5 Steps for Resolving Conflicts in Marriage

The outcome of conflict depends on how you handle the issues. Destructive conflict depicted by negative or unhealthy reactions, shouting, accusing, not listening leads to more conflict and should be avoided.

Discuss your differences early before they get entrenched, before resentment and negative emotions build up. Select a good time to talk about the problem. Open up to each other. Make eye contact, tenderly touch or hold hands.


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Talk About It

Communicate using “I” – statements. Express strong feelings in a healthy way. Avoid hurtful statements. Don’t attack your partner by using ‘you’ – statements ‘you caused it… you are the one that….’ Use “I” – statements to express your feelings for effective communication.


Listen well to understand your partner’s perspective. Take turns to speak. Focus on the problem not on the other person. Go beyond what he/she is saying verbally to understand what he/she is communicating emotionally. Ask questions to clarify what he/she is saying. Ask non-defensive questions to elicit non-defensive responses.

Remain Calm

Stay calm. Respond calmly to deal with the problem and avoid attacking your spouse. State your opinion, express your feelings, concerns and needs calmly using a calm tone of voice and positive body language.

Find Solutions Together

Work together at getting to the root of the problem. Search for a solution together. Consider each other’s view. Come up with a solution that you are both happy with, found workable and acceptable. Show remorse and apologize where necessary. Learn to forgive.



Prevent A Recurrence

Resolve to prevent a recurrence. Appreciate your spouse for the little things he/she does for the family. Choose happiness in your marriage.




7 Key Qualities to look for in a Life Partner

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‘The secret of a happy marriage is finding the right person’. Julia Child

You are ready to take the leap! You are settled in your job or career and prepared to have a home of your own. Marriage is a serious matter. The choice of who you marry is your responsibility. Choose carefully. This  will determine the degree of your happiness or misery in life. You would need to pay attention to the following important considerations. They will help you choose wisely.

Genuine Feelings

There is genuine love. The feelings for each other are real. Do not think of getting married if you have only known each other for a couple of months because if you start living together you may discover surprises that may pose problems to the young marriage. Get to know and understand the person.

Motives matter in marriage. Marry for the right reasons. She is not desperate telephoning, coming to your house or office, smothering you with attention or doing your chores. The right person would not force herself on a relationship or a man no matter how much she or others admire him. A woman should never pursue a man. The man should do this.

She does not demand money from the man. Do not marry for the wrong reasons not for money. Build on a strong foundation.


Marriage goes beyond shallow considerations. The person loves you for who you are and is willing to be there for you. He respects your body and willing to wait for sex in marriage.

You cannot ascertain his intentions despite his sweet words and actions. You are not a mind reader. Avoid being used and dumped. Let him take you to the altar first.

Ready to be his helpmeet. Ready to submit to him and complement him. He is ready to love her unconditionally. A person with whom you are ready to spend the rest of your life.

Willing to accept and respect the other person’s culture and traditions. She is willing to love his mother. His mother is happy she is getting a daughter. They are willing to stay close to God. Willing to be committed to God.

Self Development

You have worked on yourself. You can marry your person if you were of the opposite sex. You have developed yourself to become the right partner.

She has a means of income, polite, well-mannered and pays attention to her appearance.

Be a good person to attract the person you deserve. Someone who will help you be the best of yourself.

Shared Values

Your potential partner shares your values, standards, principles and beliefs. You share the same values. You value the same things. You share a vision of where you are going together. The person possesses the qualities you hold dear and is willing to learn. You are free to fully express and be yourself with this person. He shows you affection, respects you and you enjoy spending time together. Conversation with this person is interesting not boring. You have shared dreams. You look to a life of peace and happiness with this person.


You have set standards for yourself. You are accountable to actions. He is caring, considerate, possesses the spirit of humility and self-control. He is interested in you and your progress, willing to help you be a better person. He is not abusive, selfish, critical, fights or beats you. He is not given to negative tendencies. She does not feel inferior, frustrated or drained when with him. He is cultured. He is hardworking. When there is a misunderstanding, ready to admit his/her shortcomings, offer sincere explanation and apology.


Love will bring you together but you need trust to help you sustain it. The person is trustworthy. There is trust, honesty, sincerity and reliability in the relationship. The person does not spy on you, monitor your phone calls or computer usage.

A Relationship With God

Seek divine guidance.


If free of destructive behaviors, does not drink, prudent in spending, does not use drugs or other illicit substances but you do not feel right about it without any logical reasons follow your inner nudge.

Listen to your parent’s strong reasons.  Carry your pastor, counselor and parents along. Do not manage a relationship.

5 Strategies to keep your Marriage strong

You can make your marriage strong but you have to acknowledge that disagreements are normal. They will occur when your interests, perspectives or opinions differ. Remember, you are unique individuals you are different and will see things differently. You can make your marriage strong applying the following positive approaches:

Good Communication

Good communication is key to a strong marriage. This is based on openness, respect and listening well. Learning to use positive words and gestures can help make a marriage healthy and happy.

Be a good listener. Avoiding assumptions. Don’t assume anything. Don’t always think the worst. Hear what the other person has to say before you jump to conclusions. Don’t interpret his/her actions without hearing him/her out. Resolving differences peacefully.

Settle misunderstandings by listening carefully and not thinking of retaliating. Air your feelings. Ask questions to clarify issues and understand what your spouse is saying or thinking. These should be questions that will not lead to defensive response or argument.

Focus On Each Other’s Strengths

Know your partner. Acknowledge each other’s unique differences and individuality. Get to know the unique person or individual you are married to. This will help you gain insight into each other’s needs and expectations and how to best meet them. Not taking everything personal. Respect each other’s opinion and not placing emphasis being right or wrong.

Good understanding births tolerance and acceptance. You do not view problems as ‘his’ or ‘her’ problem but as ‘our’ problem and unite to deal with it. Recognize the good in your spouse and be supportive of each other’s personal growth. 

Be Kind To Each Other

Drop the ego. Never take each other for granted. Give more. Be dependable, trustworthy, faithful and reliable. Always work on yourself, have good character. Create time for quality time together. Putting away the phone.

Get to know how you can improve as an individual and as a couple. Make time for each other. This will help you identify problem areas early and mend fences. You will avoid mind reading, making assumptions or jumping into wrong conclusions.

Love Your Spouse

Restore your feelings for each other. Do things together. Laugh with each other. Revisit the period of courtship when you responded to his love and leadership expressed through his thoughtful initiatives, plans, gifts, taking you out even to places you were not too keen about. You shared his interests looked your best to please him and put up your best behaviour. There was love, respect and teamwork. You can bring these back.

Put God first

Acknowledge God in your marriage to enjoy happiness. Take every problem to Him in prayer. Pray for your spouse. Pray for your family. Pray together.