I’m not just a wedding photographer because I like beautiful bouquets or wedding gowns (though I do love those things). I do it because I love people and I want to see marriages thrive. My husband and I have been married for 3.5 years and counting, and though that isn’t terribly long by any means, we have a really wonderful marriage. We LOVE being married. But not everyone does, and not everyone tells the truth about how they are really doing so, I’d thought I would share about a couple tips from our time as newlyweds, what has helped us have a healthy marriage and how we overcame difficulties.
Something that is so vastly important for having a healthy marriage is being on the same page. You are two different people coming together. You have different ideas, opinions, and perspectives and now you are trying to become one and share a life. Naturally, conflict will arise when these differences come to a head. A simple way to minimize conflict or know how to deal with it when it inevitably happens is to read books that will help you create a mutual foundation for marriage.
Here are two books that were really influential for us as newlyweds.
The Meaning of Marriage
By now, you’ve heard all the nutty get-rich-quick schemes, the fiscal diet fads that leave you with a lot of kooky ideas but not a penny in your pocket. Hey, if you’re tired of the lies and sick of the false promises, take a look at this—it’s the simplest, most straightforward game plan for completely making over your money habits. And it’s based on results, not pie-in-the-sky fantasies. With The Total Money Makeover: Classic Edition, you’ll be able to:
- Design a sure-fire plan for paying off all debt—meaning cars, houses, everything
- Recognize the 10 most dangerous money myths (these will kill you)
- Secure a big, fat nest egg for emergencies and retirement!
You might be thinking, “Christa… how is a book about budgeting going to help me with my marriage?”, to that, I say it is going to help you SO much! Did you know that one of the main stressors for marriages is finances? That’s because it is true! Dave’s target audience is people who have a habit of using a credit card to buy things with money they don’t have to impress people that they don’t even like. If this is you, then this book will be so helpful. And if it isn’t you, then it will still be helpful. Kyle and I are just not the kind of person I described. We aren’t spenders and we are quick frugal naturally. However, this book (we also took the class he offers) was still incredibly helpful because it put us on the same page and gave us a strategy for how to save and spend wisely for our future.
I have to give a practical example of how this is helpful in everyday life:
I pretty much do all of our shopping. Grocery shopping, things for the house, and clothes for us. If our house or lives need something, I am usually the one to go out and get it. But Kyle, being the numbers guy he is, creates our budget and tends to our finances. Before we read the book and took the class, I would often run purchases by him or he would question my purchases. It never turned into a big fight for us but we weren’t really on the same page about stuff like how $10 a month is not enough for personal hygiene products.
After the book and class, this decision never happens. That’s because we have a strategy and use the Every Dollar App. When I am out shopping I will pull up our budget, check the amount left and spend accordingly. Then I log the purchase, so the budget is updated. We are always on the same page and it is wonderful. We never have conflict over finances and it is fun to work together to see how much we can save!
There you have it! Our two most influential marriage books! I hope it helps your marriage thrive. Here are a couple other books we’ve read that were also helpful or know that friends have found very helpful.