Aug 262018 2 Responses

7 Signs You Are Happily Married

Happiness isn’t meant to be the primary pursuit. If you are expecting marriage to make you happy, you are setting yourself (and your spouse) up for failure. Happiness is far more a characteristic that we should bring INTO a marriage rather than something we get FROM marriage.

Yet marriage is something that should contribute to our happiness. While being happy isn’t the primary point of marriage, it is a reasonable expectation for someone entering into the union. If we don’t expect a happier life with another person than what we could experience without them, why get married?

Marriage isn’t about happiness, but it should add to our happiness. While some wrongly make individual happiness the primary point of marriage, others wrongly diminish joy as an integral part of a meaningful relationship. Happiness matters. (See: 9 Toxic Attitudes in Marriage)

At its core, happiness is a byproduct. It’s not the main pursuit, but it is the natural result of specific choices.

7 Signs of a Happy Marriage

Happiness may express itself differently in different relationships, but there are some basic attributes that characterize a happy marriage.

1. You can be yourself. This is an often unnoticed aspect of a strong marriage. The ability to let our guard down is central to a real relationship. When we can’t be ourselves, the marriage is a mirage. Yet when we can comfortably be ourselves–not afraid to state our feelings, at ease with our strengths and weaknesses, and not pressured to be someone we are not–we are empowered to connect with each other. Consider how much laughter tends to define the moments in which we are most ourselves. Friends laugh. While we might be able to fake happiness when we are pretending to be something we are not, genuine hilarity causes us to forget about ourselves and be real. Whenever you can be yourself in a relationship, the relationship is something special.

2. Differences (and even disagreements) often lead to laughter. In unhealthy relationships, differences frustrate. They are a reminder that the other person isn’t like you and the differences are either a threat to your opinion/way or a rebuke of what you think is right. Yet in a healthy marriage, differences are seen as a strength. They are a reminder that your way isn’t perfect, your opinion isn’t always right, and life is full of variety. When you can not only accept differences, but actually embrace them, the marriage has a great potential. In a happy marriage, a couple often laughs about the differences. Having this perspective allows the couple to fight fair. When differences aren’t seen as a threat, a couple can disagree without feeling attacked. Fighting fair enables a couple to confront problems and make progress even while staying united in their love.

3. When you think of one another, the thoughts are positive. It’s a simple test, but when you think of your spouse, what are the first things that come to mind. If the first images are of disagreements, frustrations, and times in which you feel as though your spouse has limited your freedom, chances are your marriage isn’t good. Yet if your first thoughts are those of a great vacation, a meaningful act of service, a quirky habit, or a funny comment, your marriage is likely in a good spot. It’s an amazing thing about the past–it is always interpreted through the present feelings. Happy couples look back on hard times with fond memories. Unhappy couples look back on good times with pessimism. How you view your past says far more about your present condition than your actual past. If you think positive things about your spouse, you are likely happily married.

For the last four signs of a happy marriage, click HERE.

For more on the topic of happiness, see:

9 Choices Happy Couples Make

Money Can Make You Happy

Happiness Is Found In a Surprising Place

2 Responses to 7 Signs You Are Happily Married
  1. […] Here is part two of 7 Signs You are Happily Married. For part one, click Here. […]... kevinathompson.com/7-signs-happily-married-part-2
  2. […] What is a couple to do if they are not happily married? Rather than simply being jealous about the r... kevinathompson.com/not-happily-married

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