Marriage is the committed union between two souls who wish to live in love, joy, and happiness to the end of their lives, learning how to love each other unconditionally.
Understanding this definition of marriage, rather than any of the mainstream definitions, and using it as your pole star is essential when you want to find your soulmate, engaged, or need to fix your marriage.
This definition is what we live by at The Marriage Foundation. It’s more useful because it defines the goals and expectations everyone should have for a happy marriage.
Ironically, hardly anyone, be they a marriage expert, newlywed, or seasoned married couple, or in an in-trouble marriage, know why they got married in the first place.
They may very well know why they married their soulmate, but not why they wanted to get married in the first place. Can you see the problem?
Why do we act in ways that hurt our marriage?
Random actions won’t bring you marital happiness they have to be intentional. Worse is reactive behavior that doesn’t consider happiness or love, at all.
Common sense is that how you treat each other determines how the marriage will be. So the above is basic. But that isn’t enough. There is more to marriage than just how to treat each other.
The Basic Truths About Marriage
#1 You are one half of your marriage
When you married you became exactly one half of the marriage that was newly born, so you need to see yourself differently, as a part, to make the marriage work as it should.
This reality means that you have to understand yourself and conform to your marriage, not just continue to be the old you who takes care of yourself and sees others as “outsiders”. It is not that you are selfish, but we all are products of our drive-to-survive to one degree or another. There has to be a conscious shift in thinking and behavior.
so in order to understand marriage, we need to know more about ourselves. How we see ourselves has much to do with how your marriage will function. You need to learn to master your mind.
#2 Mastering your mind is critical for happiness
I know that this may sound way off the beaten path but remember the beaten path leads to divorce and crappy marriages. When I was a divorce mediator I didn’t know this stuff either and neither did any of the marriage counselors who sent me their failed clients. I had to discover this. Now, I know it is critical.
Mastering your mind takes education and effort. The courses for both men and women that I share through The Marriage Foundation, which I founded in 2009, address this first. It has to be first. Otherwise what you learn will barely work.
#3 You need a vision of a happy marriage
Many years ago, I was a big Star Trek fan. It was on television and there was an episode where they went to a planet where the beings there were super-intelligent and super-advanced. And earlier, a ship crashed landed on their planet and these beings only had parts to work with. So, when they put the parts together and formed what they thought human beings were meant to look like it was kind of a train wreck.
The people were far from what we would think of as beautiful but they did the best they could, but they didn’t know. Unless you know what a happy marriage is you have no direction. Random actions won’t produce a happy marriage any more than driving without knowing where you are going will take you where you want to go.
#4 You need to understand marriage
Marriage isn’t something that comes naturally. When we are dating we think it will but that doesn’t last long. You have to know how a marriage works. Unlike driving where there are examples of safe driving everywhere we look married people are all winging it. That is why the divorce rate is ridiculously high.
#5 You need to understand that you and your spouse are souls
This isn’t a religious sermon!
The fact is that we are souls who have a body and have a mind but are ‘essentially’ souls. That means our true nature is love, joy, and wisdom. So, when we get married we marry all three (combine all three-marry) but again, we are essentially souls.
The soul connection is where the deepest benefits occur.
Body, we use the body to connect intimately for soul connection.
Mind, we harmonize our minds for soul connection.
Soul, I think you are getting it, we connect for love. And love is why we get married.
#6 You need to understand love
Everyone knows that when you connect with that one person who you wish to be with for the rest of your life, people call you, and you call yourselves soul mates. Isn’t it true? Do you think it’s just created by some greeting card company? No, you’re soul mates. You are, essentially love and crave love and must have love.
Love is NOT an increased like or emotion like you will hear from the pundits who define it that way. We know better. You need to grasp the idea so you can cultivate it in your marriage.
Here is a youtube video I did on the same topic.