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8 Similes Summing Up What Marriage Is Actually Like

8 Similes Summing Up What Marriage Is Actually Like

At one point in our lives, we thought marriage was the happy ending. We all watched the movies, read the books and believed that once we found out one true love, that was it. Eventually we realized that we are living real life and there isn’t a storybook ending that solves all your problems. Marriage is just the beginning of two people’s lives together.

1. “Marriage is like fine wine, if tended to properly, it gets better with age.”

Plain and simple, you can have a good marriage but it will take time and effort to make it better with age. Either the two of you can grow together and stronger as a couple or further apart. Just look at the process of how wine is made. It is quite a bit of effort to even get it to the form that flows freely from the bottle into your cup of happiness, and a little more patience and time to get fine wine.

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2. “A marriage is like a house. When a light bulb burns out, you don’t just go and buy another house. You change the light bulb”

You all know someone like this, don’t lie. They have had twenty seven marriages and sign prenups like they sign a receipt for a purchase over twenty five dollars. Some people really don’t understand the sanctity of marriage. It is something that you two are promising to each other for an eternity. Sure, not everyone is good for each other but that doesn’t mean you have to just leave the first sign of trouble. Figure out which type of light bulb needs to be replaced (or which problem needs to be fixed) and take time to search for the solution to make that part of the house light up again.

3. “Marriage is like music. Both are playing different instruments and different parts, but as long as you’re playing from the same sheet music, you can create something beautiful.”

Everyone is different and unique in their own way. That is what is so beautiful about marriage, you both can bring so much to the table and use it. As a couple, you learn each other’s hobby (and if you’re competitive, you get good at it), see solutions to problems from a different view, and learn that though you two are individuals, your hearts and minds are in sync… most of the time.

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4. “Marriage without friendship is like a bird without wings.”

When you are married, your spouse is your best friend. It may sound cliche to say, and I know it’s very cheesy, but it is completely true. In order to have a marriage work, you need to trust them with your life. That means your secrets, your heartaches, your anxiety and your joy. Your spouse is the first person you call when you need to share some good news, when you need a shoulder to cry on, and a person that will make food runs with you at three in the morning just for fun (although that last option may change with age).

5. “Being married is like having a best friend that doesn’t remember anything you say.”

In addition to the friendship thing, you will have someone that you can tell your stories to over and over again because most likely, they forget some details, or are pretending to. You have done it before, be honest. You have all have responded, “Oh no, you didn’t tell me that story,” because you know your spouse loves telling it.

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6. “Marriage is like a garden, it takes time to grow but the harvest is rich unto those who patiently and tenderly care for the ground.”

This plays again into putting work into it. You need to have adventures together and put effort into creating the story of your lives together. What else are you going to be talking about on your front porch drinking iced tea when you’re old? As a married couple, vacations, last minute weekend trips, or simply getting lost is what builds your vault of stories and lessons for you to pass down.

7. “Marriage without struggle is like an unfired clay pot. It is easily made, but it will not stand the test of time.”

Every marriage is going to have their bumps and dead ends. You both need to find out how to turn yourselves back around and keep going. The problems that come with marriage are there to make sure you two are able to work together as a couple through it so when you eventually do decide to create little minions, you have something to let them know you have been through it. Don’t think they won’t be calling you either. Everyone calls their parents for help, no matter what age.

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8. “Marriage is like a game of chess, except the board is flowing water, the pieces are made of smoke and no move you make will have any effect on the outcome.”

With all that being said, no matter how many tips and tricks you are given to make your marriage work, it really is different for every couple. There is not a set of rules or a right way of creating the perfect marriage because it doesn’t exist. Tips for you may not work like they did for your mom. The best you can do is just take in the knowledge and keep it in your vault. Live your lives together, take the punches as they come, and stop to enjoy the sunshine.

Featured photo credit: Bride and Groom with pink pastel bouquet/ Faith via flickr.com

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Margielyn Musser

Event And Volunteer Coordinator / World Traveler

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Last Updated on May 21, 2019

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

Example 1

You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

Example 2

You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

Example 3

You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

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The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

Example 4

You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

  • Understand your own communication style
  • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
  • Communicate with precision and care
  • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

1. Understand Your Communication Style

To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

2. Learn Others Communication Styles

Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

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If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

“How do you prefer to receive information?”

This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

3. Exercise Precision and Care

A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

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In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

“Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

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It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

The Bottom Line

When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

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Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

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