Love and Marriage

Grunge Hearts Part 1

Love and marriage. Like the song says…they go together. But apparently there’s a whole lot of other things that go together with marriage, at least highly happy marriages.

Last Friday DoAhead Darlings gave “ya’ll” a peek into a snippet of a snippy me as snapped at my hubby. In Heart Smart (Learning to Fight Fair) I referenced an amazing little book titled The Surprising Secrets of Highly Happy Marriages by Shaunti Feldhahn.

Feldhahn lists twelve “secrets” of happily married couples. Her findings are based on research and honestly they are——surprising! This week and next week I’ll share my favorites. If you’re a multi-tasker, click on the video below. You can listen to Frank while you read. 🙂

Marriage Surprise #1

Highly happy couple “know little is big”. In other words, the small stuff matters. According to Feldhahn, “A handful of simple day-to-day actions increase the likelihood that our spouse feels that we care deeply about them, instead of feeling that we don’t care.”

Does it bless your spouse to have the mail brought in and on the counter when he gets home? Does he love a five minute backrub while watching the game? How about a cup of coffee in a to-go cup waiting by the door as he leaves for work?

Research says…the little things make a difference.


Marriage Surprise #2

Highly happy couples believe the best. Feldhahn’s surveys (conducted over a ten year time frame) revealed that “nearly every wife or husband who thinks ‘my spouse doesn’t care’ is flat wrong. Their unhappiness is caused by a belief that isn’t true.”

She shares stories of couples who have learned to assume the best about one another as well as their spouses feelings towards them.

Research says…believe the best.


Marriage Surprise #3

This finding is probably one of my favorites.  Highly happily married couples don’t always settle their disagreements before bed. I touched on this truth in last weeks post. Feldhahn states, “Happy couples discovered the difference between resolving their anger and resolving the issue.”

Research says…you can go to bed “mad”.


Marriage Surprise #4

This little gem was good for me to read about. Feldhan learned that highly happily married couples learn to act as if they love each other even if they don’t feel like it. The surveys showed that couples who changed what they did could change how they felt.

Happy couples treated each other with love and respect even when they didn’t always feel like it. They reported that it wouldn’t take long until they felt love and respect toward their spouse again; not an impossible task to do (especially if you believe the best of them)!

Research says…to boss your feelings around.


Next Friday I’ll share four more of my favorite findings. In the meantime, let’s challenge one another to apply these healthy principles to our own marriages.

(Me? I’ll be working on the little things this week!)

Your DoAhead Friend,

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