"Marriage is 50/50."
"Don't go to sleep angry."
"Say 'I love you' every day."
These are only a few of the stereotypical pieces of marriage advice most couples hear before and throughout marriage. Although they are well-intentioned, they are used so much they can go in one ear and pass right out the other. In fact, most of the advice either seems downright cliché or just not applicable to you and your spouse.
However, here are 15 different pieces of marriage advice that are definitely more original and will actually do what advice is meant to do: help.
1. Assume the other person always has the best intentions
This is good advice for everyone but especially for people who are married.
If you spend your days thinking your husband or wife never intentionally forgot to take out the trash or do the dishes, there will probably be less of a temptation to get frustrated. And in most cases you will be right anyways.
Your spouse loves you and he/she would never intentionally hurt you, so you can both cut each other a little slack.
2. Fighting over money is useless because there will never be enough
Money, money, money. When you are married, especially when you are a newlywed, there never seems to be enough of it. Because of this, it is honestly a waste of time and emotion for you and your spouse to argue over money.
Obviously, if your spouse is spending uncontrollably and not telling you about it, that needs to be stopped and talked about. In most other cases, just be open and honest about your spending habits and create a budget and stick to it. Unexpected expenses will pop up. Money will be tight. But, hey, that is why you have each other to lean on.
3. Always have unity, fidelity, respect and mutual support
This is all of the best marriage advice combined, which is why it's important to know.
Having these 4 qualities ever present in your marriage will not only strengthen your relationship but also help it to withstand anything life may decide to throw your way.
4. True marriage is constant concern and love for your spouse
Marriage isn't all romance, but don't get me wrong-romance is a very important part of it. However, we all know that not every moment in marriage will be a romantic one.
Sometimes when you feel least romantic is when it is most important to be thinking of ways you can help or serve your spouse with love. Doing this consistently and constantly will make both of you a lot happier.
5. Appreciate the bad times as much as the good
To some, this may seem like a strange statement and not-so-good advice. Shouldn't a successful marriage always have good times and not any bad?
In a fairy tale land this may be true, but here in the real world marriage isn't always "happily ever after," and that's perfectly okay. In fact, hardships can be the building blocks that strengthen your marriage.
Appreciate the bad or difficult parts of marriage with your spouse because these can bring you closer and make you realize why you wanted this person forever by your side in the first place.
6. Don't assume your spouse knows how much you love him/her
Saying I love you to your spouse as often as possible it the best piece of advice that could ever be given.
Hopefully your partner does know how much you love him/her without you having to say it, but even if that's true, say it anyways. Everyone wants to hear they are loved; especially by the people they love the most.
7. Your spouse is a mirror
Justin Timberlake-who is adorably married, by the way-has it right in "Mirrors" when he sings, " I can't ever change without you, you reflect me, I love that about you." While this song is excellent with a beautiful message about his wife, it also tells a very important piece of advice.
There are times when your husband or wife may do something or have some sort of habit that seems to bother you, but the reality is that the surprising reason it may bother you so much is deep down you know this is something you do.
Understanding this makes it easier to be more patient and loving with your spouse and to communicate more effectively how you both can improve and change.
8. Sometimes you have to take turns being strong when one of you is weak
You and your husband or wife are strong people. However, there will be times when you don't feel like the strong one, when it seems everything and everyone is taking all your strength and you don't have any left.
This is when your souse comes in because he/she can be your strength when you have none and because there will be times when you have to do the same for him/her. This is what a strong marriage really means.
9. Never put your marriage on hold for anything
In a long marriage life happens: kids, jobs, no jobs, house mortgages, college, etc. It can be a lot to juggle. And if you're not careful, you and your spouse can get so caught up in these other things that your marriage is put on the back burner.
But this is not good to do. After life slows down and it is once again just you and your spouse, you will find, if your marriage played second fiddle to everything else, you won't really have a marriage anymore. You will just be two people who happen to be living in the same house.
Now, that doesn't mean things couldn't improve, but if your marriage isn't broken to begin with, it won't need fixing. Always make your marriage first priority, and you will find your golden years to be extra golden instead of tarnished and in need of a good shine.
10. There is no such thing as fair
Most of us were raised in a world where is seems everything needs to be fair for everyone. If you work, I work. If you give, I give.
The reality is marriage isn't always fair. There are times when you might have to give a little more and other times when your spouse needs to give a little more. Once you understand your marriage will never be fair, you can both live your lives and be grateful for the give-and-take of your strong marriage.
11. Have daily check-ins with your spouse
Taking the time to sit down and connect with your spouse is uber important. This can also be a check-in for your relationship, a time to find out what may need some mending and how you can improve your marriage together.
12. Make sex a priority but not a chore
As mentioned before, we know life doesn't stand still when you are married. You have busy lives with a lot on your to-do lists.
On the top of that list, however, should be intimate time together. Sex is a key part of a healthy and strong marriage and a special time to connect as husband and wife.
Make it fun, make it sexy, but don't make it a chore. Appreciate the time you have alone as two people in love.
13. Look your spouse in the eyes and LISTEN
Technology hasn't only taken over our lives; it has also taken over our marriages. Make sure, when you have time alone with your spouse, you each put the electronics away and look each other in the eyes and actively listen.
This connection is vital to the lifeline of your marriage.
14. Let each other be in bad moods
Nobody is happy 24/7. That's a fact of life.
So when your spouse seems to have woken up on the wrong side of the bed, let him/her be in a bad mood. Don't react and don't get defensive. Just let your love sort it out, and you will both be happier in the end.
15. Never, I mean NEVER, talk badly about your spouse to other people
This is the golden rule. Never speak badly about your spouse. Period.
The only exception to this would be if mental, emotional, physical, verbal or sexual abuse is going on. Then, please speak up right away to anyone.
In other cases, however, never speaking negatively about your love is important because this not only shows respect for your spouse but also prevents you from saying anything about your spouse that might not matter in the long run and that you would regret.