Wednesday, December 20, 2017

9 Secrets to a Happy Marriage

Today my husband and I celebrate 9 years of marriage. Nine years of being married to the best friend I've ever had, nine years of struggles, triumphs, and lessons learned.





When we said "I Do" on that Warm December afternoon, after being together for 8 or so years, we thought we were pretty ready to face the adventure of Marriage and to be honest, we had some amazing adventures, but we also had some struggles and disappointments. So for my post today, I wanted to share 9 things that have helped our marriage thrive. - These are in no particular order, may they be an encouragement to you.

Laugh Often
There are so many struggles in the beginning of a marriage, for example, I didn't know until I was married that there was a "correct way" to make a sandwich, and I had been doing is WRONG for my whole life!  In the moment, it was upsetting that this man I married would dare to be unhappy with something so silly as a sandwich, but 9 years later we still giggle about the silly diagram he drew me to help me pack his lunch.
A day without laughter is a day wasted
Charlie Chaplin
Love your Human
I think sometimes it is easy to get wrapped up in the romance of marriage, and being in love. We watch cheesy romantic comedies, that portray perfect love, and grand gestures of love, and begin to picture in our minds how romantic life will be. Truth is, we are human and humans are not perfect. Sometimes your spouse will let you down, sometimes that will sweep you off your feet. Love your spouse during times when you maybe feel disappointed, like when he doesn't give you a card or any type of acknowledgment on Valentines Day, and when he books a surprise day of pampering at the spa.

Love your spouse and all their imperfections, you yourself aren't perfect either you know. ;-)
*points finger at herself* 

Protect Each other

This one is a big one, it is crucial that you guard one another's hearts and emotions. My husband is very good at keeping his frustrations with my faults between the two of us, he protects my feelings and encourages me to grow.

Listen

Listen to your spouse as they tell you about their day.
Listen to your spouse tell you about (fill in the blank)

Put down your phone
When we got married, Smart Phones were not in the hands of every middle schooler and above. In fact, I'm pretty sure I had a Sprint Flip phone with no texting.  Now that everyone has instant access to all forms of social media, and our friends it is easy to get distracted and miss out on the NOW. My husband and I recently took a trip to Disney for my birthday and as I went back to my phone to look at the pictures I realized I hardly took any.  Then I thought about all the conversations, and memories we made just connecting with one another, and I felt so content.

Give it a try, disconnect from your phone and just be together once in a while!
Photopass! 
Thanks, Photopass!
Eat together 
No matter what, my husband and I always eat together.  - We find this to be a special time of the day, and one to connect with our children as well. To further the case for eating together, I was just reading a Canadian Study that looks at the long-term effects of families eating together starting in Early Childhood. In our family, we have always put the girls at the table with us when we eat, even before they ate solid food. - Read the study here. 

Travel Together
Have you ever watched couples on the Amazing Race? Isn't it crazy how much they seem to bicker and argue?  Truth is, you can learn SO much about a person by traveling with them. For example, I am a planner, I LOVE to plan everything out, research menus, check the weather, make an agenda. My husband,... not so much.  Travel together, make memories!


We travel not to escape life, 
but for life not to escape us
anonymous
Cherish your Marriage
Cherish: to care for deeply, to treasure
Let's be honest, a healthy and thriving marriage is a lot of work. However, if it is something you truly treasure and love it doesn't feel hard at all. 


Chase the SAME goal
It is so important to be chasing after the same goals and supporting one another. A couple years ago I decided to pursue my Master's Degree while working full time, figuring out life as a WIFE, and supporting my husband, who was always pursuing his Master's degree.
It was a mess. - I was doing fine in school, but I was so stressed out.
After many heart-to-heart conversations about our hopes and dreams and goals for the future, I realized that my Master's in Reading Education would be fun to study, but it wouldn't get us closer to our dreams.

Here we are, years later living one of the goals we discussed during that time, and it is AWESOME!

So, Happy Anniversary Chris! Here's to many more memories and lessons learned together!


Sharing is caring, if you found this encouraging would you pass it along? 






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