The best predictor of having a long and successful marriage relationship is NOT:
- Communication Skills
- Conflict Resolution Skills
- Common Interests
The absolute best predictor of a successful marriage is the quality of the friendship between husband and wife.
Having great communication and conflict resolution skills are helpful; having common interests is good, but they are not enough to guarantee success. The critical foundation for marital success is friendship. The husband and wife genuinely like one another. They enjoy spending time together.
When I coach young couples, I tell them to keep building their friendship bridge !!! By that I mean, both spouses need to be very mindful of things that build their sense of closeness and friendship. Some examples might include:
- Treat one another with dignity
- Use good manners (even after you get married)
- Continue getting to know one another
- Share information about your day with each other
The bottom line is your are either building the friendship bridge in your marriage or you are tearing down that bridge. There is no neutral. It is one or the other. So, be intentional in building your relationship with your spouse or fiancé. Everyday do something that will create positive feelings between you and the other person. Everyday.
When you mess up, and you will, be quick to own your stuff and repair your relationship quickly.