So, how long does the honeymoon period last? This is a difficult question to answer, because…
Rules for a happy marriage include forgiveness, telling your spouse you love them daily, even having a team mindset.
The truth is, there are no shortage of rules you can apply to making your marriage a happy one.
But please don’t get hung up on rules. If you do, then you’ll always be searching for the secret to making your marriage a happy one.
Just remember that this is a team game and once you become individualistic in your marriage, it’s in trouble.
My number one rule for a happy marriage? Be open and honest with each other in everything.
That includes finances, flirting episodes at work or God forbid, if you accidentally break or lose something of sentimental value to your partner.
Rules For A Happy Marriage
Another important ingredient to a happy marriage is having respect for each other.
You should not only love each other but you must respect each other. For example, have you been guilty of gossiping about your spouse to your friends?
If you answered yes, then stop it.
Are you guilty of criticizing or putting your partner down to your friends?
Again if the answer is yes you need to stop.
You’ve got to be your partner’s biggest fan. If you continue gossiping or criticizing them to others and they find out, the door opens for resentment to creep in.
I call resentment a married couple’s biggest enemy. Once it gets a foothold in a relationship it’s usually game over.
When I learnt how important it was to respect my wife, my marriage strengthened tenfold.
Everyone has a circle around them that no one should invade without permission. I estimate that if you put your arm out and then do a 360 degree turn, that’s your personal circle.
My wife gave me permission to enter her circle. She trusted me to respect her space. She let me into her private area.
I love her for trusting me to be part of her personal space. It’s the same in reverse.
Two individuals who fall in love, enter each other’s circles and then become a team with one joint circle of personal space around them. They love and respect each other and each day, fortify their circle.
5 Rules Of A Happy Married Life
Relationship expert Erin Montgomery LAMFT, LSAR says, being open and honest with each other lays the foundation for other rules to come into play.
Once openness and honesty is established in every area, then most of the other rules take care of themselves.
Montgomery has five rules for a happy marriage she says couples would do well to write down and put on the fridge. They are:
- be open and honest
- communicate with intent
- practice active listening
- supporting and building each other up
- allow space for personal growth and compassion for one another
Montgomery is very adamant though, what the number one rule of a happy marriage is.
“Be open and honest. You’ve got to be willing to talk about it. And you’ve got to be willing to say exactly how you feel”.
“I mean, you can be tactful but if you hide things or don’t express things, you can’t expect the other person to understand or to know. That is number one”.
Communicate With Intent And Listen Actively
I recently saw a meme that contained a powerful message. It said:
“What if I told you I already told you and you didn’t listen?”
That’s powerful and says a lot.
Montgomery says communicating with intent and being an active listener are crucial to creating a happy marriage.
“You’ve got to communicate with intent and you’ve got to have a reason behind your communication”.
“If you’re trying to get somebody to understand there’s a problem and you want it addressed, you have to sit down and actually have a conversation about it”.
“Complaining about it or gossiping about it whatever it is, is not going to get you what you need”.
“Another big one is practicing active listening”.
“If your partner comes to you with one of those problems and says – ’you know, I’m really struggling with this’ – you’ve got to sit down and really listen”.
“And that means sitting and listening to what they say”.
“Not sitting and hearing what they say and formulating what you’re going to say next”.
“Just don’t do that”.
“That means you’re missing the point and just looking for your next argument”.
How’s Your Marriage Doing Right Now?
I hope you’re reading this article simply because you’re looking for ways to strengthen your marriage.
If not then I assume you’re having issues.
Have you tried to sit down with your partner and communicate with intent what your issue is?
If you have and it didn’t achieve much, then it’s possible the problem your having has got to a stage when you need an intercessor.
Someone who can give you both a “forty thousand foot view” of your marriage.
I said both because unless you both commit to speaking with someone, then this will all be for nought.
Whether it’s a trusted friend or a professional counselor, you both need to commit to solving your problem.
On the other hand, if you’re about to get married or newly wed, then remember the five rules for a happy marriage.
Start with being open and honest. This lays the foundation for the success of your marriage.
And remember what I said about respecting each other’s personal space?
It takes trust to allow someone into it. Respect that trust and be grateful they chose you to share that space with them.