Getting married is an exciting milestone, but it’s just the beginning of the journey. Building a strong, healthy marriage takes ongoing effort and commitment from both partners. As a newlywed, there are many things you can do right from the start to set your marriage up for long-term success. While there’s no shortage of marriage advice out there, the tips below are based on research into what actually makes marriages thrive. Whether this is your first marriage or a subsequent one, implementing these 7 best practices can help you create the fulfilling, lasting partnership you desire.

  1. Enhance your marriage with a weekly date night We can’t stress enough how important it is to have a regular weekly date night. Research tells us that date night protects your relationship by introducing novelty and fun. A Date Night is a pre-planned event when you both schedule out some time for yourselves away from your ordinary routine. Some newlyweds struggle with the concept of a Date Night. Deciding to go get Chinese food on the spur of the moment lacks the planning and “special” feeling of a true Date Night. Just doing something together isn’t enough. A Date Night conveys a sense of leaving the ordinary realm of humdrum daily experience. You dress differently. You go to a different place or do things that aren’t a part of your daily routine. Date Nights are special times together.
  2. Try something exciting and different on a regular basis Marriage advice for newlyweds can be pretty boring and repetitive. But pay attention to this one… it’s a keeper. Right now you’re riding a high. Research tells us that the honeymoon period has a shelf-life. It tends to only last about 12 to 30 months. Some newlyweds who crave excitement tell us that their honeymoon phase petered out after as little as 6 to 9 months. “Marriage must fight constantly against a monster which devours everything: routine.”― Honore de Balzac When you’re a newlywed, it can be intoxicating. Everything about your life feels exciting, vibrant, and full of promise. The best way to stay that way is to do new and exciting things at least once or twice a month. I don’t care what it is – take a dance class, play miniature golf, go to a concert. “New” and “different” are the operative words here. Too often marriage advice for newlyweds gets bogged down in specificity. I’m deliberately avoiding a laundry list here. Focus on exciting, different and new experiences. That will keep your dopamine levels high and help cushion your nervous systems as you adjust to married life.
  3. Learn how to have serious conversations and accept influence Perhaps the best marriage advice for newlyweds is to learn how to have really important conversations, particularly when you might not see an issue in the same way. The beauty of planned conversations is that each spouse carefully interviews their partner about their point of view. After about 20 minutes of asking deeper, more serious questions and carefully taking notes on the answers, the listening partner carefully summarizes and validates what they heard their partner say. Then you switch roles to hear the other side. The goal is to understand your partner before trying to find a solution. “A great marriage is not when the ‘perfect couple’ comes together. It is when an imperfect couple learns to enjoy their differences.”― Dave Meurer When it comes to solid marriage advice for newlyweds, this next one is critical. Gottman’s research tells us that even in the first few months of marriage, men who can accept influence and share power have, by far, significantly happier marriages. They are also far less likely to divorce than men who regularly resist their wives’ influence. Gottman says that when a husband is not willing to share power with his spouse, there is more than a 4 out of 5 chance that his marriage will eventually fail.
  4. Prevent predictable future issues One of the issues we occasionally see is one partner habitually correcting the other. Try to keep focused on the feelings, and let minor factual errors slide. Talk to your partner like you love them. Sure, you might say…that’s easy! It may be easy now, but don’t count on your ability to do this forever. Get into the habit of focusing on feelings. Don’t quibble about minor points or irrelevant details.
  5. Create your own rituals and traditions One of the strengths of being a newlywed is that you’re establishing a set of expectations for each other that will hopefully persist through time. Creating your own unique rituals and traditions as a couple helps solidify your bond and identity as a family unit. Whether it’s a special way of celebrating birthdays and anniversaries, an annual trip, or weekly Sunday brunches, having things you regularly do together that are meaningful to you is important.
  6. Show your appreciation in small things often Remember the magic ratio of 5:1. That means for every negative interaction, you should have 5 positives. The best way to do this is to show your fondness and admiration for each other in random acts of kindness. You’re probably already doing this, and, as newlyweds, your emotional bank accounts most likely have a healthy, positive balance. But don’t take this for granted. Keeping your emotional bank accounts in the black will take work. Talk now about the random acts of kindness that you particularly appreciate, and praise your partner when they do those nice things for you.


The early months and years of marriage are a critical time for establishing healthy patterns and habits that can lead to a lifetime of happiness together. By prioritizing your friendship, making time for fun and connection, learning to navigate conflict, and nurturing an atmosphere of appreciation and respect, you’ll be well on your way to the kind of marriage you’ve always dreamed of. While the advice outlined above may seem simple, it’s based on decades of research into what sets happy, stable marriages apart. Even if you’re already doing some of these things naturally, being intentional about implementing them can make all the difference. Remember, no marriage is perfect, and there will always be challenges to overcome. But facing those challenges as a united team and continuing to treat each other with love and positive regard will give you the best possible chance of marital success and satisfaction over the long haul.

“It is not a lack of love, but a lack of friendship that makes unhappy marriages.”― Friedrich Nietzsche