10 + 5 ways to have a happy relationship and a healthy marriage
I am no expert, but yeah I have a happy married life and have had it for almost 25 years. I thought I would jot down some of the things which I feel are important for a couple to make a go of it. Most of these things should come instinctively and that is why I feel that if the first couple of years go well, it means the foundation is a good one. But if they don’t, well, all of us make mistakes and its never too late to say sorry.
Here are some things that I feel are intrinsic to the success of a marriage but these are my own personal observations. You are free to add any of your own.
1. Never think that you are too good for him or her, because it’s the beginning of a most dissatisfying relationship. To feel superior either because you are better looking or earning more money is self-defeating. So when it comes to your relationship with your partner, stop thinking of yourself in terms of your looks, your money, your talent or your intelligence. It you have to evaluate yourself, do it on the basis of how kind and understanding and sensitive you are in the relationship. But best not to feel a sense of superiority here either as often your other may have some other good qualities. For example he/she may be an unselfish person, a good natured happy person, or of a calm nature, more truthful and so on. All I am saying is, be grateful for each other.
2. Some people are always ready to say sorry (less ego) while some are always reluctant. Resentments can build up if one person in a relationship says sorry everytime and the other never does. One day this can destroy the very foundation of a relationship as without acknowledging the hurt, it cannot begin to heal. I think those who find it difficult to acknowledge their mistakes need to improve in this department.
3. Always defend your partner in public, and this means even if it’s your own parents or other family members who are criticizing. You can always discuss anything you don’t like about your partner’s behavior in private.
4. Don’t ever stop your partner from doing things he/she loves.
5. Don’t ever forget that there is something called division of labour. It’s not how much one earns, but how much time is spent working which matters.
6. Even in an argument, be fair. Don’t hit below the belt. This is very important as sometimes hurtful words can simmer inside for a long time. At the same time, there is always something called forgiveness. If there is something that your partner has said to you or done to you that you find absolutely unbearable…it is possible to forgive.
7. Communicate. Whether it is a positive or a negative feeling. It is possible to tell your partner about negative traits without putting him/her down or being mean. Also, one should not assume that one’s partner can read one’s feelings. So express yourself. For example if you feel sad, say so. Don’t imagine that he or she should be sensitive enough to read your mind. Very few people have that heightened sensitivity.
8. Never forget the reasons why you married him/her. Keep these reasons foremost in your mind. Differences will always exist but one has to concentrate on the good things.
9. Do not give societal and religious matters more importance than your partner.
10. Keep in constant touch and I mean that literally. Touching each other is very very important.
The following 5 things are less critical to a relationship but nonetheless, important.
1. If you love life, there is no reason why you can’t learn something new or do something you haven’t liked much, if your partner wants you to. This applies even more strongly to those activities for which a partner is required, like dancing for example. But it also applies to say walking, or maybe playing cards…something which you might not like to do. You may never learn to love it with a passion, but there is no harm in joining your partner in his favourite activity if he wants you to…and this also means that he/she will be able to talk about it to you.
2. Treating your partner’s friends/relatives like your own helps. But yes, it is a two-way process and never blame your partner if he/she withdraws from your relatives due to the cold treatment that he/she may have received.
3. A sense of humour can help a relationship tremendously and by this I mean the ability to laugh at your mistakes and move on.
4. Love yourself in the sense that keep yourself healthy and fit. These things may be about physical attractiveness but they do matter in a marriage. Also the self confidence that comes with a good body helps tremendously in a romantic relationship.
5. I liked this write-up in which they advise that one has to be nice to one’s partner! It says:
A long-lasting, happy marriage is about knowing your partner, being supportive, and being nice.
Another piece of advise by some happily married couples can be read here. As one of the couples says, one should enter a marriage thinking that divorce is not an option. Commitment is the key word.
Related Reading: Arranged marriage vis-à-vis a love marriage – which is better?
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Why is the divorce rate increasing?
What kills a marriage quicker: A physical affair or an emotional one?
It is possible to arrange love
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