Hi, I’m so glad you’re here today. Having a relationship that is fun & stands the test of time is SO obtainable. Take a look at my 10 Happy Relationship and happy Marriage Tips and pick the top ones that may be missing in your relationship. Put these tips into action every day. Focus on them. Act on them. Enjoy!
Hugs, Dr. Liz
P.S. Do you have some happy relationships and happy marriage tips you’d be willing to share? Share on my FB page or email directly to me. I’d love to know just what you both are doing to keep happy going!
1. Be honest with each other…but not TOO honest!
Many of those I’ve helped in the past once thought that making their partner happy was the best plan to maintain a happy marriage or relationship. Not true!
Sure, it’s essential to always *want* to make your partner happy, but eventually, if you feel you are the one giving too much of yourself in the relationship and ignoring your own wishes, resentment and frustration will build. It’s easy to agree with everything your partner says when you start dating but trust me to come back to haunt you.
For example, pretending to love something you don’t in the early stages can lead to a lifetime of silently resenting your partner for it even though you said you liked it in the first place. Just be honest from the start, and you’ll save yourself a mountain of hassle.
From significant decisions such as a new career or a new home to smaller decisions like choosing a restaurant or vacation destination, be honest with your spouse. Don’t just concede to their desire because they may have no idea it doesn’t align with your own. Especially if you don’t tell them!
Honesty in a relationship also extends beyond appearances and desires. It should also be rooted in things that involve your relationship, your family, your whereabouts, and your finances.
In other areas of your life and relationship, being honest with your spouse is one of the best happy marriage tips to have a long and healthy relationship. So long as it’s done with tact in those less-than-optimal times. For example, if you’re only going to hurt their feelings by being brutally honest, think about how you can rephrase your opinion without the hurt.
A statement such as, “I don’t think it’s the best color for you” is far better than blurting, “Ugh, it washes you out so much that you look like a corpse.” Be honest…it’s constructive and healthy…but be sensitive.
2. Stay in Touch!
While staying in touch by phone, text, Messenger, or smoke signal. However, communicating through the day is essential. I mean actual physical contact. An impromptu shoulder rub or back rub, holding hands, cuddling up to watch a program or just a loving touch on his or her back.
Staying “in touch” is one of the important happy marriage tips that enable you to show love and affection while demonstrating your connection. Granted, some people aren’t touchy-feely type people. They show love differently. But even so, even those averse to public displays of affection should not forget the importance of touch. They can give good feels throughout the day
A piece of advice for a happy marriage is taking the touch to another level, don’t forget about sex! Plenty of sexless marriages survive, but most of them aren’t happy. Kiss, make out, touch, have regular sex. When was the last time you kissed “eyes wide open”…look- ing at each other? Don’t allow yourselves to fall into the trap of being roommates raising kids. Successful marriages are also sexually fulfilled – for both partners – however that looks like for you (don’t compare yourselves to others, every couple is unique).
In short, successful marriages are passionate, kind, generous, fun, and loving – inside and outside the bedroom. Touch, affection, and intimacy don’t always have to exist between the sheets.
3. Keep Your Standards High!
One of the most essential happy marriage tips is to expect more, be more. Couples who hold their partners to a reasonably high standard of treatment, communication, and affection, or intimacy (not always sex!) have better, healthier marriages. If you expect a healthier, happier relationship with your partner, you dramatically improve your chances of having one.
4. Recognize that relationships are roller coasters!
Relationships and marriage both have their ups and downs. Inevitably, pure elation will eventually give way to frustration, annoyance, or anger. When this happens, it’s not a sign that the relationship is on the outs. Instead, it’s a sign of a completely healthy relationship!
To expect that a relationship will always be rosy and romantic is impractical. And that’s okay! Some days, you’ll feel like a crazy, lovesick teenager — and others, you’ll feel wholly stressed or wrought with angst – even over the small stuff.
One of the key happy marriage tips is to embrace and revel in the good times and be there for each other during the bad. This is so important that it’s even woven into nearly all wedding vows!
If you’re mad at each other, it’s okay, just remember that you’re in this together. It’s okay to hit emotional hurdles in your relationship. It’ll happen, just hug extra tight when these hurdles inevitably pass.
5. Forced change is never permanent!
Many women ignore the man’s flaws and believe they will change their man after marriage. Wise women know it’s better to accept the man she loves as he is.
If he drops his dirty socks constantly on the floor, that won’t change if the wife nags him daily to pick them up.
A man should be involved enough to try and make some deliberations to make his wife happy. If a husband knows it bothers his wife and yet, drops his socks on the floor, he should probably make an effort to pick them up or avoid doing so. If two people care about each other, they will accept each other’s faults and flaws while also keeping the other person’s happiness in mind.
Let change happen naturally. Men and women alike may make some changes if each realizes it will make their partner happier, but it’s always one of the best (and often longer-lasting) happy marriage tips if it’s rooted in a personal choice rather than constant nagging.
6. You Don’t Need More Pleasure. You Need More Excitement!
Happy marriages aren’t rooted in the physical. Sure, it’s important, but think back to the day you first fell in love. What were you doing? What activities were you enjoying together?
Think back to the nerves of your first date, the butterflies of the moment you felt that connection. Now work to recapture that time and time again. It can happen! It DOES happen!
Protect your marriage and paying heed to your partner’s interest by regularly trying new things and sharing NEW experiences come as necessary happy marriage tips. Make a list of your favorite things you and your partner do together, then make a list of the things you’d each like to try.
Old habits become boring habits. Make plans to do something never done before a few times a month and watch your connection grow! If finances are an issue, try new experiences together.
Playing a different board game, taking up a new adventure sport, finding a new trail to hike on, anything to help keep the spice in a relationship. Couples will bond over these experiences and discover new topics to talk on. Couples who engage in new activities will always have new things to look forward to together.
7. How you fight is more important than what you fight over!
The first three minutes of an argument will give a good indication of how healthy your marriage is. Couples who have fights that immediately descend into aggressiveness, name-calling, or personal criticisms are more likely to see their relationships spiral out of control than couples who learn to fight neutrally and with respect.
Research shows that couples who speak calmly, make eye contact during communication, sit or stand at the same level, and use open questions fare better when things go awry. The most successful couples abide by the happy marriage tips of being equal and respectful. They know how to de-escalate their fights, either by asking for a break or using humor to diffuse the tension.
Defensiveness, stubbornness, or casting out scathing rebukes will only lead to trouble. Remember, through happy times and bad. You’re in this together. Never let frustration supersede the love and respect you have for each other. As with any argument, this too shall pass…saying or doing something negative that you regret and he or she harbors for eternity is a recipe for disaster.
8. Keep dating!
I don’t mean seeing other people! I simply mean you need to keep the spice alive with your partner. Just because you’re in a committed relationship or marriage, this doesn’t mean that you should give up dating forever.
I always encourage couples to keep that spark alive with regular, intentional quality time…whether at home or out and about. Question yourself, “When was the last time I went for a date with my partner?” An actual date night. Not a night out with other couples or a trip with the kids. I mean a real bonafide date where it’s just you two together. Alone.
To talk about YOU things.
While there’s a shared laundry list of financial and household responsibilities to take care of week after week, you both still need to make time to connect emotionally. Making a routine of focused, one-on-one quality time is the best way to sustain the kind of connection you enjoyed at the beginning and keep your relationship or
marriage going strong. This in mind, think of something you two can do together this weekend. Have kids? Who can watch them? Not sure what to do? Talk! I’m pretty sure you know each other well enough by now to come up with suggestions!
9. The little things still mean EVERYTHING!
Too many relationships blossom during the ‘honeymoon’ phase of courtship and connection and then start to fade into complacency as the months and years go by.
There are many ways to show a husband or wife that they are essential to you or that they are on your mind. It could be by texting or emailing them during the day when both of you are at work.
This will show immense love if your spouse is having a tedious day or week, or has an important meeting in line. Leave a little note of love in the bathroom mirror or in their car before they leave for work and it will be a nice surprise.
Musician and radio host Erica Campbell, in this short video talks about the little things matter in marriage and how ignoring them, can build a tornado:
Not taking the love you found for granted has been one of the most understated happy marriage tips of all time. Surprise your mate with little acts of love and affection. From a simple note in his or her bag to placing a ribbon atop his or her favorite candy bar or bottle of wine.
Do the unexpected, place little surprises in unusual locations, and never think an act of love or kindness is too small. There’s no such thing when they stack and stack and stack on top of each other!
10. Split the last cookie 50/50!
Short and sweet, but if you’ve come to the bottom of the platter and there’s only one cookie left – split it evenly and share. Marriage is made up of two equal halves in every sense of the phrase, so yes, this is purely a metaphor.
No two marriages are equal. At the same time, marriage doesn’t always sail smoothly. The ups and downs in relationships make the journey worthwhile. These universally acknowledged happy marriage tips are sure to rekindle the spark in marriage. Keep the romance alive in marriage and make your relationship healthier and happier.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
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With over 30 years as a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and Life Transitions & Relationship Coach, I have extensive experience in working with individuals, couples and families. Additionally, I have been Clinical Director of hospital programs such as; Adult Stress, Women's and Children's Issues and teach college level Psychology courses.
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