Last week my wife and I went on our first couples retreat. I’m a little embarrassed to say we’ve been married ten years and hadn’t done anything like this before. Totally my bad. But we took some steps to change that. Tim Lundy was our speaker. He did a phenomenal job. Here’s a snapshot of what we learned during our time there at Forest Home:
1. Oneness is about closeness, not sameness.
2. Oneness doesn’t just happen; couples make it happen.
3. Marriage oneness is made up of common direction, emotional connection, and mutual commitment.
4. Greater marriages requires skill and will.
5. In good marriages couples learn how to manage their communication differences.
6. You don’t always have to fix everything.
7. Think, think, THINK before you speak.
8. Make a date to communicate on a regular basis.
9. Communication is more than words.
10. Conflict is the sign of an alive marriage.
11. Conflict is the fire that forges two “me’s” into one “we.”
12. You can’t change anyone but yourself.
13. Never address tough issues when you’re stressed or upset. Anger is emotional alcohol.
14. Speak short, listen long.
15. Learn to ask for and give forgiveness.
16. Oneness is hard-won.
17. In marriage, confusion around roles and responsibilities, or the unfair distribution of responsibilities to one mate over another, can quickly undermine a couple’s sense of oneness.
18. Most people learn 75% of what they know about life in the first 5 years of life. That’s something you don’t want to outsource.
19. Be realistic, not perfectionistic, about your standards.
What are some things you’re learning about marriage right now?