1. Great Marriages always have contentment but never have complacency. Contentment means choosing to always be thankful for what you already have whether it’s a little or a lot. Great couples have an “attitude of gratitude” for all they’ve already got, but they refuse to get on autopilot and stop dreaming new dreams together. They’re content, but never complacent. They’re thankful, but always moving forward together to reach new heights.
2. Great Marriages don’t have any secrets. Trust is the cornerstone of a healthy marriage, and strong couples have learned that secrets in marriage can be as dangerous as lies. When a husband and wife choose to communicate about everything (the good, the bad and the ugly), it brings a level of trust and intimacy that can’t be achieved any other way.
3. Great Marriages don’t have an “Exit Strategy.” Commitment leads to trust which leads to intimacy which leads to great marriages. The word “divorce” needs to be completely removed from your mind and your vocabulary if you want to create the stability necessary for a great marriage.
4. Great Marriages prioritize Fun. Laughter is the soundtrack of a great marriage. They plan and prioritize activities that will create fun and happy memories. Those activities don’t need to be expensive or elaborate, but they need to be deliberate.
5. Great Marriages keep an optimistic outlook. Happy couples face the same struggles as unhappy couples, but they choose to face those struggles with a hopeful perspective and an optimistic outlook. Always choose to see the best in each other and in the world around you.
6. Great Marriages don’t live on leftovers. We’re all sometimes guilty of giving our spouse our “leftovers” after we’ve given our best energies to our job and other demands. Vibrant couples always strive to give each other the very best of themselves.
7. Great Marriages have a foundation of faith. Couples who pray together are much more likely to stay together. I believe that God is the only “perfect” part of a marriage, so the more of Him you have in your relationship, the more perfect it will become!
–Originally published on Patheos.