The primary thing that couples are always building and protecting is the strength of their emotional connection. Shared experiences together along with creating positive affirmation are the first steps to building emotional connection. The next step is to find friends and environments that support your marriage and to understand that real happiness is up to you.
- Maintain close relationships with family and friends.
A balanced life includes a community. Every couples needs family and friends that encourage, support and help them grow and protect their relationship. We have all seen and heard marriages that struggle and fall apart. Develop friends and interests that support and encourage your marriage.
“Dr. Coontz thinks all this togetherness is not necessarily good for couples. The way to strengthen a marriage, she argues, is to put fewer emotional demands on spouses. This doesn’t mean losing emotional intimacy with your husband or wife. It just means that married couples have a lot to gain by fostering their relationships with family members and friends. The happiest couples, she says, are those who have interests and support “beyond the twosome.” For Better: How the Surprising Science of Happy Couples Can Help Your Marriage Succeed
- Happiness is your responsibility.
Most people have a baseline of happiness that eventually returns to a natural set-point, even after positive events like marriage, kids or a promotion. True happiness is within each individual, expecting a spouse to create happiness is unrealistic and unfair.
“What is surprising is that research shows happiness is relatively stable. A major life event (like marriage or the birth of a child) may offer a short-term happiness boost, but studies suggest most people return to their own personal happiness “set point.” If you ranked your level of happiness as a 7.5 on a scale of one to 10, research shows that most of the time, the events of your life won’t change that. You’ll pretty much be a 7.5 happy person all your life.” For Better: How the Surprising Science of Happy Couples Can Help Your Marriage Succeed
Now I struggle with this one. My faith says that we can find abundant love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control Galatians 5:22-23. So I don’t agree that we have a set point that can’t change. I know that God can change your heart and attitude. Here are some ways that you can change the “set-point” and find happiness.
- A relationship with Jesus Christ – I don’t believe that true happiness can be found outside of Christ. You develop a relationship with Christ when you ask and allow Him to become Lord of your life. That can happen now. Ask Christ to forgive you and ask show you how to live in relationship with Him.
- Develop a heart of Gratitude – Become grateful, it will change everything, yes everything. Gratitude Given or Received Creates Life
- Give to others – When you give to others it puts things into perspective. You learn to see others through giving. Looks for ways to sacrificially give often.
- Be Optimistic – Their is always a way for things to improve – you are not stuck. It can always get better and improve. Live in the confident expectation of hope.