How to Have a Happy Marriage

45 Longtime Couples Share the Marriage Tip That's Kept Them Together
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Below, she shared seven small but significant gestures you can incorporate in your day-to-day life. When you first see your spouse, instead of having a negative or even neutral interaction, greet them with a positive statement, Bush said.

When you’re married to your best friend:

The key is to be positive and loving. You might touch their hand or arm, or your legs might touch, she said. Many marriages, Bush said, suffer from chronic under-appreciation. She suggested couples end the day by thanking each other for one small act they did that day. So instead of a request, it comes out as an attack. Could you spend some time with me?

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Everybody wants to have a happy marriage. Unfortunately, on average, marriages get less happy with time. You know this must be true. The honeymoon period in most marriages has a shelf life. But does that mean you can't bring back those fluttery butterfly feelings of excitement.

Synch your breath together for one minute. You might be in a miserable mood or downright exhausted. But try it anyway. She likened it to feeling depressed. During an argument, you eventually reach a point where the best thing is just to walk away and cool off. If you keep pushing, it leads to an explosion. Everyone, even our friends, know date night is Friday and that date night cannot be disturbed.

This gives us a chance to reset whatever madness happened during the week and there is always plenty! This has become the glue that keeps us together. But it's important to remain an individual as much as you are a sum of the equation. After all, that's what attracted your spouse to you to begin with!

This gives each of us a chance to regroup and think and get some of our own things done. Then when we're together, we can really focus on each other. Works for us! And never say unkind things about him behind his back. Instead, recognize what's really bothering you and try not to take it out on them. But find plenty of opportunities to laugh together. Don't take life too seriously; challenges seem much more manageable when you have a partner to laugh with.

Small Things Often

I have tried everything I could think of. It will set your heart and relationship free. Wise couples realize that a nice home, car, or retirement account may appear nice to have, but they do not make a successful marriage. Met in Paris. If instead you 'lean in' to the uncomfortable feelings, to the unknown and your own vulnerability, and meet your partner, you can actually strengthen your relationship through the struggles you face together. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. It keeps you from developing the trust or intimacy of a good marriage," says Mindy Utay , psychotherapist and marriage counselor.

This means sitting down face to face and taking turns listening, understanding, and re-stating until both of you know you understand and are understood. If an issue is too difficult, you can postpone, but the person who asks for a rain check is the one responsible for deciding when the issue will be picked up again. Nothing builds trust and breaks down the me-versus-you thinking better.

You should not expect less than happiness

We look at each other as a team. I know his heart.

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I know he supports me. We learned early on in our marriage that there has to be room for all three of us — me, my husband, and my body pillow. After you've been married for many, many years, that passionate kiss when your partner walks in the door can easily morph into a peck on the check that can then morph into an inability even to look up from your computer.

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Over the course of my year marriage, there are times when I've felt my own husband and I were starting to become so familiar with each other that we were settling into a stultifying -- albeit comfortable -- routine. But there's a real danger in that.

How To Have A Happy Marriage

Studies show that nearly half of men who have cheated say it was because of emotional dissatisfaction -- and not sex. When men don't feel connected or appreciated by their wives, they are vulnerable to the advances of any attractive woman who casts a lustful glance their way. And fellows, it works the other way as well. In his film "Annie Hall," Woody Allen charged that "a relationship is like a shark. It has to constantly move forward or it dies.

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I've been guilty of keeping score, constantly calculating who had done what. If you are so inclined, keep score of all the positive things your partner does in a day -- and then thank them. Hopefully they'll get the hint and do the same for you.

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If you have maxed out a credit card or two and find yourself hiding the bills each month, you can bet it's going to come back to bite you. Eventually, whether you're applying for a home loan or simply talking about the costs of summer vacation, these kinds of money issues will either be brought to light by a credit report or by the simple fact you can't afford a trip away.

Although infidelity usually happens in bed, it also can happen with money. And it will be a tough road gaining back your spouse's trust if you've lied about overspending.

45 Longtime Couples Share the Marriage Tip That's Kept Them Together

Along that same vein, if you feel you aren't connecting with your partner the way you used to, you need to say something -- now. I've learned this lesson the hard way. I once let communication issues fester for months on end, failing to verbalize my displeasure, and my husband and I wound up in marriage counseling for nearly a year. It took a third party -- and a real investment on our part -- to get us back on track. If I had not kept telling myself that things would get better on their own, we might not have reached what I call the danger zone.

With many years and a few kids under your belt, it's easy to let your appearance slide. Think about when you first met your partner. Would you have walked around in stained sweatpants and without brushing your teeth? My guess is no. I'm not saying you have to look like Julianne Moore every time you settle in for a night of TV.

Sometimes my husband will say "wow, you look nice" as I'm walking out the door for a girls' night out. At least pay your spouse the same courtesy you do your friends by fixing yourself up for him or her every once in awhile. I've been going on girls' trips for as long as I've been married. Yes, I love traipsing off with my spouse and three kids.

Want a happy marriage? Do THIS every day - Family Feud

But these weekends away with friends are also important. Swapping stories with others and enjoying new experiences make me -- I hope -- a more interesting person for my spouse to be around. When Katie Couric asked Barbra Streisand the secret to her happy year marriage to James Brolin, she replied "time apart. There are many things you should never say to a longtime spouse, the first being: "Don't you think our new neighbor is attractive? It's also never a good idea to start a sentence with: "You know it's always been your problem that We hopefully all have a pretty good sense of ourselves at this point and having someone you love point out a failing in this way does little to engender a loving relationship.

Neither of these is true. If you start a sentence with these words your mate is certain to shut down or start a fight. Stop for a minute and think about what you really mean to say -- and then say that instead.