We will review the five essential qualities of a great marriage

Soul Mates – We will review the five essential qualities of a great marriage. We will remind you how to appreciate your past together, how to make the most of your daily life together, and how to work to- ward an extraordinary future together! You married your partner full of hope, enthusiasm, and love. In order to nurture your relationship fully, you need to make use of the tools in this book. Give your soul mate love, care, and attention and your marriage will thrive and grow.

➤ Making your marriage GREAT ➤ Treasuring your past ➤ Cherishing every moment
➤ Looking forward to tomorrow

Having a GREAT Marriage

As we discussed at the beginning of the book, there are certain qualities that are part of every great marriage. The first letters of these five qualities spell the word “GREAT.” Let’s review these qualities.

“G” Is for Good Communication

Communicating well with your spouse is absolutely crucial to having a great marriage. Communication is the way you let your spouse know what you are feeling and what you need from him or her. When you listen carefully, you are showing your spouse how important he or she is to you. When you talk with each other, make sure you give each other your undivided attention, make eye contact, and use good timing. If you and your spouse communicate well, you will be in the best position to fully appreciate each other and solve your differences.

“R” Is for Real Partnership

A marriage is a partnership and takes teamwork. When you are part of a team, the success of the team is always more important than your individual success. Make sure you support each other and avoid blaming each other when things go wrong. Take time to work out your differences together. Remember that it’s more important to develop a solution than to prove a point or to win an argument. Your partnership is your first priority.

“E” Is for Effort

Effort is what makes a relationship work. You cannot have a good marriage without putting in the time and energy to make it work. Many people think a good marriage should not take a lot of energy. Nothing is further from the truth! A great relationship is great be- cause both people put in their complete effort to make it work. Make sure to give your marriage the time and energy that it deserves. Investing regularly and consis- tently in your marriage will be the best investment you will make in your entire life!

“A” Is for Adaptability

Being flexible is so important in a marriage. You know by now that things do not al- ways turn out as you planned. The fuller your life is, the more things can go wrong! Perhaps the restaurant that you had your heart set on going to Saturday night is booked. Or maybe your spouse has no interest in saving money for the car of your dreams. If you figure out ways to make the best of a situation, then you will be a hap- pier, more satisfied person, and you will have a better marriage, too!

“T” Is for Total Commitment

Remember that you need to stay committed to your relationship through good times as well as bad. When you are 100 percent committed to your marriage, it will be much easier to be there for your spouse. If you feel like walking out of your marriage whenever things get tough, you will be undermining your relationship. But if you al- ways stand by your spouse through thick and thin, you will be making it clear that you are completely committed to him or her. When both of you are committed to each other, you will give each other a wonderful sense of security.

Treasuring Your Past

You are creating a past from the moment your relationship starts. The memories you create between the two of you are yours and yours alone. When you are going through a difficult time with your spouse, think about some wonderful memories that the two of you share. Your past can also be your best teacher. You can use the past to learn from your mistakes and do things differently now and in the future.

Relive Fun Times

One of the best ways to relive fun times is to do things that help you remember them. The following are some ideas to bring back your wonderful memories:

  • ➤  Look through your photo album together.
  • ➤  Listen to music you danced to when you were first dating.
  • ➤  Visit old friends you have not seen in a while.
  • ➤  Have dinner at the restaurant you went to on your first date.
  • ➤  Go back to a special vacation spot.
  • ➤  Rent a movie you enjoyed together when you were first married.
  • ➤  Take a second honeymoon and stay in the same room in the same hotel, if possible.
  • ➤  Visit the place where the two of you met. Remembering the Hard Times, Too

    Many people try to forget the difficult times in their lives. For instance, they might not want to re- member an illness they suffered or a huge disagree- ment they had with their spouse. It feels painful, and people think it’s best to push it aside. Actually, it can be a source of strength and give you a feeling of triumph to know that you successfully overcame a difficult challenge.

Cherishing Every Moment

Your marriage will be stronger if you take the time to enjoy the intimate things in your daily lives. Make sure that you have fun together, do nice things for each other, and treat each other with kindness. If you do, you will enjoy yourselves more and create good memories in the process.

Have Fun Together

Having fun together is one of the most important parts of your marriage. Your adult life as a married couple is filled with responsibility. The two of you deserve to have fun together. Every single week you and your spouse should spend fun time together. Schedule it on your calendar, along with all of your other appointments.

Make Each Day Count

It’s so important to make each day count with your spouse. Most people let days, weeks, or even months go by without letting their partner know how important he or she is to them. That won’t happen to you if you make a point of doing one nice thing a day for your spouse. Whether it’s something small, such as preparing a special meal, or something large, such as planning a surprise vacation together, you will be ac- knowledging the importance of your relationship on a regular basis. Even a small thing such as calling from work and saying “I love you,” can make his or her day special.

Don’t Take Each Other for Granted

Many people take their spouse for granted. Because they know that their partner will always be there for them, they don’t always take the time or make the effort to be as kind and thoughtful as they could be. But you can make your marriage better than that! If you treat your spouse with kindness all of the time, your relationship will be better than you ever dreamed!

Looking Forward to Tomorrow

When you are married, you have the special opportunity to look toward the future with anticipation. Sometimes that involves making day-to-day plans, and other times it involves planning something really wonderful for two years from now.

Take time to do the following:

➤ Plan ahead. ➤ Discuss your goals. ➤ Anticipate together.

When you share your life with somebody, there are many things that require you to think ahead. You need to schedule fun activities together, make a budget, anticipate potential difficulties, and decide where to go on vacation. Make sure you set aside time every month for planning these things.

You and your spouse have family, personal, and financial goals that you should discuss with each other. It’s worthwhile to talk about your goals once or twice a year to make sure that you are doing things today to help you reach your goals. Talking with each other about your goals can help you clarify what they are.

Think Twice

Don’t forget to plan ahead for your big goals, such as taking a special vacation or buying a car or a house. Working together toward a particular goal can be extremely satisfying.

There are so many things that you and your spouse have to look forward to, from cel- ebrating your anniversary to enjoying each other’s company during the leisure of your retirement. If you have children, you can also look forward to getting pleasure from their accomplishments. Talk about the events and experiences that you are look- ing forward to with your spouse. Remember that anticipation is half the fun!

Counting Your Blessings

Your marriage has the potential to be the absolutely best part of your life. If you have begun to implement the ideas from this book, you probably feel closer to your spouse already! Just remember to always communicate with your spouse, be real partners in life, put time and energy into your relationship, be flexible, and commit one hundred percent to your marriage.

Being married is truly a wonderful blessing. You have memories to enjoy and help you through difficult times. You have the chance to enjoy your relationship every day. And you also have the chance to look forward to fun things in the future. Always remember to count your blessings and make the effort to maintain a stable, healthy relationship. Then you will always be able to look over at your spouse and say, “I am the luckiest person in the world to have you in my life!”

The Least You Need to Know

  • ➤  There are five necessary qualities to every great marriage: good communica- tion, real partnership, effort, adaptability, and total commitment. Make sure you contribute all five of them to your marriage.
  • ➤  Shared memories are an important part of a marriage. Also, your memories of difficult times can serve as a source of strength.
  • ➤  Make the most out of your day-to-day life with your spouse. Do nice things for each other, and treat each other with kindness.
  • ➤  You have your whole future together to look forward to. Make the most of it by planning ahead and setting goals for yourselves.
  • ➤  Having a fulfilling marriage is one of the most wonderful blessings in the world!