What do you do when you think you’ve found “the one,” “the love of your life,” “your soul mate” and you want the relationship to last for the long term? What steps can you take to increase the likelihood that your love will stand the test of time? I asked some key questions to a couple who have been married for nearly 60 years and they had a lot of amazing advice and insights to share. We’ve summarized them for you, here.
Never go to bed angry.
Remember that your spouse is your best friend.
Think before you speak.
These means don’t say everything that comes to mind as soon as you think it, especially when you are upset or when emotions are running high. It takes time to develop this skill, but if you are able to take a beat before responding, your conversation will be a lot more productive and focused actually on the issue at hand and not just the feelings you feel. Along the same lines, you must be open and honest in your communication, but don’t be intentionally hurtful. This is suggesting that you should always try to “keep it real” with one another while at the same time attempting to avoid hurling verbal slings, arrows, and recriminations at each other, which aren’t productive and, in most cases, derail the conversation into unnecessary arguments.
Expect the spark to change over time.
In the beginning, it is a “hot” spark that attracts you. This changes as the comfort zone in your relationship deepens. The spark widens into much more in your relationship and it is important to remember where you were and where you are.
Communication really is key.
Respect and like each other, not just love.