How to have a happy marriage

Today I'm sharing something very close to my heart, How to Have a Happy Marriage.

tips for a happy marriage

Ok, I really don't know exactly how to have a happy marriage.  I don't think anyone does!  Wouldn't it be nice if someone could give us all a super simple checklist that we could all check off and then live
happily ever after!

Unfortunately it's just not that easy because being married is a lot of hard work.  It's day in, day out work to make your most important relationship successful.

This week my husband and I are celebrating 19 years of marriage.  It's hard to believe it's been that long.  I still feel like we are the kids in this photo!

how to have a happy marriage - tips for living happily ever after

Even after all of these years of marriage, we do not have all of the answers.  All I can tell you is some of the things that have and have not worked for us in our marriage.

tips to have to a happy marriage

To get my husbands perspective, I asked him some questions and he agreed to answer them for me to post here.

What do you think is important in a marriage?

Communication.  I'm not saying you have to share everything, but you have to be willing to talk about things that come up.  Compromise.  The willingness to listen to the other side of something and then meet in the middle.  Laughing.  If you can't laugh with each other and at yourself, marriage is a long, arduous road!

What has made our marriage successful?

We've had some rough times, that is for sure, but I think the fact that we keep trying has helped us throughout the years.  We are working on our communication and we NEVER say the D word!

What are some good things we've done/are doing to make our marriage stronger?

I think date night is very important.  It's not something we've always done, but probably should have.  For so long we never really spent enough time alone and we lost touch with one another.  Also as you grow and get older, we change.  So without that constant contact and focus it's easy to loose out on changes in your partner.  At some point it might even seem like you don't know who your partner is anymore.  And that is when real problems can occur in a relationship.

marriage quote, russell m nelson

-Russell M. Nelson, General Conference, April 2006 

What advice would you give to someone just getting married?

Always voice what you want in your relationship. Don't avoid talking about something.  Sometimes you may fight (or loudly disagree as my wife calls it) Don't be afraid to fight for each other and for what you want from each other.  We all have needs and it's your job to let your partner know what's bothering you or what you need.  Don't expect them to be a mind reader.  Be prepared to work hard. Marriage is really hard!  Laugh and do something fun together as often as possible.  Find joy in small things.  This will keep you going on the really hard days.

Thoughts on marriage by a husband - tips for a happy marriage

Here are my thoughts on marriage:

Know your strengths and weaknesses.

I am a fixer, a talker and am very passionate about my feelings.  I want to talk about everything, then fix it, nice and neat, and have every bit of conflict resolved.  Chris is more quiet and thoughtful.

Since we are so different, some issues cannot be fixed in a short period of time.  And talking about it often, becomes nagging.  Once nagging happens, no one is happy. marriage, success

Always, ALWAYS give each other the benefit of the doubt.

It doesn't do any good to think ill thoughts of one another.  Most of the time, the other person does not have bad intentions.  Give your partner grace.

Figure out each what is important to each other.

Whether it's budgeting, childcare, spiritual matters, time spent with friends or family, division of household chores and differences in parenting, we have individual tastes and value different things.  All of these differences have to be talked about.

Show gratitude to and for each other.

There is power in gratitude, especially when shown to one another.

Be FIERCELY loyal to one another and to your marriage.

Never speak bad about your partner to anyone else.  Always prioritize your marriage above all other relationships in your life.

@ FierceMarriage on Twitter

Read books to improve your relationship.

We all need a tune up from time to time.  Some of my favorites are:  5 Love Languages

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In our 19 years of marriage, we have:  had 3 children, I quit working to be a stay at home mom, moved 3 times: 1 was across the country, been through 2 job losses, had 5 job changes, bought 2 houses, and for the first part of our marriage, my husband was a different faith than me.  All very common, yet stressful things for any marriage to weather.  I'm not sure how any marriage survives those kinds of stresses. Many don't, and I understand why they don't.

It is my belief that all marriages have their problems.  Both partners have to be willing to work (and work hard) on their relationship.  

Marriage is hard, but it's worth it!

In every disagreement in marriage, remember this important truth, "My spouse is my partner, not my enemy."  We will either win together or we will loose together.

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