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3 Ways To Maintain A Marriage After 30 Years

3 Ways To Maintain A Marriage After 30 Years

It’s soon summer and the wedding seasons will be blooming. Happy couples will walk down the aisle for a commitment of a lifetime, proclaiming their vows and making promises that they will try to uphold. It’s a beautiful moment that brings people together from far away for a ceremony that is beautiful and breathtaking. Among the colorful bridesmaids and the happy new couple, you will notice a pair of old smiles in the crowd.

This is the one couple who have been holding their vows since day one, from the day they turned 30 till the day they turned 60. Some might say “happily ever after” is just a fairytale, but these couples are the ones to prove that marriage can withstand any hurricane with the right mindset and the right character.

Here are a few tips to help keep your marriage going strong as you grow old together.

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Old Couple

    1. Communicate your feelings

    Waking up every single day with the same person by your side, it takes effort to still fall in love with the same bad breath, the same small eyes, and the same quirky smile. It takes effort to continuously greet each other at the end of a tiring day and to juggle love, children, and careers together. Sometimes, it takes a ton of effort to be on each other’s side when times get rough.

    Communication, speaking about your feelings, and expressing your emotions is important. Good or bad, explaining and expressing yourself allows your better half to understand you better. This open communication, which may become hidden due to social media and society’s expectations, has been key for all the old adorable couples you watch in the park.

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      2. Ensure the importance of alone time

      Before marriage, you are your own individual. You have your own circle of friends and family, career, and hobbies where your significant other wouldn’t necessarily be present. You meet your special person every now and then and speak about how your day was and what you did. Your conversations are always interesting and entertaining.

      This concept of alone time doesn’t have to be thrown out the window the moment you take up the vow of togetherness. Many couples that have been together for years know almost everything about each other. They become one person. So, having just that 10% of individuality and alone time allows one to still retain their own personality. If you’re assuming that marriage means a chain to your better half’s leg, then you should change your perspective — real life still isn’t Cinderella.

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        3. Avoid being addicted to something

        Marriage can sometimes cause you to crave a new personality. This emotion is a slippery slope. Online gambling is one of the favorite second personalities that many couples in the UK take up. This has proven to be one of the biggest reasons why new marriages breaking apart.

        If ever this situation occurs, talk to your family members and your therapist. They will help you reflect upon yourself and allow you to avoid that slippery slope. This care from your family and others that contributes to your everyday smile is a huge gamble to lose. You should always have a therapist or a trusted advisor on speed dial to help you avoid being caught in a bad situation with no one to turn to.

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        Remember that being married to a person means more than just a happy ending. It means you’ve got to put up with their laziness and they have to put up with your annoyances. However, it also means that you get to bring out and see the best in yourselves and in each other.

        Featured photo credit: Shenkeri Chandramohan via facebook.com

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        The Gentle Art of Saying No

        The Gentle Art of Saying No

        No!

        It’s a simple fact that you can never be productive if you take on too many commitments — you simply spread yourself too thin and will not be able to get anything done, at least not well or on time.

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        But requests for your time are coming in all the time — through phone, email, IM or in person. To stay productive, and minimize stress, you have to learn the Gentle Art of Saying No — an art that many people have problems with.

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        What’s so hard about saying no? Well, to start with, it can hurt, anger or disappoint the person you’re saying “no” to, and that’s not usually a fun task. Second, if you hope to work with that person in the future, you’ll want to continue to have a good relationship with that person, and saying “no” in the wrong way can jeopardize that.

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        But it doesn’t have to be difficult or hard on your relationship. Here are the Top 10 tips for learning the Gentle Art of Saying No:

        1. Value your time. Know your commitments, and how valuable your precious time is. Then, when someone asks you to dedicate some of your time to a new commitment, you’ll know that you simply cannot do it. And tell them that: “I just can’t right now … my plate is overloaded as it is.”
        2. Know your priorities. Even if you do have some extra time (which for many of us is rare), is this new commitment really the way you want to spend that time? For myself, I know that more commitments means less time with my wife and kids, who are more important to me than anything.
        3. Practice saying no. Practice makes perfect. Saying “no” as often as you can is a great way to get better at it and more comfortable with saying the word. And sometimes, repeating the word is the only way to get a message through to extremely persistent people. When they keep insisting, just keep saying no. Eventually, they’ll get the message.
        4. Don’t apologize. A common way to start out is “I’m sorry but …” as people think that it sounds more polite. While politeness is important, apologizing just makes it sound weaker. You need to be firm, and unapologetic about guarding your time.
        5. Stop being nice. Again, it’s important to be polite, but being nice by saying yes all the time only hurts you. When you make it easy for people to grab your time (or money), they will continue to do it. But if you erect a wall, they will look for easier targets. Show them that your time is well guarded by being firm and turning down as many requests (that are not on your top priority list) as possible.
        6. Say no to your boss. Sometimes we feel that we have to say yes to our boss — they’re our boss, right? And if we say “no” then we look like we can’t handle the work — at least, that’s the common reasoning. But in fact, it’s the opposite — explain to your boss that by taking on too many commitments, you are weakening your productivity and jeopardizing your existing commitments. If your boss insists that you take on the project, go over your project or task list and ask him/her to re-prioritize, explaining that there’s only so much you can take on at one time.
        7. Pre-empting. It’s often much easier to pre-empt requests than to say “no” to them after the request has been made. If you know that requests are likely to be made, perhaps in a meeting, just say to everyone as soon as you come into the meeting, “Look guys, just to let you know, my week is booked full with some urgent projects and I won’t be able to take on any new requests.”
        8. Get back to you. Instead of providing an answer then and there, it’s often better to tell the person you’ll give their request some thought and get back to them. This will allow you to give it some consideration, and check your commitments and priorities. Then, if you can’t take on the request, simply tell them: “After giving this some thought, and checking my commitments, I won’t be able to accommodate the request at this time.” At least you gave it some consideration.
        9. Maybe later. If this is an option that you’d like to keep open, instead of just shutting the door on the person, it’s often better to just say, “This sounds like an interesting opportunity, but I just don’t have the time at the moment. Perhaps you could check back with me in [give a time frame].” Next time, when they check back with you, you might have some free time on your hands.
        10. It’s not you, it’s me. This classic dating rejection can work in other situations. Don’t be insincere about it, though. Often the person or project is a good one, but it’s just not right for you, at least not at this time. Simply say so — you can compliment the idea, the project, the person, the organization … but say that it’s not the right fit, or it’s not what you’re looking for at this time. Only say this if it’s true — people can sense insincerity.

        Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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