Marriage is a sacred relationship. It’s a commitment between two individuals to nurture and care for each other. These two individuals come from different backgrounds. They have different upbringings, diverse opinions, and tastes. Whether it’s a love or arranged marriage, these differences are common.
When such two different individuals come together in marriage, friction is inevitable. Arguments are bound to happen. So, can this friction be minimized, and can marriages become blissful? The answer is yes. Here are 16 secrets that reduce friction and help in building a happy marriage.
16 secrets for a happy marriage:
1. Minimize expectations – In marriages, people expect too much from the spouse. They expect the spouse to be perfect and without any flaws. One thing we need to understand is all of us are imperfect and evolving in life. Just like us, our spouse, too, will be imperfect. So, lowering the expectations from the spouse will help in having a happy marriage.
2. Acceptance – We all have our way of looking at life. None of us are right or wrong. It is just our interpretation of life. Just because the other person is our spouse, it does not mean they need to interpret life in the same way as we do it. They might have a different way of looking at life. They might have a different set of values, principles, habits, and that’s ok. When we start accepting our spouse as he or she is, marriage significantly improves.
3. Respecting each other’s families- Everyone is attached to their parents and siblings in some way, and they carry love and affection for them, which is natural. In marriages, one rule that needs to be followed by both the partners is respecting each other’s families. No one likes their family members to be abused or ill-treated. When you respect the family members of your spouse, you win brownie points from your spouse.
4. Appreciation – Appreciating our spouse and not taking for granted what he or she does is very important for a happy marriage. Our spouse might be doing so much for us without even being asked. With appreciation, people bloom and feel cared for and valued. Whenever your spouse does some help or favor to you or surprises you, don’t take such kind gestures for granted. Appreciate your spouse whole-heartedly. When you appreciate such actions, they feel encouraged to do more of these actions.
5. Respect – In marriages, it is common to have conflicting opinions. It is common to have disagreements. But what matters is to express these disagreements with respect. In our workplace, too, such conflicts happen, but we convey our disagreements respectfully. When it comes to personal relationships, we tend to take the other person for granted and express our disagreement disrespectfully. And in the process, the other person’s self-esteem is hurt. This can be avoided. More than love, mutual respect is what keeps the marriage strong, healthy, and happy.
6. Sharing the responsibilities – Running a household will have various tasks like cooking, cleaning, budgeting, earning money, buying stuff, taking care of children, etc. When both the partners sit together and plan how to do these responsibilities, it makes life easy. You can think of delegating some tasks by hiring a maid. Both of you can divide the tasks between you and figure out a way to manage household tasks without burdening a single person.
7. Open communication – Because of all the romantic films and novels, people think in love and marriage, their spouse can read their mind and understand without telling anything. This is not realistic. Mind reading is not possible for anyone. When you want something or don’t like something, instead of expecting the other person to understand it and take care, you openly communicate your feelings. Say it out and ask the other person to take care of it. Open communication helps in resolving the issues quickly.
8. Give time – Any relationship needs time to build. Give time and understand each other. Spend time doing things that make you both happy. Modern life has many distractions, like gadgets, games, etc. Enjoy these little joys, but make giving time to your spouse a higher priority.
9. Give space – All of us need ‘me time’ where we pursue our hobbies and things that matter to us and spend time with our own friends etc. Give space to your spouse to do what he or she likes doing. Just because two individuals are married, it does not mean both should have the same hobbies and same friends. Understand that your spouse is an individual who had hobbies, friends before marriage, and they are important to your spouse.
10. Friendship – In marriages, loving and being loved are overrated. Love is an emotion that comes and goes and loving forever anyone might not be realistic. We respect our parents, care for our parents but might not feel love for them every single day. Not feeling love for our parents on some days does not make us a bad child. It’s the same with marriage too. Some days, you may not feel love for your partner, and your partner might not feel love for you. That’s alright. Build a strong friendship in your relationship where you are comfortable with each other and have fun. Friendship plays an essential role in keeping a marriage healthy and happy.
11. Take care of your spouse’s needs – In marriage, each of us expects certain things. Your spouse may have physical, emotional, mental needs and expect some things from you. Take care of these needs and be there for your spouse. Don’t put down or belittle their needs no matter how unimportant these needs might feel to you. Try your best to fulfill the needs, and if you cannot fulfill the need, communicate it respectfully that you cannot take care of it due to so and so reasons.
12. Self-Love – All of us have various needs in life, and our spouse cannot fulfill all these needs. Our spouse is evolving just like us and has his or her own needs. Our spouse can fulfill some needs but not all needs. So it is imperative to have self-love and nurture our self. Take care of your own needs as much as possible. Love yourself and pamper yourself.
13. Be strong – A strong individual makes a great spouse. By strong, its not just physical but on all levels. Work and make yourself strong physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually, and financially. Be a strong individual with proper self-esteem. It is tough for a needy person to become a great spouse.
14. Stay loyal – Loyalty is an important attribute of a marriage. Stay loyal and committed to each other in thoughts, emotions, words, and actions.
15. Forgiveness – In marriage, mistakes do happen. You might lose temper, or your spouse might lose the temper. Fights happen. It’s not possible to be loving and respectful all the time. So, it’s important to forgive yourself and your partner. The faster you can forgive and move on, the better it is for your marriage.
16. Keep symbols alive – While marrying, based on your family tradition, you would have exchanged wedding rings or used mangal sutra as a sacred symbol of marriage. Keep these symbols alive in your life. These symbols reinforce the sacredness of marriage and help in a certain way.
These are some pointers that can help you build a healthy and happy marriage. Yes, love is essential in marriage, but that’s not the only ingredient for a great marriage. All the above pointers are also needed. Marriage is a beautiful commitment where you commit to taking care of each other for a lifetime. Enjoy this beautiful relationship, and make the most out of it.