There are many theories about what creates happy relationships, and how to have a happier marriage . You don’t have to look far to find a plethora of quotes from psychologists, authors, and many others, who have advised us on how to create our own “and lived happily ever after.”

21 non-negotiable rules every marriage must follow

We’ve rounded up some of the best tips to help you live a happier life together.

Stay focused on the good

“A happy marriage does not mean that you have a perfect spouse or a perfect marriage. It simply means that you have chosen to look past the imperfections in both. ” ~ Darlene Schacht

It’s easy to overlook our partner’s little flaws when we’re focused on the good qualities that attracted us in the first place. Stay focused on the good.

Find your being happy

“Marriage does not make you happy: you make your marriage happy.” ~ Drs. Les & Leslie Parrott

Do something daily that makes you happy and your relationships will benefit. You cannot be happy in a relationship if you are not happy with yourself.

Forgive imperfections

“A successful marriage is not the union of two perfect people. It is that of two imperfect people who have learned the value of forgiveness and grace. ~ Darlene Schacht

Forgiving is such an important ingredient in relationships. Holding on to things that make you angry keeps you in a negative space and prevents you from being your best self.

It starts with you

“Success in marriage does not come simply by finding the right partner, but by being the right partner.” ~ Barnett R. Brickner

Trying to change your partner will only backfire, so focus on your contribution. Address only what you can control.

Make your marriage a priority

“Marriage is not a noun; It is a verb. It is not something that you get. It’s something you do. It is the way you love your partner every day. ~ Barbara De Angelis

Stop looking at marriage as a thing and start thinking of it as part of yourself. Take care of it, nurture it and let it grow.

Express your love daily

“The greatest weakness of most human beings is their hesitancy to tell others how much they love them while they are still alive.” ~ Orlando Battista

Be open with your expressions of love.

Savor the good

“Marriage is like good wine, if properly cared for, it only improves with age.” ~ Unknown

Appreciating and enjoying the good in your relationship attracts more good, and your relationship becomes stronger and better.

Make self-care a priority

“One of the greatest gifts you can give your husband is your own fulfillment.” ~ Stormie Omartian

You cannot take care of your relationships if you are not taking care of yourself. Make it a priority.

Learn from the past and the dream of the future

“Marriage. It is like a cultural railing. It links people to the past and guides them to the future. ~ Diane Frolov

Find the lessons of the past and use them to help you shape your future.

Learn something new every day

“A good marriage is one that allows change and growth in individuals and in the way they express their love.” ~ Pearl Buck

Learn to love learning. Learning is the key to growth and evolution. And growth is the key to strong relationships.

Live the present

“Love as if there is no tomorrow, and if tomorrow comes, love again.” ~ Max Lucado

Stay focused on what really matters, and don’t let life’s distractions keep you from living in the moment.

Celebrate the best of each other

“In marriage, when we honor and celebrate each other, we are freed to be the best person we can be.” ~ Drs. Les & Leslie Parrott

Make each day a celebration of good in your relationship and in each other.

Be kind and generous

“A good marriage is a generosity contest.” ~ Diane Sawyer

Do something special every day. A little note, a surprise cup of coffee, or a simple phone call just to say hello goes a long way in showing your partner how much you value them.

Actions speak louder than words

“Married couples who love each other say a thousand things without speaking.” ~ Chinese proverb

Make sure your actions show your love. Many times what you do and how you do it says more than expressing your love in words.

Invest your time

“The more you invest in a marriage, the more valuable it becomes.” ~ Amy Grant

Nothing takes the place of spending time on the relationships that matter most.


“Make a list of ten of your spouse’s faults, which, for the sake of your marriage, you will always overlook. You can live with those ten. ~ J & G Murphy

There are things that bother you about your partner. Make a commitment to accept them and let them go.

It’s the little things

“It’s the little things that keep us together. Those little things will make me love you forever. ~ Sonia Schaad

They are not the big gestures that say love, they are all the little things that we do every day.

Be a support

“Lean on each other’s forces. Forgive each other’s weaknesses. “~ Unknown

It’s easy to be in a relationship when things are going well, but it’s tough times that strengthen the bond. Remember to be there, be supportive and ask for help when you need it.

Maintenance counts

“A relationship is like a house. When a light bulb burns out, don’t go buying a new house, change the light bulb. “~ Unknown

Make sure your relationship receives regular care. It gets more expensive if you wait too long.

Think freely

“If you want to know where your heart is, look where your mind goes when it wanders.” ~ Unknown

Encouraging your creative and thinking mind will keep you happy and flourishing in your relationships.

Be engaged

“The marriage succeeds only as a lifetime commitment with no escape clauses.” ~ Dr. James Dobson

It’s very simple, you have to be willing to go through the valleys as much as you are willing to go through the peaks. Put all the luggage on and stay in it for the long term.

By Dr. Eric Jackson

Dr. Eric Jackson provides primary Internal Medicine care for men and women and treats patients with bone and mineral diseases, diabetes, heart conditions, and other chronic illnesses.He is a Washington University Bone Health Program physician and is a certified Bone Densitometrist. Dr. Avery is consistently recognized in "The Best Doctors in America" list.

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