The Best Marriage Advice I Ever Heard

One Super Easy Marriage Tip

10 Simple Steps for Resolving Conflict in Marriage

The Best Marriage Advice I Ever Received

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The best marriage advice I ever received was at a bridal shower, but it applies to men and women alike!

You know how it goes, after the bridal shower games, everyone was asked to share a piece of marriage advice with the bride. As we went around the circle giving advice, there really wasn’t anything new that most of us hadn’t heard before. “Keep dating.” “Always Kiss Goodnight.” But then, it came to the bride’s grandma.

She paused, thought for a minute, and then simply said, “Just remember, you’re not marrying a jerk.”

Everyone laughed at her unexpected answer, but then she explained. “You’re marrying a great guy! A guy you love enough to want to be with forever. So when he does something dumb or that hurts your feelings just remember – you didn’t marry a jerk! Chances are, he didn’t do it on purpose and he had different intentions than you’re assuming. So instead of getting offended, angry, or sad, just stop and find out what they were.”

So simple, but such good advice. Whether you got married yesterday or 10 years ago, the advice still applies. 

You Didn't Marry a Jerk - the best piece of marriage advice I've ever heard.

You didn’t marry a jerk! Think back to when you first got married and why you picked your spouse. {Because she was, and is, the girl of your dreams! Because he’s amazing and you know how to pick ’em, right?!} Then remember that the next time a disagreement or conflict arises in your marriage. Give your spouse the benefit of the doubt. A great partner doesn’t hurt your feelings on purpose. They aren’t trying to make your life harder or disappoint you. Chances are, your spouse is trying just as hard as you are, and you just need a little more communication.

So the next time you’re feeling frustrated, hurt, or just not seeing eye-to-eye…

Here are 10 Simple Steps to Remember

 1. Stop and pause! Before you get angry or say something you may regret – stop yourself! Take a second to breathe and to think. (And, if you’re religious like me, to say a quick prayer.) 

2. Instead of starting to talk right away to tell him all the reasons why you’re right and he’s wrong, ask him questions to understand his perspective and reasoning. 

3. Listen! Really listen! As Stephen R. Covey says, listen with the intent to understand, not with the intent to reply! In other words, don’t be so busy forming your “rebuttal” in your mind that you don’t hear what your spouse is saying and understand what he’s feeling.

4. When explaining your feelings to your spouse, use “I” statements instead of “You” statements to avoid the blame game. For example, “I feel overworked and exhausted.” Instead of,  “You’re not helping around the house.”

5. Avoid using exaggerations and extremes, as well. For example, “You always…” or “I never…” or “Why don’t you ever…”

6. Practice common courtesy. Because we are comfortable with those we are closest to, too often we are the harshest to them. Even though we love them the most, we can hurt them the worst. The words you use are powerful and carry weight, so choose them carefully. 

7.  Share responsibility for the conflict. The truth is, both of you have valid points and valid feelings, and both of you can always improve. 

8. Resolving conflict doesn’t always mean that one person is right and one person is wrong. It doesn’t mean that one person has to “give in” to the other. Instead, it means understanding where the other person is coming from and enlarging your perspective. 

9. After you understand how your spouse is feeling and where you’re each coming from, work together to find a solution that works for both of you. Remember, you’re on the same team so neither of you can win unless both of you win. {And sometimes it’s okay to agree to disagree.}

10. End closer together than you started. Conflict in marriage is not a bad thing. When we work and communicate together, it helps us grow stronger and learn more as a couple. Forgive freely and always end with loving words and affection. 

Need a Recap?! 

10 Simple Steps for Resolving Conflict in Marriage

10 Simple Steps for Resolving Conflict in Marriage

If you liked this post, you’ll love this One Super Easy Marriage Tip! And for even more great marriage advice, check out our 50+ Secrets of a Great Marriage and our Reclaim Your Marriage Program.

*** If you want to understand your husband, and men in general, better, you might want to check out The Queen’s Code. We keep hearing wonderful things about how this book has helped women crack the code on men. It’s on our reading list. You can even get the first chapter for free on her site.***

About the Author: Becca

Besides my hilariously witty husband, I love a good book, sappy songs, old black-and-white movies, cute crafts, and all things chocolate. With three (seriously adorable) little girls at home, my life is giggly, frilly, glittery, and very, very pink!

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8 Responses to The Best Marriage Advice I Ever Heard

  1. Such great advice! I’ll admit I struggle with the listening part. I usually just want my part heard and forget that he has a say in resolving our conflict as well..ah well, I’m a work in progress!

    1. Oh man, I’m the same way! It’s even worse because my husband is so patient that he just stops and listens to me. I have to remind myself to STOP and ask questions and listen to HIM. We’re all a work in progress. 🙂

  2. YES! What great advice! I think a lot of problems arise in a relationship when we lose sight of the reasons we love our spouse & how great they are, and start focusing on the negative. They are SO wonderful and we love them SO much, so why do we forget that?!

  3. I have three pieces of advice to make a marriage stronger and last longer, because I’ve been married for15 years. The 1st piece of advice: Always be courteous and kind to another; by saying please, thank you and your welcome. I know this helps because it makes my husband and I feel appreciated and helpful.
    2nd piece of advice: Split the house chores up. My husband and I both work full time jobs and we have three daughters to take care of, but we still work together and keep the house cleaned up. For instance, I keep the kitchen clean and he does laundry. Also my husband and I both cook dinner together almost every night. This gives us time to unwind and spend some one on one time together and talk about how our day went. Plus, when my husband and I work together it shows our daughter’s that keeping the house clean isn’t just the women’s job, its everybody’s job.
    My 3rd piece of advice: Never go to bed mad! My husband and I implemented this rule on day one of our marriage, It obviously works because were still going strong after 15 years. He’s my best friend .

    1. Congrats on 15 years, Sherri! That 1st piece of advice you shared is my favorite- it’s such a simple thing but makes SUCH a difference! XOXO