What Are the Most Vital Components of a Successful Marriage?

Ah, love. For most of us, we can recall those beginning feelings of love, when someone sweeps us off our feet and captures our heart with their laugh, smile, etc. Some say that falling in love is easy, it’s maintaining it that takes work. This is true – love and intimacy only continue to grow as a couple works together to create a meaningful bond each and everyday of their lives. Ideally, couples who work on their mental, physical, and spiritual wellness are the ones that are truly able to flourish because they are taking the time to better themselves as individuals and together as a couple. A successful marriage is not one of perfection, but one of many errors – just two people willing to work together through them.

A 2016 survey conducted by the Pew Research Center found that 56% of married U.S. adults believe that sharing household chores is important. In addition to this, 64% ranked having shared interests, 61% ranked having a satisfying sexual relationship, 43% listed having children, and 42% listed having adequate income. If you were to take these specific elements and ensure they’re prominent in your marriage, you may still not find your marriage to be successful. The reality is that while there are many physical things you can do to help your marriage, sharing chores isn’t going to build you that connection – it isn’t going to establish a lifelong bond, and it certainly isn’t going to help you work through whatever life throws at you both.

Time Magazine identifies 7 key points that many successful marriages have:

  • Celebrate good news – too often we focus on the negative; make it a point to really celebrate the good stuff, even the seemingly insignificant things
  • Have a ratio of good times to bad times, 5:1 – for each “bad” event you have in your marriage, you must top it off with 5 good times; this is said to help keep marriages at a great level
  • Keep your standards high – those who expect more, often get more; don’t slack on each other. Dress up. Go out on dates. Expect to be treated with respect, and give respect. It all goes both ways!
  • Stay close to family and friends – It’s great to find support in one another, but try to find support in friends and family, too. This will help your marriage stay well-rounded.
  • Don’t expect your spouse to make you happy – you should rely on your own happiness, not your partner
  • Have more sex – with sex comes a lot of physical and emotional benefits, which can bring you both closer together (physically and emotionally!)
  • Excitement – keep the excitement ramped up in your relationship by continuously doing new things together. Skip the same old routine, and try something new.

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