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10 Things to Start (or Restart) a Lasting Marriage



Starting (or restarting) your marriage on the right foot is crucial for laying a solid foundation that will support your relationship through the highs and lows ahead. Here are some key things to consider as you embark on your marriage journey together (or give your marriage a good restart if you've been married for a while):

  1. Assessments: Before diving headfirst into your new life together, take the time to assess your individual strengths, weaknesses, and compatibility as a couple. Consider undergoing pre-marriage counseling or taking personality assessments like the Enneagram and Christ Centered assessments. We often use these in the process of helping marriages see where they are. They can provide valuable insights into your communication styles, conflict resolution approaches, and areas where you may need to grow as a couple.

  2. Financial Transparency and Debt Freedom: Money matters can be a significant source of tension in a marriage, so it's essential to establish open and honest communication about finances from the start. Sit down together to create a budget, set financial goals, and discuss your attitudes toward money. Aim for full transparency regarding income, expenses, and any existing debts. Working towards becoming debt-free as a team can strengthen your bond and pave the way for a more stable financial future.

  3. Educational Resources: Invest in your marriage by seeking out valuable resources that can provide guidance and support. Consider reading books together on topics such as books that will deepen your spiritual connection as a couple (e.g., books by John Eldredge). These resources can offer practical advice, insightful wisdom, and encouragement for navigating the complexities of married life.

  4. Establish Boundaries with Extended Family: As you merge two families into one, it's essential to establish healthy boundaries with your in-laws and extended family members. Clearly communicate your expectations, preferences, and limitations regarding visits, holidays, and involvement in your lives. Set rules for communication and engagement that prioritize your marriage and ensure that both partners feel respected and supported by their families. If you've been marriage for a while, do a checkup of your family boundaries and what is needed.

  5. Social Media Boundaries: In today's digital age, maintaining boundaries around social media can help protect the integrity of your marriage. Consider setting guidelines together, such as deleting opposite-sex friends from social media or discussing boundaries for interacting with ex-partners online. By prioritizing transparency and trust in your digital interactions, you can strengthen the foundation of your relationship and reduce the risk of misunderstandings or jealousy.

  6. Sexual Transparency and Intimacy: Foster open and honest communication about your sexual history, desires, boundaries, and expectations within your marriage. Discuss your individual needs and preferences, and work together to cultivate a fulfilling and mutually satisfying intimate life. Seek guidance from trusted sources, such as marriage counselors to address any concerns or challenges related to sexual intimacy and maintain a healthy, vibrant connection as a couple.

  7. Alignment on Faith and Spirituality: Shared faith will provide a strong foundation for your marriage, offering guidance, support, and shared values as you navigate life together. Take the time to discuss your beliefs, values, and spiritual practices as a couple, and explore ways to deepen your connection with each other and with a higher power. Pray together regularly, and seek opportunities for spiritual growth and exploration as you embark on this sacred journey together.

  8. Regular Check-Ins and Communication: Make intentional efforts to nurture open and honest communication in your marriage. Schedule regular check-ins to discuss your relationship, share your feelings, and address any concerns or conflicts that arise. Practice active listening, empathy, and vulnerability as you strive to understand each other's perspectives and deepen your emotional connection. This leads in to dates and time away from the daily grind (see no. 9 below).

  9. Prioritize Quality Time Together: Amidst the busyness of life, it's easy for quality time as a couple to take a backseat. However, prioritizing regular date nights, shared activities, and meaningful conversations is essential for strengthening your bond and maintaining intimacy in your marriage. Make it a priority to carve out time for each other amidst your busy schedules, and cherish these moments as opportunities to deepen your connection and create lasting memories.

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