Building a romantic relationship almost always begins with having something in common, whether it’s taste in music, a favorite restaurant, a movie you both recently saw – there’s got to be something to spark a conversation.
As you grow closer, you likely find more and more opinions you share, things you enjoy doing together, places you both like to visit, and more ways to develop a connection to one another. After all, the relationship wouldn’t grow to the point of marriage unless there was something keeping you connected.
Now, having things in common is great, but what about the things you don’t see eye to eye on?
Before we even get into compromise, having differences of opinion is a good thing. If you both thought the same way about everything, how would you compliment each other’s personalities? How could you use your experiences to help one another through difficulties or encourage each other to try something new? Differences can be strengths, and understanding this fact makes it much easier to contend with opinions that don’t align with your own.
Beyond the large differences in personality and opinion that help make couples dynamic, there will certainly be disagreements in day-to-day life. When this happens, the best thing to do is work together to find a middle ground that satisfies both of your needs.
We aren’t always going to want the same thing as our spouse, but when it comes to something relatively harmless like what to have for dinner or what color to paint the living room, finding some common ground is much, much better than digging in your heels and causing an argument.
Finding the middle ground could mean talking about your differing opinions (in a calm, constructive way, of course), and deciding together that one choice or the other is the best option, based on the persuasive points of one of you. It could mean creating a third option that meets both of your requirements, and every once in a while, it can mean settling on half and half!
One couple recently featured on the Huffington Post did just that with their wedding cake – half traditional, half Batman. This is a great example of finding the middle ground that, at first thought, seems like it would never work – but when put into action, the end result is something unique, fun, and representative of both people in the marriage.
Shouldn’t your marriage reflect both of your personalities?
In times of conflict, when you can’t seem to come to a mutual decision, stop yourself for a moment. Take a good look at what you’re both trying to accomplish, and instead of fighting for your position, put your heads together to find a common solution you can both be satisfied with.
For more advice on how to strengthen your marriage, check out the StrongMarriageNow System today!
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Dr. Dana Fillmore and Amy Barnhart, co-Founders, StrongMarriageNow.com