In 25 years of studying marriage, Dr. Terri Orbuch, research professor at the University of Michigan and author of the new book “Finding Love Again: 6 Simple Steps to a New and Happy Relationship,” has found that some of the best relationship advice comes from people who are actually divorced. They brought up the same five issues that they would improve if they had the chance to do it all again.
1. Money. “Many divorced singles say that money was the number one source of conflict in the early years of marriage,” she tells Yahoo! Shine. She recommends that each partner evaluate their own approach to spending and saving money and discuss with their spouse early on. She says there is no one-size-fits-all-financial plan, but couples need to determine their own rules and adhere to them.
2. Affection. Another surprise was that men crave affection—but not necessarily sex—more than women. She recommends carving out time for regular cuddling, kissing, hand holding, and saying “I love you.”
3. Blame. Those who found blame in factors such as being incompatible or too young experienced less anxiety, insomnia, and depression than those who blamed their former partner or themselves for a break-up. Examine what went wrong in the relationship instead of assigning individual blame, suggests Orbuch, and think about how you can resolve conflict better next time.
4. Communication. Orbuch says a trap many couples fall into is “maintenance” rather than true communication. She suggests having a “10 minute rule” every day when you, “Talk to your partner about something other than work, the relationship, the house, or the children.” The key is revealing something about yourself and learning something about your spouse.
5. Move on. If you are irked by thoughts of your partner’s old boyfriend or girlfriend or of a fight that happened weeks ago, you might not be interacting in a healthy, positive way. If you can’t let go of your anger, her book outlines a number of exercises including writing a detailed letter to the person you are angry at—and burning it.
Did you find these tips helpful for your relationship? Tell us how you maintain a happy marriage!
Source: Yahoo News
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