So... you’ve finally tied the knot. Now what? If you’re like many newly-weds, you may be wondering what you are supposed to do now that you are married. It’s something that every new couple faces and it can be daunting to adjust to newly married life. Thankfully, you don’t have to adjust without some guidance; the following are 5 essential factors that you need to consider now that you are a newly-wed.
Embracing your new shared life
As a newly married couple, you will need to learn how to embrace the new shared life you have decided to create together. There are many more aspects to a “shared life” than simply living together. For instance, as a married couple, you should now both consider your choices and decisions to be shared - this ranges from mundane choices like what you eat for dinner to seemingly small decisions like deciding to make plans to visit the city for a weekend. As someone who is married, your weekend time is not just for you, so communication (which we’ll discuss next) is essential in all decisions. Knowing this, it's also important to remember that we all need space, so back off a little if you're smothering your new spouse! Learn to communicate so you find balance in that regard.
Learning how to communicate with your spouse
Communication is one of the most important elements that newly-weds must fully embrace. Communication lets you and your spouse discuss and set boundaries, explore expectations, and generally keep yourselves on the same page now that you are married. Effective communication techniques are a must in order to thrive as a married couple. Outside of your everyday communication you will need to learn to communicate about sex. Learn together what you like and what you don't like. Understand each other's expectations on matters such as when and how often. If you're clear about such topics you'll minimize opportunities for misunderstanding and hurt feelings. No, he shouldn't just be able to read your mind! No, she shouldn't just be ready to go at the drop of a hat! Talk about it, really.
Establishing boundaries with in-laws and other family members
Marriage is the creation of a new family. This doesn’t mean that your parents, siblings and other family are kept by the wayside, but it does mean that boundaries need to be drawn in regards to letting both sets of parents and family members dictate you and your spouse’s lives as a married unit. For instance, setting boundaries that limit your in-laws and parents visiting without warning, especially if you are newly married, is something to discuss with your spouse.
How to effectively discuss expectations regarding chores and challenges
Who does the dishes - and who puts them away? This is just one of the questions that you and your new spouse will need to discuss in order to set expectations regarding household chores, duties, and other challenges. Having an open and honest discussion about where each of your expectations is will help you create a compromise that leaves you both satisfied. Don’t forget that maintaining a home isn’t just about the actual chores, but about chore management as well, which can often be more taxing than the cleaning process.
Making room for your romance
Newly-weds usually don’t have to worry much about keeping the romance alive - extended honeymoons, anyone? - but it doesn’t hurt to start making room for your romance early on in the marriage so that you don’t find things getting stagnant later on. Establishing times for regular date nights, making sure you keep the fun in your marriage, and so on, are all great ways to make room for romance.
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With our Couples Advent Calendar we'll give you a great marriage tip for each of the 25 days leading up to Christmas. This fun activity will help you focus on your relationship. Make it your next holiday tradition!