5 things I’ve learned from 3 years of marriage

Photos from our wedding 3 years ago

iPhone selfie before our 3rd wedding anniversary dinner

I can’t believe we just celebrated our 3rd wedding anniversary- how time flies! I bet a lot of you can relate to this. Even if you’re not married, every day I have a new ‘I can’t believe how long ago that was’ moment. I’ve now known my husband for 9 years, been together for 7 years, and now married for 3 years. During this time our lives have changed a lot- and we’ve both changed a lot. And even though 7 years is a long time to be with someone (well to me it is, as I haven’t been any longer haha) as our lives change, and we change, I am continuously learning new things about my husband, and continuously learning things about our marriage and how I can be a better wife. Just remember that this is my advice based on my experiences- it might not be for everyone, and you might disagree with something I say- that’s ok! But here are 5 things I’ve learned from 3 years of marriage:

Continuously self improve

You can’t expect to not change over 7 years, or 3 years, or even 1 year. And you can’t expect your spouse to not change either. Change is not necessarily a bad thing! I would hope that I have changed for the better in 3 years. I would hope that I have grown up, learned new things, worked on being more patient, learned more about what a marriage takes to be a good one. If I was the same as I was 3 years ago I think that would be a worry! I am so far from perfect it’s not funny, but I do try to learn- via books, the internet, from other people- how to be a better version of myself. I think I owe it to myself, to my friends and family, and to my husband.

Be present

This one gets harder and harder with each year that passes, and I know is only going to get even harder when we have children! I think being present is something that every person in the world struggles with, to be honest! Between work, family, friends, hobbies, and of course the number one time waster and ‘present-thief’ the internet! it is hard to get some precious moments every day with your spouse that you are truly present. I have found the best two places that we talk is over morning coffee in bed, and in our sitting room (often with wine!) When we first moved into our house, we had the TV upstairs in the sitting area with the lounge facing the TV, near the kitchen and dining table. I then had a light bulb moment that we weren’t utilizing the rumpus room downstairs, and more importantly, we didn’t have a ‘sitting area’ sans television, and with sofas set up to encourage conversation. After this move I found that with no TV distracting us we often sit and talk with each other there, maybe with some music in the background, and a bit of cheese and wine!

Focus on the good

Unfortunately it can be totally easy to focus on the ‘bad things’ your spouse does, or even worse, doesn’t do! Seriously though, consistently focusing on these nitpicking little issues can cause major issues in your relationship. Not only that, all that negative focus on your spouse stops you from seeing all the AMAZING things they do. Plus- are you so perfect? Have you been the perfect wife? Have you always put your husband first? Have you spent every day anticipating his every need, the way you expect him to anticipate yours? If you’re anything like me, than no! Now, this is easier said than done, and is a challenge I face on a regular basis, but I think it’s such an important thing to remember.

Travel

I’m going to go out on a limb and say almost everyone must like travel in some shape or form. Whether it’s an annual trip to the same local beach every summer or a trip to a different country every year, I think everyone likes the same thing about travel- getting out of the every day routine, seeing something new, and making memories. My husband and I are lucky to have travelled a lot together- New Zealand, China, Hong Kong, Hawaii, Europe, USA and parts of Australia- I wouldn’t take back any of our trips for anything, and the memories we have are priceless. One of my favourite things about travelling with my husband isn’t just where we go, it’s the fact that I get to spend every day with him for two or three weeks. I know some of you might think I’m crazy haha, but I honestly treasure this time together, and how relaxed and stress-free we are during this time. If you can, I would always recommend travelling with your spouse.

Make an effort

When you are with someone for a long time, it’s easy to fall into habits and get lazy. *Guilty!* Maybe you don’t always feel good about this, but you sit back and watch it happen because life gets busy and it’s easier. Sometimes you might even resent your spouse for not making an effort anymore, even though you are doing the same thing! So here is my last piece of advice- make an effort, even if you don’t want to. Make the first move! Instead of Friday night pizza on the couch, book a restaurant and haul your behind on a date night. I think it’s a bit like exercise- you might not initially feel like doing it, but once you’re there, you really enjoy it! Instead of wearing 15 year old sweatpants with questionable hole at home, get some cute pj’s and make an effort to look nice for your husband- and for yourself! Instead of resenting your spouse for not buying you something you wanted for your anniversary, think of something really special he would like, and buy it for him. This advice is about igniting the change you want to see. About feeling good because you’re doing something for someone else. This advice is about creating your own happiness.

This post was not intended to sound judgemental or preachy. It’s not meant to indicate that I do all these things perfectly on a daily basis, because I sure don’t! (hubby can attest to this I’m sure! :-P) These are just things that I have learned or become aware of that in my opinion I should be doing. Marrying my husband is the best thing I have ever done in my life- he loves and supports me every day, and I wouldn’t even be blogging if it wasn’t for him, because he believed in me when I didn’t believe in myself. Working at your marriage is worth it.

I’d love to hear your thoughts, or what you have learned from marriage, too! Share below in the comments 🙂

Madeleine

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