When you look at the long term numbers on marriage and divorce basically it’s a crap shoot. The divorce rate goes up and down a bit depending on the economy. However, generally speaking, you’ve got about a 50/50 chance of staying married.
Any you know what? I don’t think those numbers tell much of the real story.
Truth of the matter is, I don’t care how many people stay married because a lot of people do who have no business being together because they’re hurting each other and the people around them. A lot of other people stay together out of habit and not love.
Staying married in and of itself isn’t that interesting to me.
What I’m interested in is what happens between two people who stay together and stay happy along the way. I’m interested in those couples who go through hard things that are easier because they’re together. I’m curious about couples that not just respect each other, but adore each other years, or even decades down the line.
After being with my husband for almost eight years I’ve learned some stuff. However, my parents have been married for 67 years. I’ve learned some things from them. I’ve also had the privilege of an insider's view on hundreds of relationships in my work. So I’ve had a unique opportunity to see what makes happy couples tick and what’s lacking in relationships that fracture and break.
The good news is I believe it’s pretty simple. Happy couples do two things consistently that determines the quality of their relationships.
Happy couples live in an attitude of gratitude.
They don’t take each other for granted. They recognize the efforts and sacrifices of their partner. They say, “please”, and they say, “thank you” liberally. Happy couples know they operate as a team, but don’t take that teamwork for granted.
The both show and express their gratitude more than what many people would think necessary, or even normal. Happy couples aren’t normal. They are a minority.
Happy couples appreciate their partners, not just for what they do, but for who they are.
Appreciation and gratitude are different. Appreciation for a happy couple looks a lot like adoration. They appreciate their partners up close and from a distance. They notice their partner’s unique qualities and celebrate them. They shower appreciation and adoration on their partners when it’s easy, but especially when it’s hard. They give appreciation even when they feel like they don’t have anything left to give.
I’ve seen a commitment to gratitude and appreciation bring the most damaged relationships back from the brink.
However, more importantly, gratitude and appreciation set a tone that prevents relationships from getting to the brink in the first place.
You’re going to hear a lot about giving thanks in the next few days. For just a few days on the calendar gratitude and appreciation will be the theme of our conversations, and that’s a good thing.
However, if you want to be lucky in love, you have to make your own luck. Gratitude and appreciation have to be the dominant theme in your relationship all year long, and next year, and the years after that.
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Lisa Hayes, The Love Whisperer, is an LOA Relationship Coach. She helps clients leverage Law of Attraction to get the relationships they dream about and build the lives they want. Lisa is the author of the newly released hit book, Score Your Soulmate and How to Escape from Relationship Hell and The Passion Plan.
Posted on 11/21/2014 at 12:00:00 AM