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Is your marriage not what you expected? Perhaps you are struggling badly and wonder if anything will fix it? Maybe your marriage is ok, but you wonder if it could be even better? Your mindsets about your marriage can make all the difference. Changing the way you look at your relationship, through a Biblical lens, can help you to appreciate your spouse and your marriage, and reduce the amount and intensity of conflicts you may have.
I have identified seven mindset shifts that can change the way you feel about your marriage. By living with these front and center in your thinking, you will see your marriage in a different way. If you and your spouse both approach your relationship with these mindsets, the differences could be life-changing.
Mindset #1: Priorities
In my marriage, I put God first, my spouse second, and then my kids. Everyone else comes after that.
Set your priorities by determining your activities based on that order of importance. Make sure your relationship with God is right, and spend time with Him. Give your spouse more attention than your kids. The other people in your life should understand that you hold those priorities first before doing things for others.
Mindset #2: Permanence
In my marriage, Divorce is not an option. I have determined that I will not bail on my spouse. We can overcome every problem with God’s help.
Stop threatening each other with this horrible permanent outcome over every little temporary problem. Protect your relationship from others’ ideas and opinions, and start acting as one flesh that cannot be torn apart.
Mindset #3: Decision
In my marriage, I show love through a decision to keep loving. I will not let emotions rule or destroy our relationship.
Is love a choice? Or is it an emotion? I think it’s both. Decide every day that your spouse is worth your love, and find ways to show it. Love is a decision to keep loving no matter what.
Mindset #4: Preference
In my marriage, I demonstrate that my spouse is my favorite person in the world on a daily basis, both privately and publicly.
If your spouse is your favorite person, you should want to treat him/her better than you treat anyone else. Combat your selfishness by speaking well of them and putting their needs and happiness ahead of your own.
Mindset #5: Time
In my marriage, I determine to spend time with my spouse one on one so that our connection indestructible.
There are many ways to have quality alone time with your spouse. Date nights are a great way to get away from the everyday world and reconnect–especially if they lead to a little more “alone time” with your spouse when you get home. Make a plan for these times and spend time honestly communicating with each other.
Mindset #6: Optimism
In my marriage, I choose to look for the bright side of every experience.
Many people say marriage is a let-down after dating. Now all the real world stuff gets in the way. Eliminate that idea from your mind. Believe that all problems can be worked out. Make an effort to create positive moments to outweigh the bad ones.
Mindset #7: Expectations
In my marriage, I choose to stop chasing after a perfect relationship. I let go of any preconceived notions I had about what marriage is like and let mine stand on its own merits.
Everyone has different expectations of what marriage is going to be like, but we never really talk about them before we’re actually married. Expectations for your marriage from God and from each other are important to have a clear vision of.
Applying the Mindsets
If you are really struggling with your attitude towards your marriage, trying to change all of this at once will probably overwhelm you and you won’t get anywhere. Choose one to create a habit from and work on that. The others may naturally follow, or you can specifically choose another after the first one is ingrained in your psyche.
These seven mindsets are the basis for what I want to offer you–a chance to have a marriage that others will be jealous of. One where you know that you know that your marriage is a safe and secure way to live your life.
Nothing is guaranteed, but isn’t it worth a try?
Want a quick list with descriptions of all Seven Mindsets? Sign up to download them here. You’ll also get a self-assessment and a simple action plan.