Sunday Thoughts (4 tips for a happy marriage)

I often talk about my wife Karen, and how blessed I am to have her in my life.

Our marriage is a true partnership. A happy partnership.

But it wasn’t always like that.

We’ve had rough patches, like many couples do.

Times when we were angry. 

Not spending enough time together. Putting work or our kids above our relationship.

But with time, and a lot of work, we got our marriage on track. And we’ve kept it there.

If you’ve been struggling in a relationship, maybe some of our tips for a happy marriage can help you too.

It starts with a foundation. Here are the four basic principles of our marriage. 

What works for us.

First, we don’t expect our own happiness to come from the other.

There’s that saying “happy wife, happy life.” 

I’m all for making sure Karen is happy. But for our marriage to work, I know I need to be happy, too.

And here’s another thing.

You shouldn’t expect your spouse to make you happy. That’s just too much pressure for your spouse and a recipe for disappointment. 

I’m not saying you shouldn’t do nice things for your husband or wife. You should.

But your own happiness needs to come from within.

Spend time doing things that fulfill you. That make you happy.

Only when both people in marriage are happy can you truly have a meaningful, lasting relationship.

And that leads to the second principal: have each other’s backs. 

Support your spouse with the things they like to do. I know I couldn't write this and work like I do without Karen’s encouragement. And, I give Karen my support with her projects as well.

With support comes trust, a sense of knowing that the person you’re with is by your side through thick and thin.

Our third principle is this: we work as a team. 

A happy marriage is a marriage of equals.

If one partner feels they’re bearing more responsibility than the other, that’s bound to lead to resentment.

If there’s a big decision to be made, like our move to Florida, then we sit down and discuss it together. 

We weigh the pros and cons together. And we develop a solution together.

No voice or opinion is more important than the other. We are equals.

And finally, you have to prioritize the marriage. Above work. Above other family. Even above your kids (not always easy to do).

Make time for each other. Sprinkle in some fun for just the two of you. 

This can be hard if you have little kids or grandkids at home. Believe me, I remember.

But essential to a happy marriage is taking time to enjoy alone time together. Without the kids or grandkids. Without the distraction of work.

It could be as simple as a regular lunch date. Or, playing golf together. Something you both enjoy.

A truly happy marriage doesn’t happen by accident. It’s a partnership, and it does take care and attention.

But, with work comes reward. And a happy lifetime partner is the greatest reward of all.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

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Comments

Michael Brennan - December 28, 2020

It’s the “unhappy” times with our spouses that reveal the places in us in need of acceptance, security and significance ( purpose).. those places can only be filled by Someone capable of fulfilling those three needs in an unconditional way … tapping into that unconditional Love enables us to love each other without making each other the source of our happiness ..

Katheryn R Seyller - December 28, 2020

Jeff loved your article about a Happy Marriage. So true. So many couples are not happy. My husband and i always say if a couple are in a canoe together they both have to row in the same direction. Thanks again for the article. Happy New Year.

Melinda Baron - December 28, 2020

Thank you Thank you Thank you for the tips on marriage relationship. These will help us get back on track and strengthen our marriage. Such a blessing. Happy Awesome 2021 New Year!

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