• Bettina Koster

The Secret to Having a Happy Marriage


At the beginning of a relationship, every new piece of information you learn about your partner is fascinating. After a while, however, it seems there’s nothing more to learn. You know all of their stories and jokes, and things become so predictable that you know what they're going to say before they say it. In a way, that's what intimacy is. It may seem counterintuitive, but being close with someone can actually zap some of the passion from your relationship. Just because the flames have died down, doesn't mean the fire is out. There are always small embers hot enough to start burning again. If you add the right amount of fuel—with tenderness and care—it can grow and flourish again.

You can take action and relight the fire.

There’s actually a lot of work that goes into living ‘happily ever after.’ No matter what stage you are in, every marriage has its share of ups and downs. While it may sound cliché, lulls and patterns of mundanity are natural to the ebb and flow of married life. Periods of stress, boredom, and poor communication are part of the course.

As a holistic bioenergetic coach, many frustrated relationship seekers come to me to try and understand what they might be doing wrong. They’ve made their best efforts and still can't make their relationships last. They're aware that some couples face the same odds, yet stay together. They want to know what these people do differently that keeps their love alive. Are they just lucky people who have magically found the right person, or do they make relationships work no matter what? And if they do the latter, what is their formula for success?

Real love requires real work.

‘Love’ is more of a process rather than a state of arrival or achievement. It’s an action, a way of being and behaving. It’s all the steps you take to create and maintain a fulfilling relationship. It may not sound quite as romantic as other theories, but living happily ever doesn’t happen magically. Creating long-lasting love is hard. To stay in love, you have to keep growing together and as individuals.

The Difference Between Falling in Love and Staying in Love

Couples who manage to stay deeply in love for a long time do certain things more often than those who don't. For instance, they're good at taking care of themselves as well as their partner. They also respect each other and know how to set healthy boundaries for all the people in their lives.

Here are some additional things couples who stay deeply in love do to keep their relationships strong:


1. They Make It a Point to Sincerely Connect with Each Other

Couples who manage to stay deeply in love are fully present when it comes to listening to each other. Remember, listening and hearing are not the same. Listening involves our hearts. Listening to the people we care about is the simplest and most impactful thing we can do. It shows we care. When you listen, even during seemingly silly or insignificant discussions, you really understand what makes your partner tick. Continue to give them the same attention you gave them in the beginning of the relationship.


2. They Keep Their Expectations in Check

People believe that in order for a relationship to last, they must be in love with their partner 100 percent of the time. That expectation is not true. When you're together for a long time, it's not uncommon to feel bored. Acknowledging the fact that something’s off allows you to openly communicate your feelings. If you work together, you will turn it around.


3. They Show Appreciation For Each Other

When you're with someone all the time, it's easy to take them for granted. Find a way to verbally express your appreciation every day. Call positive attention to something thoughtful they've done, or tell them something you like about them. We all need to feel appreciated for the things we are doing right. Avoid assumptions, and offer to do nice things for your partner whenever possible. Remember, if we don't feel valued, we may become resentful and grow apart.



4. They Laugh Together

Couples that stay deeply in love find laughter in both good and bad times. Laughing reduces stress, improves communication, and releases feel-good hormones in the brain. It also creates great memories, helps grudges fade, and weaves hearts together. Whether it’s through little inside jokes, a silly unexpected text, or watching your favorite comedy together, wherever you find it, laughter is good for love.


5. They Keep Intimacy Alive

Intimacy is very important to a healthy marriage. You can't feel connected without your emotional and sexual feelings being in sync. As a holistic bioenergetic coach practicing in Abu Dhabi, I’m always surprised by how little married couples talk about sex, let alone their secret desires and fantasies. A healthy way of keeping the spark alive is by communicating about these wants without guilt, shame, or embarrassment. Plus, sex can lower blood pressure, improve sleep, and reduce stress! Couples who have sex regularly claim that it not only strengthens their relationship but improves their health.

In the end, just be patient with each other. Leave room to be human, make mistakes, and grow. Ultimately, be committed to changing with your partner, and your love will be ever-lasting.

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