Married Life Stinks? Here Are The Secrets To A Happy Marriage.

A long, successful, happy marriage is the goal of every bride and groom. 

However, a happy marriage doesn't just happen: it must be created and nurtured. It takes work.

Below are ideas, tips and suggestions to refresh your happy marriage toolbox. If you feel your marriage is in trouble, no time like the present to get started!

There might be a few secrets for a happy marriage that you haven't tried yet.

To improve upon or help save your marriage - click here.

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Replies (8)
    • Learn how to argue.

      Avoiding disagreements entirely usually carries unhealthy consequences. Both partners may simply repress certain angers, with neither one getting what they need out of the relationship. Learn to disagree without getting into an all-out argument.

      • When you disagree, avoid saying hurtful things.
      • If things are getting heated, take a break for a while and come back to the conversation when emotions aren't running as high.
      • Use phrases such as "I feel upset when you do this..." instead of lashing out with name calling or accusing your partner of never doing anything right.

      The presence of arguing in a relationship doesn't affect its success as much as how a couple argues. One psychologist claims a 95% success rate for predicting which relationships would fail just by listening to an argument for five minutes!

      • The four factors that make all the difference when you argue are: contemptdefensivenesscriticism, and withdrawing. Avoid these behaviors and your marriage is more likely to survive.

      Pick your battles.

      Sometimes fights are inevitable because you're two different human beings with two sets of opinions. Determine whether your feelings are truly worth fighting for and where you can reach a compromise. Perhaps you've gotten into a petty little fight about something unimportant. Learn from that mistake to avoid that unhappiness in the future.

      You can complain, but avoid criticizing.

      If your partner's behavior is bothering you, it's okay to point it out and ask them to stop. But, avoid attacking your partner. You can say, "It drives me crazy when you throw your dirty socks all over the floor." But avoid saying, "You're such a slob. What's your problem?"

      Most people can accept that they might be doing something bothersome. However, that's different from being personally attacked.

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      • Learn how to listen!

        A spouse always has to deal with a lot of venting. This is because you're likely best friends and you should be there for each other in good times and bad. If your partner has had a bad day, be there to listen to them. Simply knowing how to listen can make your relationship grow stronger.

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        • Work on communication.

          Some couples will naturally communicate well, and others won't. If you feel that you're not connecting, make an effort to improve the lines of communication. Take time out of each day to really connect with your partner. Talk about feelings and issues instead of just turning on the TV.

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          • Step outside yourself.

            It's a good idea to consider what it's like to walk a mile in your partner's shoes. If you run into a conflict or disagreement, instead of concentrating solely on how you're feeling, consider your partner's feelings first.

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            • Become good at saying "I'm sorry."

              Despite your best efforts, you'll make mistakes in your marriage. Studies have shown that the people slowest to apologize are the ones most likely to stay single or get divorced.

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              • Make your relationship fun.

                An important aspect of lasting relationships is the capacity to enjoy each others company.

                • Be silly, tell jokes, and use self-deprecating humor once in a while. Have fun when you're around each other.

                Laugh together.

                Remember the good times you've shared. Talk about and relive them. Reminiscing about fun times helps keep couples together.

                Talk about plans for activities you both want to do in the future.

                Sharing ideas and setting goals together bring you closer together and ensure you stay there - together.

                • It's especially fun to plan to go out to lunch on Saturday to make decisions about your vacation plans and figure out together what you want to do.
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                • Make brief contact with your spouse throughout the day.

                  It takes only a few seconds to let your partner know you're thinking of them.

                  • Place a two or three minute call to your spouse during your morning break. 
                  • Send a text message. Text messages are particularly fun because you can make a statement, ask a question, or make a plan simply by tapping in a quick message. For example, you could text, "Can't wait to get home tonight," "I'm cooking your favorite for dinner," or "I love you!" 
                  • Send a quick email to just say "Hi."
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                  • Be adventurous.

                    Learn something new together. When you have adventure, your relationship feels fresh and exciting. Try these ideas or develop your own based on your mutual interests:

                    • Take a ballroom, hip-hop, or country-western dancing class.
                    • Go skydiving.
                    • Try an exotic restaurant and order something you've never eaten before.
                    • Change your appearance from time to time, just to make it interesting. Get a new haircut or color. Wear a different style of clothing.

                    You get the idea. Do something different!

                    Occasional surprises work wonders. For example, plan a surprise weekend getaway, a romantic dinner at home, or flowers just to say, "I love you."

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