2. Don't give up your individuality. People that put everything in their relationships and leave nothing back for themselves are setting themselves up for failure. Maintain your own life, interests, and friendships... and then share with your significant other.
3. Put "effort", not "work, into your relationship. I’ve long suggested that a successful relationship or marriage takes effort, not “work”. Oftentimes, Work is that thing you must do in order to have time and flexibility for the things you really want to do. Effort is what you put in to activities you care about… that you are most passionate about making succeed. In short, Effort is a driving force behind a great partnership and marriage.
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4. Remember where you came from. The happiness and connection that start at the beginning of your relationship need to stay with your relationship. Nothing wrong with the mentality of “dating” your spouse throughout your marriage. It keeps the mystery and respect and the forefront, and allows both of you to maintain a level of effort and newness that will allow you to value each other for the entirety of your relationship.
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Charles J. Orlando is a YourTango Expert and relationship expert best known as the author of the acclaimed relationship book series The Problem with Women… is Men® and is the sole voice behind the smash-hit advice and relationship page The Problem with Women... is Men on Facebook . Charles is an active member of Mensa ("the High IQ Society"), is a contributing writer to a variety of online and print publications, and is regularly tapped by TV, radio and print reporters for his relationship and marriage expertise—including Self, Men's Health, Shape, and The Reporter.