3 Terms to Strengthen Your Marriage

Happy Couple

As a counselor and pastor, I have used many techniques to attempt the same.  One of the best and easiest strategies to helping couples grow their marriage is to practice and apply these three terms to your marriage:

Identification

Learn how different each of you is from each other.  God designed a man and a woman with different desires, needs and interests.  Each spouse communicates differently, prefers life organized at a different pace, and handles disappointments and excitements differently. Spend quantity time identifying those differences.

(You can read more about the greatest needs of a man and a wife HERE and HERE.)

Expectations

It is not enough to identify differences.  Each spouse has unique expectations of what he or she expects from the marriage and the other spouse.  These are the things required, in one spouse’s opinion, to make marriage work well.  Spend quantity time identifying these expectations.

(You can read a post of similar thought process HERE.)

Communication

Your marriage needs continuous open dialogue. There should be a willingness to talk through each of the previous two terms throughout the marriage.  Each spouse having different and have unique expectations is not wrong.  That’s part of God’s design for marriage.  Communicating those differences is one of the keys to making the marriage work well.

(Learn about communication in a marriage HERE.)

Most problems in a marriage begin as minor problems.  The key to keeping the marriage strong and working through the problems is to address the problems while they are still small.  If your marriage is experiencing minor problems, which you feel in your heart could become major if not addressed, then this post is for you.  Even if your marriage is thriving now, but simply want to strengthen it, implementing these three terms may help.

Could using these three words help make your marriage stronger?

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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18 thoughts on “3 Terms to Strengthen Your Marriage

  1. The first two sentences of the last paragraph are my faves, and these also seem to apply to other areas of life such as parenting and our spiritual walk!

  2. I think sometimes, especially for Christians, the expectations of others can interfere with a marriage. Early on in our marriage, the church we were attending made their business to tell my husband that I was a rebellious wife in the midst of a physical trial he was having. Well, he literally ended up on the point of death (brain abscesses) and because I felt condemnation from them, I cut fellowship with that group. God healed my husband after the doctor gave no hope for his survival. From that time on, we never let the expectations of others interfere with the building up of our love for each other. I also should add that we did have some counseling several years later, but our pastor did not set expectations for us, but encouraged us in loving each other.

  3. I like these three tips a lot. My wife and I have been married for nearly 15 years now, and the surprise this year has been our need to reboot all three of these.

    My identity and hers have changed over the years somewhat. My expectations and hers have changed as well. And yet, somehow we got stuck in a rut of communicating in the same way and assuming the same things about each other.

    Things are going well for us, but it still surprised me to have experienced such a disconnect. If we had let it fester, we would have been in seriously trouble five or ten years down the line.

    • See my note above. I've been married to my wife for over 27 years. I love her deeply, but have hurt her so much over the years that she feels such a disconnect from me and lack of love and is on the verge of separation. There were a lot of things that contributed to that, but a really big one was lack of communication. When we had small issues if we had dealt with them, I think that things would be so much different today. God has healed me; now I am praying for him to do the same with my wife. Stay strong and keep those lines of communication going.

  4. Thank you for these thoughtful tips. Yes, let's hear it for "communication." I often say that there is only one problem when you fall in love with the strong silent type – and it's not the "strong!"

    I've also noticed that although I consider our marriage better than average, I still struggle with expressing my own needs and desires, because I am well aware of my faults. It seems like I'm just opening myself up to hear where I fall short, if I express a need I have. I hate being told where I am falling short. I already know.

    • For us, I think that very early on there were just differences that…well were just differences, that we probably should have talked about, but they just didn't seem that important. And in truth they probably weren't. But then it grows into the start of problems, but by then we're programmed to sort of ignore them. Instead of asking my wife why she didn't want to do something or go somewhere or why she really thought this was important, I just accepted it and so did she. That further programs us to just keep it inside. Then when things really started to deteriorate, we didn't know how to communicate about the issues or felt as though it would do no good… now we're where we are, potentially on the brink of it all falling apart. Wish I could do so much of it over and am fully fired up, if He saves us, that we will never be in this spot again.

      • I think you hit a key. Early in the marriage we don't see the small differences, or even problems, as being major. Over time they wear thin on our patience and can become major. Thanks again.

  5. Ron, Agree totally… In my marriage the really key word that has caused the bulk of our problems is "communication". If my wife and I had done a better job of expressing dissatisfaction with things when they were smaller, I believe that we could have headed off the major problems that have taken my marriage to the brink. If He ever heals my marriage and puts us back in each other's heart and arms, I'll make sure that "communication" is never lacking again.