7 Lessons we Learned from 7 Years of Marriage
I’m Back! The last few months have been a whirlwind. Being a new Mom is no joke especially with all the things that tried to throw me off. I didn’t plan to take a break from my blog and businesses but I had to because I was in survival mode so I had to prioritize my health, my newborn baby and my family first. I appreciate all the love, support and understanding I’ve received through out this process and I’m excited to be back to continue to share my experiences with you. I decided to kickstart my blog by sharing “7 Lessons we Learned from 7 Years of Marriage”.
Last month, my husband and I celebrated our 7 year wedding anniversary and it was they best ever because we finally got to celebrate with our greatest gift, our precious son Chimaobi-Jax. We’ve been together for almost a decade, but the last 7 years has been a roller coaster. We’ve dealt with different things from fertility to financial issues and even life or death situations, so we are so grateful that we continue to overcome all obstacles and trials that we encounter.
Nobody is perfect and no relationship is perfect but it’s very possible to have a great, healthy and happy marriage if you do the work. Yes you can learn alot from different people, but never make the mistake to think that someone else’s life or marriage are #GOALS because it’s all work and although you may see the beautiful part of their marriage, you have no idea what happens behind closed doors and what things they had to deal with to get there. My husband and I feel blessed to have made it to 7 years as a family. We are definitely stronger, wiser and more in love with each other than ever and not only are we excited for what the future holds but we’re enjoying raising our son and teaching him what love, marriage and family is because that’s the foundation of who he’ll be in the world.
Below are 7 Lessons we’ve Learned in 7 Years of Marriage
1. Know, Love & Work on Yourself – Be intentional about who you are or want to be, and show up as her daily. By being and knowing your authentic self, you can better understand what type of relationship, marriage, family and life you want to have before you get into a relationship with someone. Also, don’t go into a relationship with self-hate and so much insecurities because it can be destructive. You have to do some work first. While single, spend less time looking for someone who has the quality on your list and spend more time being the person who has what’s on the list. If you do this it will help you realize that the list is impossible if your expectations are way too high or it will challenge you to become better. Also spend less time moving from one relationship to another and more time exploring the world, trying new things and working on yourself so you are your best and happy self by the time you meet the right person. Marriage or your spouse is not going to fix the internal work you need to do on yourself.
2. Communication is Key – Communication unlocks the doors to knowing yourselves and can prevent a lot of problems. Communicate clearly, openly and honestly with your partner so they truly see you, know you, understand and trust you. If your partner isn’t accepting of who you are with all your imperfections, mistakes, failures then it’s not the right relationship. If they use things from your past to hurt you when you have a disagreement, walk away because your spouse is supposed to build you up and not tear you down. If they keep judging you by your worst mistake instead of acknowledging your growth, then it’s not a healthy space for you to be you to flourish.
3. Be Friends First – I hear a lot of people say that they can’t see themselves romantically involved with a specific person because they only see them as a friend. Well I’ll say reconsider because a lot of great relationships/marriages have stood the test of time and have been successful because of the foundation of friendship. Don’t date or marry someone just because of physical attraction or lust because you need a whole lot more to sustain a healthy relationship and the major things you need to have a good and successful marriage are the same things you should have in a great friend like agape love, compassion, kindness, compatibility, support etc.
4. Love and Marriage is a Choice – They say love is blind but I disagree. Love is not being blind to someone’s faults, weakness and imperfections, instead it’s seeing it all and still choosing to love and commit to them. Nobody is perfect so be ready to observe and learn about who you want to marry. Don’t be too carried away by the physical attraction, lust or excitement of a new relationship and jump into a lifelong commitment. Logically evaluate them and make sure that they meet the 80-20 rule and don’t have any qualities you consider a deal breaker e.g. being abusive, because whatever you don’t like about your partner or whatever issues you guys have while dating will generally magnify after years of marriage when the honeymoon phase is over. Also don’t let anyone pressure you to get married or make your choice about who to marry for you because they will not be the ones to live with that person and go through marriage with you.
5. Set Boundaries with Expectation – Establish rules and boundaries in your relationship that both of you can respect an uphold e.g. no matter how much you disagree or argue, don’t insult/call each other names because after the disagreement is over, the hurtful words will still echo in your home and linger in your heart. Also be clear about the expectations you have for your partner so you can discuss and agree on it if not you may end up very disappointed.
6. Forgiveness is essential – You can’t have a healthy and successful marriage without learning to forgive each other because I guarantee you will each make mistakes, upset each other, get on each other’s nerves because that’s life. Nobody is perfect and everyone is unique and comes into a marriage with their differences. A marriage without forgiveness is like you trapped in an enclosed space with so much pollution and poison. It’s toxic and it will not work.
7. Compromise & Share responsibilities with your spouse. It may never be 50:50 but being able to lean on each other to share responsibilities, chores, childcare, finances is great. It makes for a great partnership knowing that you have a spouse who has your back no matter what and is ready to get down and dirty with you whenever needed. You also have to learn to be flexible and take turns to compromise on things instead of being rigid and choosing to dictate everything that happens. Marriage is a partnership so decisions and the work to be done for the family has to also be a joint effort because you’re both working towards the same goals for your family.
I hope these tips are helpful. If you have any additional advice, tips, or questions, comment below.