Divorces happen for a multitude of reasons. Almost all are preventable if the two have the time, the energy and the desire to invest in the relationship, be open with each other, and be open to changing themselves. Oftentimes once our careers, the kids and the responsibilities are all squared away, most people just want to sit on the couch and relax. But it’s important to invest in the marriage too. Or else one day you wake up next to a stranger wondering what the point of it all is. No matter where you are in your marriage, it doesn’t take much to use and practice good habits in order to keep your relationship strong and avoid divorce. If you have been married for a while and feel it getting stale, or you and your spouse becoming distant, don’t focus and become anxiety ridden about the problem. That isn’t going to help anything. Instead, look for ways to reconnect. It might seem impossible. But a nice dinner together, a day or weekend spent doing an exciting activity you have in common or an evening relaxing together and reminiscing about the past can start to rev your engines, bring you back and help close the distance between you. Here are some other good marriage habits.
Don’t hold onto grudges. A grudge is like drinking poison in hopes of another feeling the pain. You’ll only be hurting yourself. Of course you need to work out problems. So talk to your spouse and work things out. Set up some ground rules. Get through to them and let them know how you feel and let them make reparations or show that they won’t do that again. But holding onto a grudge doesn’t help anything. It only makes you and, through you, the marriage worse. Next, don’t take your spouse for granted. Think of it as always being in the courting stage. That’s how to keep love young. Show them your gratitude for what they do. Write a little note for them now and then. Give them a little trinket, something meaningful. Thank them for what they’ve done around the house, even if it is the chore they are supposed to do. Couples who take one another for granted get divorced. Those that cherish one another have a romance that lasts a lifetime. Support your partner. If your spouse has a challenge or an opponent, give them all that you can to help them win. Teamwork is always better. Remember it’s you two against whatever you come up against. Always be on the same team and have each other’s back.
Make sure to talk about problems. Be patient. Really listen and overcome the problem together. Don’t shame or blame. Instead, find ways to overcome things that suit both of you. Look for the win-win or at least find ways to negotiate. Communication is the best tool you two can use to solve all of your problems. If you have depression or anxiety learn how to cope with it, and get professional help. Don’t let it eat you and the marriage, too. Find emotional support to meet these challenges. Break out of your routine every once in a while. Do something new, fun, exciting, spontaneous and novel that will get both your hearts racing. Studies have shown that sharing novel experiences together that get the pulse going can restart that lovey-dovey feeling you had when you two first got together. Set your boundaries and expect your spouse to respect them and respect your spouse’s boundaries. When you talk, don’t mince words. Tell them what’s inside your heart. Always speak from the heart and always tell them the truth. Trust your spouse and show them that you trust them. Compliment them when you feel something nice because of them, or you notice something nice about them. Find ways to grow together and bond. Have faith in your relationship. Trust them. If you think they are being unfaithful, discuss it with them. Don’t go sneaking around. You may be wrong, and if you are you will whittle away at the trust in your marriage. Lastly, find little rituals in your marriage just for you. Whether it’s writing each other notes and putting them on the fridge, hanging out in bed and drinking coffee on Sunday morning or what have you, these rituals will help you bond and make it stronger. For more on how to inject contentment and bliss in your relationship read, The Happy Couple: How to Make Happiness a Habit One Little Loving Thing at a Time by Barton Goldsmith, Ph.D.