Everyday Inspirations

 
 

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{angie}
Statistic show that the first year of marriage is the hardest. Often engaged couples spend so much time planning the wedding they don't take the time to prepare for married life. I'll be honest, our last year was not all sunshine and rainbows--and that's considering we planned, discussed and took our time through things beforehand. Having been married one year and seven days it can only get easier from here right? Ha! Perhaps I am not a marriage expert yet, but surviving the first year is certainly close to home. Here are my top tips for newlyweds.

Learn new things about each other. Don't tell me you already know everything about each other. I dated my husband almost seven years and amazingly I have still learned new things this year. Talk about your dreams and goals together. Discuss when/if you want to have children (though I'll be honest, I really feel this discussion should happen before you're married). If you think you know it all, you can always play the "how well do you know your spouse?" challenge like we do. Ask each other questions about yourselves and see if they know the answer. We almost always get nearly 100 percent, but it usually brings up something new the other didn't know.  
Divide tasks. Establish who is in charge of certain chores. From my experience and advice of several other couples it is better to have a certain person in charge of a chore rather than rotating, but it's up to you. Write a list with who is in charge of each chore and the frequency. That way you both know your responsibilities and can be on top of them when they need to be done.

Talk things out and be open. Arguments are normal--no one agrees all the time. Be open and honest with each other about your feelings while being respectful of your spouse's opinions. My husband and I always joke that we both majored in communication in college and yet we still speak totally different languages. Communicating clearly has always been a challenge for us, but taking the time to understanding each other's communication style is very important. Often when things blow up it isn't about what starts the fight but the way you communicate. 
 
Let go of the little things. Little things like him not putting down the toilet seat, leaving a towel on the floor, or other annoying habits will get to you. There will probably be a day when you come home after a stressful day, see the towel on the floor and the toilet seat will be up and you will lose your mind. Try to take a deep breath and remember your spouse is not doing these things to make you want to tear your hair out. Discuss your pet peeves and be mindful of your bad habits too.

Share traditions, family, and friends. One of the most exciting things about marriage is the joining of families, friends and traditions. Both of your backgrounds come together and you can incorporate them all in your new life together. Figure out how you want to divide holidays (or even better, combine like we do with our parents) and other important events in your family. Remember, your family is important, but you are a part of your spouse's family now too.

Spend quality time together. Establish a date night and find inexpensive hobbies you both love to do together regularly. For example, we both love to cook together so creating a special date night where we cook a new recipe is something we both love. Don't get stuck always sitting in front of the TV together. You need time to enjoy each other's company and spend quality time as a couple.  

Figure out your finances. Financial problems are one of the leading causes of divorce so this is a very important one. Being extra conservative in your spending the first year and having a nest egg that will cover several months of expenses is a good idea. For example, we canceled my DVR and opted not to have cable at least for our first year so we could save and determined a certain amount we want to keep in our "rainy day" fund. Create a monthly budget and figure out who is in charge of paying bills. Get on the same page with extra spending like clothing or going out to eat and keep to it. Create monthly budgets that allow each of you to have what you want.

Remember for better or worse. Don't expect perfection from your partner or married life. Living happily ever after o doesn't mean never hitting obstacles. Cherish the good and try to accept the bad as a challenge.
 
Take time for yourself. Being married does not mean being glued to each other. Make time for yourself and individual time with your friends and family. You will appreciate being together a lot more when you balance it with time apart.

Do nice things for each other. Surprise him with breakfast in bed. Buy flowers for no reason other than to say I love you. Clean the house. Don't let yourself get caught up in daily grind. Let yourself be inspired by the everyday in your relationship and spice it up.

Congratulations newlyweds! Wishing you a good first year and a long, happy marriage.
6/5/2013 05:39:12 pm

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