The Happy-Marriage Secret

With roughly half of all marriages ending in divorce, a lot of people are wondering what the secret to a happy, healthy marriage is. Nobody goes into marriage wanting to be a divorce statistic, after all. There are all sorts of books and magazine articles and puff piece news stories out there claiming to hold the secret to a healthy marriage, a long one filled with happy memories and growing old together. But the fact of it is that there’s no huge secret to having a happy marriage.

A marriage is a journey through life, with a lot of good times and a lot of bad times along the way. Just like any other relationship in your life, there will be times when you’re very happy and there are going to be times when you want to smack your spouse upside the head. The trick is to minimize the bad times and maximize the good, and to work together to have as harmonious a marriage as you can.

With that in mind, there are a few tips that can help you down this road. It won’t always be easy, and it won’t always be fun, but by following these very general tips, you may just make it:

Strive for open communication. Communication’s not just a marriage thing, really. The key to any kind of healthy relationship is being able to communicate effectively. It’s just especially important in a marriage, because you’re in it for such a long time. Properly communicating your feelings, worries, hopes, and dreams and understanding those of your spouse are vital to a healthy marriage.
Work towards empathy. This goes along with communication. Being able to put yourself in somebody else’s shoes, understanding their problems and concerns is important for having a relationship, because it lets you feel how somebody else feels. Empathy can make a marriage work as a single entity instead of two people acting selfishly.
Work on forgiveness. Everyone’s imperfect, and there are going to be times when both of you screw up. It’s important to keep things in perspective, and realize that the little things are just that: little things. Just keep in mind that everyone’s human and will drop the ball sometime. Forgiveness is key to keeping a marriage healthy and moving forward, not looking back in anger.

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