” I love you. You’re perfect. Now change.” – a patient, half jokenly speaking about her husband

There are months of planning for the great event, your wedding.  Now you are back from your honeymoon and into the everyday experience of living with someone who, in many ways, is very different from you. There usually is no road road map to follow and you learn on the job as you go along. So, now what do you do?

The following are some relationship tips that are not in any order but may make the road you both travel together much smoother journey.

 1. Relationships where both people feel validated, heard and understood stand the best chance of success.

 2. People don’t marry the perfect spouse but the relationship can work if each of them grow in the same direction.

 3.  Relationships need attention paid to the little things that are often taken for granted.

 4.  Learn to discern between bogged down by the many insignificant issues while missing out on focusing on the few issues that are truly significant.

 5. Balance your relationship between being both independent of and interdependent with the partner.

 6. Be aware that putting that your partner down may be more reflective of your own insecurities, rather than those of your partner.

 7. Communicate by talking less and listening more to what is said implicitly as well as explicitly by your partner.

 8. Understand that you are married to someone who is different from you and not necessarily wrong because of those differences.

 9. When dealing with conflict, focus on that one issue at a time, rather than getting side tacked bringing up other unresolved issues. 

 10. Being aware that in spite of your differences, having similar values will help you get over the rough spots.

 11. Being comfortable enough each other that you can be yourselves and be able to laugh at your own idiosyncrasies  

12. Trust enough in the relationship to be able to articulate your needs to your partner and feel they are heard and understood.