The way foundation works for a building, likewise is the role of initial years in laying a strong base for a happy and successful married life. The way you treat each other, things that you do and expectations you set, is what that will set the scene for the rest of the years. These initial years can be best used to focus on each other as a priority before the other priorities appear in your life in the form of kids, career planning and more. Materialistic stuffs are good to have and of course do add to your happiness, but they cannot assure a happy and successful married life. There is much more as an ingredient to successful marriage:
Love & commitment: Not just a mere feeling of affection, but a strong commitment to stand by in all ups and downs of life is what defines the true love in a marriage. Commitment is easily adhered to when things are going smooth, but the real test happens in the time of trials.
Faithfulness: A subset of commitment, being faithful means committing to that one person wholly, from body, mind, heart and soul. Even offering moments of emotional intimacy to another person, somewhere it’s a sacrifice on faithfulness.
Transparency: Be an open book to your partner. Hiding stuffs or moulding things in front of your partner will create hitches that will grow with the passing time. Your partner should be the one person you could confide in, irrespective of the situation.
Modesty: No one is perfect. Every individual and every relationship has some weak areas. The key is to accept them and work to build on them. Accept you weak points and identify the areas where your partner is stronger. This will help you stay humble. Try to strengthen as a couple rather than as individuals.
Patience & Forgiveness: Since no individual is perfect, patience and forgiveness always form a critical part of a marriage relationship. Be tolerant to your partner even if things are not working out your way. Successful life-partners learn to show endless patience and forgiveness to their other half. Do not hold to past offences from your partner, rather forgive him/her and to keep your relationship free of any such burdens.
Time Investment: Time has always been of prime significance in any relationship. No relationship has ever worked or will work in deficiency of time. Moreover, not the quantity but the quality of time you spend together is what matters. Relationship with spouse is the most intimate and deep and hence requires more time than any other relationship. It’s a nice practice to set aside sometime each day for just two of you. A date night once a while can be an add-on.
Communication: Communicate as much as possible to make your marriage successful. Discuss about kids, your work schedules, grocery list, utility bills and whatever that comes to your mind. But don’t just stop there; also express your hopes, dreams, fears, and concerns. Discuss whatever that comes to your mind under the earth. It will help you two get closer and bond stronger for the years to come.