When two young (or alt-young) people build a life together, their emotional lives are entwined in an intimate way on a daily basis. Love has been defined as “giving someone the power to destroy you and then trusting them not to use it.” Relationships are an exercise in vulnerability, in intimacy, and in all of the difficulty that entails. This close interaction of hearts can lead to stresses and arguments that threaten to undermine an otherwise profound love and understanding. These tips can help you to weather the difficult moments and inject more concern and caring into your relationship.

1 – Work on Effective Communication

 

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As the years go on, a married couple may begin to speak in a sort of shorthand to make things easier. However, this short way of speaking may inhibit real understanding of what you wish to convey. It can also make it difficult to figure out what the partner is trying to say. No matter how long you’ve been married, you probably overestimate your partner’s ability to read your mind or read between the lines. Men are especially stunted in this area. Practice listening skills such as reflective listening to improve empathy. Take the time to communicate effectively, to build understanding and respect. Communicate openly, honestly, and kindly. Words that are firm in content can be soft in tone. Avoid passive-aggressive communication or indirect communication, as these cowardly tactics build animosity and frustration rather than rapport and connection.

2 – Appreciate Your Partner Daily
Take the time to actually the see the effort your partner makes each day to make the marriage and the family a workable unit. This measure can open your eyes to the small details that you may have missed that allow you to see how precious a role your partner plays and how his or her many talents enrich your life. Identify your partner’s love languages so that you are validating and appreciating them in ways that are meaningful to them. Sometimes we try to show love and validation to our partners in a way we ourselves might feel is meaningful, but those strategies bear little emotional weight to our spouse.

3 – Set Aside Time To Be A Couple

 

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Two people in a marriage may sometimes feel like they are all work and no play, and the special attraction they once shared can fall by the wayside. Make time to enjoy being a couple and having a special someone to share your inner life. Many couples do this by scheduling a “date night” that allows them to spend time together one-on-one. However, you and your partner may also share a hobby that can help bring you together as it once did.

4 – When Conflict Arises, Take A Break from the Conversation
According to a Utah divorce attorney, most divorces occur because of money problems and money fights. Often when a contentious issue arises, the impulse is to stand your ground and fight for your position. Many couples find it helpful to step back from the fight and take a day off to cool down and consider the options. A day of golf or relaxing at the spa can provide sufficient distance from the situation to allow you to consider the other person’s viewpoint.

5 –Accept Shortcomings, Acknowledge Your Own
When you are faced with the flaws in your partner, look to your own actions to acknowledge how you may have fallen short of your partner’s expectations. If you are honest about your own failures to be the best spouse, you will also be more forgiving of the flaws in the other person.

These tips can help you to build a stronger marriage that can withstand the stresses that couples experience as the years go by.