.” Nothing will break down any walls that I built up faster than asking God to protect our marriage. Bless my husband.
- Pray as a couple. Let your children see you praying together. This will put you two on the same page, creating a team atmosphere for your whole family while demonstrating to your children that rely on God for your everyday decisions and you are letting Him lead your life.
So what sets you off in your marriage?