If you were to ask couples what they believe to be foundational in marriage, you will likely receive a variety of thought provoking feedback. I would respond that commitment is the foundation on which you build the pillars of a strong marriage.
Think of it like this, commitment is the the inherent knowledge that we are there for each other. Commitment is an unspoken assurance we have in our relationship. Notice I reference commitment as unspoken and inherent. I perceive commitment as second nature to marriage. We are together.
Since commitment is foundational to our marriage, is commitment unshakeable? No, commitment can be shaken and even broken. We have a responsibility to our spouse to be 100% committed to each other. Many times wedding vows reference commitment (‘Til death do us part).
Commitment does not just happen, it takes a conscious effort. It is our responsibility to maintain and reinforce our commitment to our spouse.
What can you do to affirm your commitment in your marriage?
Words are good – say some simple ‘I love you’s’ or that physical connection of a kiss or a hug before you leave and when you return. Or perhaps do that spontaneously! The point is do-it.
Validate and appreciate. Say it and show it such that it becomes second nature and an inherent component of your relationship.
- Encouragement – recognize your spouse’s strengths.
- Validation – notice when something goes well
- Appreciation – “I appreciate you for….” “I appreciate that you……”
- Honesty – Be truthful about your spouse’s strengths.
- Forgiveness – ask for forgiveness when needed; accept forgiveness when offered. Extend forgiveness.
- Responsiveness – Acknowledge the other person said or did something
- Perspective: Good Intentions/Good Heartedness – we do not have ill intent for each other.
- Intentional positivity – be positive on purpose.