Iʼve been where you are. I remember all the planning, thought, and effort that went into making sure the big day would go well, and that Iʼd survive to tell about it. My big day wasnʼt my wedding … it was the day after the wedding & honeymoon when I realized that I was in a relationship that I wanted to last a lifetime. Now that’s big!
While there is no conclusive proof to validate nor thwart this statistic, I once read that couples spend an average of 200 hours planning for the wedding compared to 3 hours preparing for the marriage. How tragic! These polarizing numbers reveal two things: 1) the anxiety of a beautiful & memorable ceremony being pulled off, and 2) the underestimation of what married life is like after the pomp of the ceremony, the sizzle of the honeymoon, and the fun-filled first weeks of being a married couple. Below I will reveal two key things couples should do to prepare for the big day and realize theyʼre in a relationship they want to last a lifetime.
1. Be committed to commitment.
Our constantly evolving culture has forever altered the idea of commitment. To commit to something or something used to carry great significance. It meant to be involved – through
joy and pain – until the designated end. Our short-term, fast-paced world has turned the meaning of commitment from “You can count on me until the end” into “You can count on me until I become uncomfortable, dissatisfied, or disinterested. As a marriage vet, let me assure you that the day is going to come when you experience some level of discomfort, dissatisfaction, and disinterest in your marriage. It is at the time that you’re going to have to make a decision to honor your vows and your mate by staying being committed. While there’s no best one-way to honor your commitment to your spouse, one thing you can do is to redo the acts you practiced as a newlywed or a dating couple. Sincerely repeating the actions that caused your emotions to soar will transport you and your spouse back to a place of emotional intimacy, and will cause you to double-down on your efforts to be committed to you can make your marriage last a lifetime.
Making a list of why you’re marrying your partner can serve as a memorial to you when the marriage runs into inevitably challenging times. In the midst of disappointment and heartache, it’s very easy to concentrate on the negative, and be blinded to your mate’s positive qualities. To jog your memory, it’s best to record the good points when everything is going well in the relationship. Reviewing the list in good times and bad will set your mind positively regarding your spouse, and will automatically lead to positive actions. It’s very hard to remain mad at someone when you’re routinely reminding yourself of why you love and appreciate them so much. This exercise works, and will certainly help you prepare for the big day when you realize you’re in a relationship you want to last a lifetime.
Getting married is great, but staying married is better. To ensure your marriage is built to last, start preparing now for the big day the novelty of marriage dissipates, and you realize that you’re going to have to be fully engaged to make sure your marriage works.