I’ve been writing and speaking about the practical wisdom of older people for nearly a decade. When I give talks on the life lessons of the oldest Americans, it never fails;
Respect Each Other
- Respect Means That You Pay Attention to How You Say Things
- Respect Means That You Listen—and Show You Are Listening
- Respect Means Not Going to Extremes
Be a Team
The experts offer the idea of the team as a powerful metaphor for married life. Rather than a pair of individuals seeking their own interests and fulfillment, the team implies sharing a goal that requires a united effort. Few things are worse than a pervasive sense of loneliness within a marriage; if both partners need to make it on their own, the experts ask, why be married?
- Ask Yourself: Is It Worth It?
- Humor Helps
- Do the Unexpected
Accept Your Partner as Is
Don’t ever try to change people. You got to accept that and not try to change your mate. Nobody is one hundred percent perfect.Respect the person you are married to. You do not change grown people. Love each other unconditionally. You wouldn’t hold a bird with your hand wrapped around its neck unless you meant it harm. You hold your hand open and the bird can fly in or out at will. That is the way, to me, you must act in your relationships. Respect each other, hold each other in high esteem, have faith in each other. The other person can change; it’s just that you can’t make them. We don’t know how to fix people and we can’t fix people. People fix themselves.
As Long as You Both Shall Live
Marriage is two people living together and becoming as one. Marriage is between souls that become one. That means the most important thing before thinking of marriage is that we have a commitment. One must be sure in his or her mind that the partner is for you and for you only. Sometimes people think, oh, if the marriage doesn’t work out, we can get a divorce any time. But marriage is not a contract on paper that you can annul any time if it doesn’t work out. Never start married life with that notion. It’s continually committing, actively deciding to stay together. During the rough times, you have to decide to recommit yourself to the relationship.