Doing Family Right

Maximizing your most
important relationships.

Marriage: Get on Course and Stay on Course

Start-up Tips for the First Five Years of Make it Last 50!

Face it; we’ve seen a lot of marriages start up. We’ve seen those that have made it and those that haven’t. We have also lived through the trial and error ordeal of really making a marriage work in our own lives. Besides, Donalyn and Dave alone have done premarital counseling with over 700 couples. That says a lot. We argue then, that these tips are worth the read and even more worth the application! Start right. Get on course and stay on course! And…if you are past the 5 year point in  your marriage, fret not, simply analyze and adjust to approximate these principles in growing measure if you want a long and strong marriage! Why not print these and put them on the fridge?

Start-Up Tips for a Successful Marriage:

1. Work to keep your marriage a priority…in both your heart and in your schedule. Think of your relationship first in deciding on all matters.

2. Start the habit early of talking face-to-face 15 minutes per day. Humans need to connect. Ask how your spouse is doing – listen, care and want to understand them.

3. Start keeping a date night every 14 days or less where you have 3 hours of fun alone. This is not a business meeting or a conflict resolution session. Live to love having fun together!

4. Keep flirting and romancing your spouse with cards, notes and other gestures of love. Never give up the chase.

5. Fight your own selfishness. Remember to treat your spouse as you would like to be treated and work to constantly see their point of view. It takes 10 years to go from “Me” to “We”!

6. Be the first one to reach out to resolve any issues or disagreements no matter who may be at fault. Stubbornness kills love. Forgiveness builds love.

7. Agree on the level of spending without consent and keep to a realistic budget for at least the first 2 years of marriage. Don’t live beyond your income….PERIOD!

8. Openly talk through and even put on paper what your sexual needs and expectations are and begin to become a giver and not a taker. Have sex often making it mutually satisfying.

9. Build your marriage on solid, tried and true values. Discuss your spiritual roots and where God fits into your home. Braid Him into your life – really wise!

10. Bravely work through any emotional baggage that is still unresolved in your life. Hurts from your past – whether your family or previous relationships – too often strangle the current one.

11. Go to a marriage seminar to keep your relationship on track on or before your 2nd anniversary. Remember, outside input is wise to get on course and stay on course!

© Dr. Dave Currie & Christie Rayburn, June 2008