10 Surprising Secrets of Successful Couples

I am definitely a sucker for all of those marriage advice articles.

I can’t help but read all of the headlines and tips splashed around the web an Pinterest like,

Schedule in sex! Put in on the calendar!

Make date night a priority!

I pin “10 Ways To Make an At-Home Date Night” and once in a while, actually follow through on them. The only problem is that sometimes all that good ol’ advice, gets a bit, well, old.

So while I’ll be the first to admit that marriage does take work, when I hear marriage advice that is a little off the beaten path, like some of the advice in Iris Krasnow’s book “The Secret Lives of Wives,” I can’t help but take a second look…

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  • They vacation separately. 2 of 11
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    For over a decade, Iris Krasnow, author of "The Secret Lives of Wives" says that she and her husband have vacationed separately every summer. And surprisingly, her book reveals that many wives have found that separate vacations are key to a successful union. In her book, she writes,

    "Our separate summers leave us hot to see each other, high on our personal accomplishments, and purged of the inevitable resentments that arise in the grind of the ordinary that long marriage becomes."

    Interesting. Maybe that villa in France I've been dreaming of isn't a bad idea after all...

    Photo credit: Flick/Alexander Andreev

  • They go to bed angry. 3 of 11
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    Turns out that age-old adage about never going to bed angry might be a lie, after all. Personally, I can't tell you how many fights between my husband and I have originated more from exhaustion (hello, three young children) rather than outright anger. 

    Rather than saying things I know I will regret, I especially have learned that sometimes it is best to admit defeat and pack it in for the night. By morning, most of the time I don't even remember what we were fighting about. And sharing a cup of coffee together doesn't hurt any marriage, right? 

    Photo credit: Flickr/Aaron Gustafson

  • A kiss goodbye means more than you realize. 4 of 11
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    How many times have you or your spouse rushed out of the door without even so much as a kiss goodbye? According to Krasnow, those little moments of interaction during your day are the key to a successful union. The big gestures and the fancy nights out are nice, but when it comes right down to it, it's the little things that make a love last. 

    Photo credit: Flickr/Walt Stoneburner

  • They do what they say they are going to do. 5 of 11
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    Krasnow claims that even though many of the rules of marriage can be "rewritten," there's one that needs to stay firm and steady:

    Husbands, do what you say you're going to do and wives, do what you say you're going to do.

    If that means coming home at 5 o'clock at night, then do it. If that means paying the bills on time, do it. And if it's not working, talk about it. 

    Photo credit: Flickr/Flat Earth Theater

  • They unplug together. 6 of 11
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    Most nights end separately for my husband and I in our household --  me typing away on my computer, him locked away in his own world with his phone and headphones on. And while I am a full proponent of technology that can improve our lives and ahem, help some of us work from home, I begrudgingly admit that sometimes, unplugging together is totally necessary. 

    Photo credit: Flickr/Mr. Thomas

  • They mow hearts in the lawn. 7 of 11
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    I'm not making this stuff up. One woman interviewed for Krasnow's book claims that for the past 19 years, her husband has mowed a "valentine" in their yard every time he mows the lawn. 

    Do you think I should have my husband try this the next time he mows the lawn?

    Photo credit: Flickr/ep5os.de

  • They keep some parts of their relationship secret. 8 of 11
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    Another women interviewed in the book discussed how she was "blindsided" when she discovered that her husband was sleeping with her "very best friend."

    "It is dangerous to tell all," she says in the book. "If you are so close to another woman that you are revealing everything about your life, then something is lacking in your marriage."

    Photo credit: Flickr/Schill

  • They have friends of the opposite sex. 9 of 11
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    I admit that I have a hard time believing this one. I just can't picture my husband hanging out casually with another woman, nor do I really believe that I would be 100% ok with it. But Krasnow claims to have a best friend who is a male, who not only helps complete her own personal life, but enhances her marriage as well. 

    Photo credit: Flickr/loop_oh

  • They find their own happiness. 10 of 11
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    Successful couples know that they can't rely on their spouses to complete them or fulfill every aspect of happiness for them. As Krasnow writes, "I love this husband but I am a whole self without him, as he is without me." 

    Love it. 

    Photo credit: Flickr/ClickE

  • They don’t have it all figured out. 11 of 11
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    That would definitely be that guy and me. Learning as we go, but I can definitely--and confidently--say that our marriage really is getting better every day. 

    Read more of Chaunie's posts here or learn more about Chaunie (and her husband) by checking out her blog and following along on Facebook

    Babble posts:

    A Test of Young Love + A Cinderella Sneaker

    13 Things You Need To Know About Marriage

    Why I'm Glad I Got Married at 21

Photo credit: Flickr/Emory Co Photo

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