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20 Essential Tips for Building a Happy, Successful Marriage That Lasts

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Getting married marks the beginning of an incredible journey with your life partner. However, amid the joy and passion of newlywed days, challenges inevitably emerge as you learn to navigate life together. It takes constant effort and care from both spouses to maintain a healthy, deeply fulfilling, successful marriage for the long haul. If you want to enjoy lasting love, companionship, and happiness with your partner, intentionally nurture your bond each day. 

Here are 20 essential tips for creating a successful, lifelong marriage.

1. Communicate Openly and Honestly

The foundation of every strong and successful marriage is open, honest communication. Set aside at least 15-30 focused minutes daily to talk with your spouse without distractions. Listen attentively, express your feelings and perspectives calmly using “I” statements, and try your best to validate each other’s point of view. Discuss challenges, needs, and goals early before problems worsen. Silence and bottling up hurts breeds resentment, while good communication fosters intimacy, empathy, and conflict resolution.

2. Stay Affectionate

Don’t reserve affection only for special occasions. Regularly express love for your partner through both physical touch and words. Exchange hugs, kisses, hand-holding, massages, and verbal expressions like “I love you.” Small acts of affection performed daily strengthen emotional bonds between spouses by making you both feel cherished.

3. Give Sincere Appreciation and Praise

Get in the daily habit of expressing genuine appreciation and praise for your partner. Thank them sincerely for their kind acts, big and small. Celebrate shared achievements and milestones together. Share positive memories that exemplify your love and friendship. Focusing on the good nurtures fondness and goodwill between spouses.

4. Maintain Playfulness and Humor

Don’t lose your sense of fun and laughter as life’s responsibilities weigh you down. Injecting playfulness, humor, and lighthearted enjoyment keeps a successful marriage joyful. Share silly jokes and funny stories each day. Be spontaneous sometimes. Have pillow fights, dance parties, game nights, or adventure dates. Laughter relieves stress and brings out your youthful, vibrant spirits.

5. Foster Friendship

Spouses who also share a strong bond of friendship and common interests report much happier marriages. Regularly do activities you both love, like hiking, cooking, sports, travel, artistic hobbies, volunteering, etc. Have weekly date nights with no kids or technology to engage in great conversations that strengthen friendships.

6. Nurture Sexual and Physical Intimacy

A satisfying sex life and physical intimacy are vital for keeping passion alive and feeling loved, connected, and fulfilled as a couple. Make intimacy a priority by flirting, trying new sexual activities, going on romantic getaways, giving massages, etc. Respond sensitively to each other’s needs.

7. Allow Personal Space Too

While togetherness is important, allowing each other space to pursue individual interests prevents smothering your partner. Support each other in exploring separate hobbies, friendships, career aspirations, personal growth, etc. This helps you appreciate and respect each other’s differences.

8. Manage Conflict Constructively

Disagreements are inevitable in marriage, but how you argue matters immensely. Take a break if tensions rise to cool off. When ready, come back to discuss the conflict calmly using “I feel” statements, listening without interrupting, and validating each other’s perspective. Look for win-win compromises. Resolving conflicts in a caring, constructive way prevents resentment.

9. Practice Kindness and Generosity

Go out of your way to do small acts of service and kindness for your partner. Make their coffee in the morning, bring home flowers, cook their favorite meal after a bad day, take over chores when they’re stressed, etc. Thoughtfulness and generosity keep love and gratitude flowing between spouses.

10. Share Meaningful Experiences

Sharing meaningful experiences and making memories together bonds you tighter as a couple. Start new holiday traditions, travel somewhere new yearly, train for a charity race, renovate a house, or achieve a big goal together, like starting a business. Shared times enrich your history.

11. Support Each Other’s Growth

Support your partner in pursuing continuous personal growth to prevent stagnation. Do marriage enrichment workshops or counseling even when things are good to build skills. Read relationship books together and discuss ideas. Pursue your own growth through hobbies, spirituality, education, career advancement, etc. Growth expands your marriage.

12. Focus on the Positive

During conflicts, it’s easy only to see your partner’s flaws. Counteract this by intentionally focusing on the positives in your spouse and relationship during bad times. Recall beautiful memories, express gratitude for their support, admire their strength of character, etc. This boosts perspective and optimism.

13. Have Shared Fun and Laughter

Don’t underestimate the bonding power of shared fun and laughter. Watch comedy shows and funny YouTube videos together. Share entertaining stories from your day over dinner. Laugh and be goofy together often. Humor relieves stress and makes marriage much more enjoyable.

Having fun together
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14. Renew Your Commitment

On anniversaries or when facing trials, reaffirm your devotion by exchanging vows, doing a recommitment ceremony, or reviewing your original wedding vows together. Remembering why you married and envisioning a future together rekindles your motivation to cherish your marriage in the present.

15. Embrace Forgiveness

No spouse is perfect; partners inevitably hurt or disappoint each other sometimes. When misunderstandings occur, choose forgiveness over resentment. See their positive intent, acknowledge your own faults, let go of anger, and move forward with a clean slate. Quick forgiveness preserves love.

16. Have Shared Dreams and Goals

Having shared hopes, dreams, and goals bonds spouses through a sense of purpose. Discuss your individual and mutual aspirations. Brainstorm and make plans to achieve them together, whether it’s starting a family, succeeding in careers, traveling more, or getting involved in your community. Shared visions motivate and unite you.

17. Keep Growing Spiritually

For couples who value faith, growing spiritually together through prayer, discussion, studying meaningful texts, serving others, etc., can deepen intimacy and provide guidance during trials. Shared practices remind spouses of sacred purposes like love and forgiveness.

18. Compliment Each Other Daily

Get in the consistent habit of offering each other sincere compliments to uplift and inspire one another. Praise your partner’s appearance, talents, accomplishments, character strengths, and growth. Sincere compliments make your spouse feel loved, boost confidence and encourage their personal development.

19. Seek Input from Others When Needed

If you’re facing communication issues, intimacy troubles, frequent conflicts, or growing distance, don’t hesitate to seek outside support. Talk to trusted relatives, friends, or faith leaders who know you as a couple. Additionally, meet with a therapist or counselor to gain constructive tools and perspective for improving your partnership.

20. Keep Dating and Having Fun Together

Don’t let your relationship become boring or stale over the years. Keep dating! Flirt, try new activities together, go on romantic mini-getaways, visit new places in your city, and try couples adventure challenges together. Staying playful and having fun together rejuvenates your marriage.

Dating and having fun
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In Conclusion

A happy, lifelong successful marriage requires consistent mutual care, effort, and commitment from both partners. By applying these tips for nurturing intimacy, friendship, playfulness, good communication, spiritual growth, and more in your relationship, you can build a marriage that stands the test of time. Invest daily in your partnership, practice forgiveness quickly, seek help when required, and always remember your love. If you make your marriage a priority, it will continue to bring you joy and fulfillment for many years to come. With the right keys to success and more helpful advice from sites like Married Advice, your love can go the distance.

Featured Image by Dorin Budeanu from Pixabay