I’m so excited to share this post with you guys! You may or may not know that I recently got married to a wonderful, handsome, and caring guy! He’s so supportive and really is amazing, I couldn’t have asked for a better partner in crime. Now, with that being said, in my first blog post a month or so ago, I said I wanted to keep things real and transparent. Life isn’t always cute outfits, stylish shoes, and perfect days. Don’t get me wrong, I have SO many days like that, but there are definitely days when things are tough, tough, tough. So, because we’re all human, and I know I’m not the only one who has these days, I wanted to share a little bit about what I’ve learned and how we’ve grown in the past six months. I’m also going to be starting a short series of posts about our wedding and how I planned it. It was such a special day and I wish I could relive it again, so I thought I would share all my tips and tricks. Even if you’re not planning a wedding, still check it out, because I’ll be sharing all our photos- from decor, bridesmaids style, gifts, and much more! Now on to the good stuff, six things I’ve learned that I hope will benefit you in some small way. This isn’t just a post for newly-weds or married couples. These are things I think all relationships go through or things all relationships need to do in order to succeed and prosper. Here we go!
1. Compromise is KEY. I recently learned this, or relearned this I should say. I have to brag on my parents a moment and say how great they were in raising us and teaching us basic things like compromise. For the most part, as kids we’re taught to see other’s perspectives, take turns, and understand other’s feelings. This is literally marriage. If I would have known this as a kid, I might have paid more attention. So, at the moment I’m currently working on all of the above. Compromise is hard, it means sacrificing what you want, and sometimes not getting what you want. As newlyweds we have really had to work hard on this. Sometimes it’s as small as I want Mexican food and Cameron wants a burger, and sometimes it’s a lot bigger than that, and can turn into a huge argument. I have to say, Cameron is really way better at compromising than I am. We both have our strengths and weaknesses, like every one does. We’ve learned that we have to work as a team, compromising takes team work. We’ve come to realize that putting each other’s needs before our own makes us want to compromise for the other. When Cameron puts my needs first, it creates a feeling that makes me want to do the same for him. Which is a win-win for both of us. Marriage is all about giving and taking, just like any relationship. It could be with your boss, your sibling, parent, or friend. If we can’t be selfless and give to others, we won’t receive the same respect.
2. Take time to just be with each other. Life gets SO busy. We are no strangers to this. Seriously, by the time you workout, get to work, have dinner, take care of the dogs or kids, it’s time for bed! The day’s fly by, so I get it. It can be extremely difficult to make time for each other. This is something we’re really trying to get better at. It’s easy to get take out and come home and watch TV on the weekends, but make a point to get dressed up and do something you may not have done together. I’m all about sticking to a routine and having a schedule, but mix it up and do something spontaneous. It’s hard sometimes to get out of your comfort zone and go do something you might not like, but try doing something your spouse or significant other enjoys. Seeing someone happy and enjoying what they are doing creates a sense of euphoria, and when someone you love is happy it will make you want to be happy as well. Switch it up and do something romantic, do something silly, do something adventurous. There are so many fun opportunities, so take advantage of them!
3. PUT THE ELECTRONICS DOWN. I am so guilty of this one, and I feel like we all are now a days. This one can definitely be applied to any relationship. Literally everywhere we go, people are sitting down to have meals and their kids are on iPads or they are on the phone, technology is everywhere. Don’t get me wrong! I love my technology as much as the next, but there comes a time when we have to be present. Our Instagram notifications can wait, that voicemail is not going anywhere, and your texts will be fine for a couple of hours. Cameron and I have found ourselves having conversations and both staring at our phones, and we just have to stop and say, “Okay, no more!” This is a hard one for both of us because with blogging and Instagram, and Cameron’s Kicking Business plus his full time office job, we both could spend hours on hours on our phones or computers, but at the end of the day a conversation with someone you love is so much better for you than how many likes we’re getting, or texting someone back. I think our society has lost it’s way when it comes to communicating face to face, and it’s really sad. Like I said, I’m guilty of this at times too. But make it a point to put the phone away at a certain time, and spend time TALKING. I promise, once you get in the habit of setting technology aside, you’ll realize how much more enriching life is!
4. Learn to surprise each other! This one is SO fun and obviously us girls love a good surprise. But ladies, guys like this too! Bring home his favorite coffee or sonic drink, leave him an encouraging note! Whatever it is that makes your significant other smile a little, DO IT. I swear these little things go such a long way. When Cameron leaves me notes in my lunch box, or sends me an encouraging text in the middle of the day, it can change the whole direction of my mood/day. I’m a firm believer in little thoughtful actions going a long way. With that being said, it doesn’t have to be small. If you’re an awesome planner and want to plan an amazing outing, go for it. Again, I really have to say, Cameron is amazing at this. He’s constantly doing things to surprise me, and I’m about to brag for just one second so bare with me. At Christmas time last year he surprised me with a carriage ride with Clydesdale Horses and I about died! I mean how amazing is that? It was SO fun and the best date. It’s a memory we have forever now and I’m so grateful for that. Whatever it is you choose to do, put your heart into it and make it something that is about your significant other. Show them you care about what they like, and you will get the same in return.
5. Learn how to agree to disagree. In my opinion this one is slightly different then being able to compromise. Learning how to agree to disagree is a bit more difficult. This means that you are accepting of your partners’ differences and aren’t asking them to change how they feel. We are all so uniquely different, and we shouldn’t have to change who we are as an individual just because we get married or are in committed relationships. Sometimes it is really not worth the argument, if you’ve both stated your point and are still having conflicting opinions, that’s okay sometimes! Pick and choose what is important and what is not, let the little things go and put effort into working on the substantial ones.
6. Last, but certainly not least, listen! This might be the biggest bit of advice I could give to any type of relationship. Let me preface that by saying, I am by no means a relationship guru. I am constantly messing up, and learning as I go. Marriage is hard, it is not easy, and it is work. But at the end of the day it is worth it. I think if you can genuinely listen to your partner, and his or her needs, you can get through anything. Listening is the base of any meaningful conversation, and if we can’t listen we will not be able to solve the issue. Don’t just brush it under the rug, work it out, and get to the bottom of it. Sometimes that is so much work and we just don’t feel like it, I get it, but you have to do the work! Listen to the small things, the good things, all the things. If you’re significant other is happy LISTEN, if they are mad LISTEN, if they are struggling LISTEN. When we as humans feel listened to we feel as if we are important to someone, and what better feeling is there than knowing you matter to someone!? I know it’s hard to always be attentive, and sometimes listening wholeheartedly isn’t always doable. However, make the conscious choice to try, if you can’t listen at that moment, set aside a time to sit down and discuss whatever it is your partner wants you to listen to. If you can do this, you can do anything!
Okay friends, I really hope you could relate to at least a small portion of this post. I know not everyone has the same issues, and no one relationship is the same. At the end of the day though we are all going to struggle, and there is something great about knowing you’re not the only one. I really enjoyed writing this and hope you enjoyed reading it. I’ll be sharing some of our wedding photos at the bottom of this post, so be sure to take a look. Also, don’t forget my Wedding Wednesday posts will start next week, so be sure to check the blog next Wednesday. I appreciate every single one of you who have visited my blog, sent an email of encouragement, or liked my posts. You don’t know how much it means to me, so thank you all from the bottom of my heart.