If you are in a new and thriving marriage, a fulfilling partnership of many years, or evaluating whether you want to take the next step, Parker-Pope's tips from "For Better" will help you maintain, booster or rekindle the relationship bliss:
1. Celebrate the small stuff.
"It's not enough that your partner knows that you take pride in her or her accomplishments. You have to show it. Making a fuss over the small, good things that happen everyday can boost the health of your marriage."
2. Learn how to fight productively.
"The key to fighting productively is to recognize when a disagreement is going in the wrong direction and to take steps to calm things down and repair rifts."
3. Silence is not golden.
"By staying quiet and avoiding conflict when things bothered them, they had missed important opportunities to cultivate and grow their relationship."
4. Don't put negative thoughts into the universe.
"Men and women who had pondered thoughts of divorce in 1980 were nine times more likely to have gotten divorced by the end of the study."
5. Plan together.
"Couples who planned a baby's arrival or who were equally joyous at becoming parents were far more likely to maintain their marital happiness or even enjoy an increase after the baby was born."
6. Maintain a circle of friends and support.
"Strong friendships outside the marriage can take the pressure off your relationship, help you work things out away from your spouse, and ultimately protect your marriage from unnecessary stress and discord."
7. Overcompensate for mistakes.
"Do marriage math. Even when you make a mistake, tell yourself that you're going to do at least five positive things for your spouse to make up for it, and then do them. And don't wait until you bicker to turn on the charm. Nice gestures and comments go far in a marriage, they are easy to do, and they will help insulate your marriage from being damaged by the inevitable bad days."
8. Set the marriage bar high.
"Husbands and wives who hold their partners to a reasonably high standard have better marriages. If you expect a better, more satisfying relationship, you improve your chances of having one."
9. Give it a break.
"Sometimes, improving your marriage means giving it a break. Increasing your connections with family, friends and society is good for your marriage."
10. Be aware of your body language.
"Eye rolling is a painfully obvious sign of contempt, and it's a powerful predictor that your relationship is in serious trouble."
About Colleen Wachob
Colleen Wachob is passionate about yoga, eco-fashion, natural beauty, and delicious vegetarian food. She lives in Brooklyn, New York with her husband.Tags: #books, #personal growth, #relationships