How to Have a Peaceful Marriage in a Chaotic World

As I write this article, I have just welcomed my husband back home from a year- long deployment in a war zone.  It is never easy for our military personnel to be away from loved ones, and it is not easy for the loved ones at home, but the year made us stronger.

We now know one thing for sure: Even if war is breaking out around us, we have power to tap into a peace that transcends all understanding.

In each of our homes, we have the power to create love, joy and peace in a culture that is filled with selfishness, depression and strife.

Below are my Seven Keys to stop fighting and create a peace-filled relationship.

1. Pursue Inner Peace

Most of the time if we are stressed in our relationship, we are looking to the other person to somehow CHANGE in order for us to feel better.  In fact, many of our goals look to an external circumstance to create for us an internal satisfaction.  So we pursue that outer thing: money, a certain physique, or a partner that does _____________ (fill in the blank).

The problem is, external circumstances never bring lasting internal satisfaction.  If we pursue inner peace instead of a change in our mate, we already come from a more empowered state.

2. Let Go of Things You Can’t Control

Trying to control another person’s behavior is an exercise in futility. The only person you can control in this world is yourself. Trying to control another will put you into a state of immediate chronic stress. This is the kind of stress that dumbs you down, wears you out, makes you sick and irritable and causes you to come from a negative state of mind.  For Heaven’s sakes, let it go!

3. Realize that Peace is Always Available Everywhere Right Now

Ultimately, Inner Peace is not something we create – it is something we tune into. We don’t have to conjure it up or manufacture it. We can take a few deep breaths and tune in to a power that is higher than our own limited emotion. A peaceful home is not out of reach. A peaceful environment can breathe into and become an expression of a peaceful heart. Just knowing that peace is available is reassuring.

4. Slow Down

It’s no wonder that in our busy culture we live in constant anxiety. We are so often rushing here and there, out of tune with the moment and multi-tasking to somehow achieve that elusive external goal. For now, let’s slow down. Stop multi-tasking. Let go of the time scarcity. Enjoy the precious moment, and think about one way in which you would love to have this moment back at a future time.

Sometimes one of my sons finds himself absorbed in the moment- looking at the scenery and hearing the sounds of laughter and he’ll say out loud, “This is a perfect moment!” He usually notices this at fairly every day opportunities. I love that!

5. Acknowledge Any Distressing Emotion

Sometimes when we find ourselves angry and we slow down, all we notice is that we are still angry. That is okay! Your emotions are speaking for a reason. On some level your feelings are just trying to protect you. Instead of running from them – acknowledge your anxiety or anger and offer acceptance of yourself and those feelings.

6. Give Forgiveness

Most of the time when your mate is on your last nerve, he or she is not being difficult just to spite you. Most of us are truly doing the best we can with the tools we have, including that person you live with. After you’ve acknowledged your own emotions and offered self-acceptance, it’s easier to lend forgiveness to another.

Try closing your eyes and picturing that person in front of you in their own little hologram as you say, “I love you, I forgive you, and you deserve to be blessed.” (Hint, this will not feel true the first several times you say it!)

7. Expect Peace to Prevail

Most of the time in life, we don’t get what we deserve; we get what we expect. If we expect people around us to be irritable and hostile, they usually will be. But if we expect them to respond to our love, to feel safe in our presence and to be pleasant, they will usually conform to those peace-loving thoughts.

When you feel a conflict coming on, expect it to be resolved in a way that makes you stronger as a couple. Where there is a will and an expectation for good – there is always a way.

I hope these tips help you keep centered for a more peaceful marriage.  No matter what conflict you face, remember that peaceful resolution begins from within.

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Leave A Reply (16 comments So Far)

  • Anonymous

    Thanks for sharing these 7 keys.  Marriage does require work and there are skills that both need to acquire for it to be full of laughter and joy. 
    Many blessings for this time of re-connecting with your husband.  Thanks for his service!

    • I’ll send the gratitude to The Sailor. Whew, right now we are on vacation on the beach. I forgot that vacationing with him is like attending fitness boot camp. By the time the kids woke up today, he and I had already walked and jogged several miles and cycled several more. BEFORE COFFEE!  My tips are preaching to myself more than ever!

  • Gina, this is a beautiful article – such wisdom. You are right, sometimes we won’t “feel” like doing these things. Probably when we feel like it the least it will matter the most. Sharing this empowering read with my thanks! 

    • Bless you Dondi! Indeed, that’s probably when things matter the most. 🙂

  • Lisa Mininni

    Gina – Thanks for sharing an inspiring article.  I especially loved the reminder in No. 3 Peace is Always Available Everywhere Right Now.  Thanks for the reminders of how we need to take a breath and tune in. 

    • Thanks Lisa. I’m not immune to getting annoyed, and having to ask myself, “What am I missing right now to stay in a place of peace, and how can I tap into it any way?”  Life is such a treasure, isn’t it?

      • Lisa Mininni

        Yes, life is a treasure.  As a 18 year conqueror of cancer, my view on life is to live it to the fullest.  It is so precious.  Thanks, too, for sharing how you stay in a place of peace.  Another great strategy. 

  • Enjoy that beautiful homecoming! Grateful to your family for your service. God bless! 

  • Lynn

    After a 37 year marriage and 20 relatively unhappy feeling years, I bailed.  Probably did it the wrong way however it took what I needed to leave, another feeling of letting go.  I had to put it behind me.  My children were devastated.  My eldest son is close to his father so that had a very powerful impact on me and the only thing I could say “It takes time to understand”.  I left him alone, my youngest son understood from many view points.  As I moved on in my life my eldest son came closer then the absolute worst happened.  My son passed away, without enough words spoken between us it haunts me today. However, I have let it go, not always, the tears flow immensely when I think of the things that were left unsaid.  A mothers love never dies and a son is always her son, no matter what.  At this time my boyfriend almost died with cancer, I was diagnosed with breast cancer, treatments to follow, life goes on.  Then again the turn of events, my ex husband meets a woman and she becomes everything, not a relationship to cherish, one of convenience.  My son and grandchildren become alienated and they do not understand.  My son and I have talked many times and the same conclusion as you have said, let it go.  So many things to let go of to have peace in your life.  My mom just passed two weeks ago and Fathers’ sermon was all about letting go; the simple things in life matter, not the material things.  You are the only one going to your grave not your money, car, house or friends.  Therefore as I write this comment the past four years I have lived a lifetime.  I learned to love again, to trust, to listen, to smell the fresh air after a rain, to laugh at my mistakes, to try and have no regrets(not easy) to live each and every day to its fullest then a little more.  Letting go is not an easy task however its the best thing that one can do for themselves.

    • Oh Lynn, thank you for taking the time to post such a heartfelt response. I celebrate your ability to love, trust, listen and laugh again. You share wisdom with us all.

  • Enjoyed the words of wisdom.The best thing that brings me and my wife closer is having bible devotion together and praying for each other. Its a closeness that is so spiritual its amazing. Thanks for all that you do Gina.            

    • Beautiful, David. Spiritual intimacy eludes most couples. That is precious that you and your wife connect that way.

  • Shari

    I’m finding that most of what I get upset about is really about me just not getting my way.  (I’ve been meditating on James 4 – very eye opening for me.)  Pursue peace!  Expect peace!  Let it go!  Give forgiveness!  I love it!  Great article!

    • Thank you Shari. I usually discover exactly what you just mentioned. Oh well – at least we’re willing to grow, right?

  • Thanks for your 7 keys of wise guidance. Expanding my understanding of #3 – that inner peace is not something I create but something that is divinely flowing through me and available for me to tap into in any moment – continues to be life changing for me (…need lots of reminders). 

    #7 also packs a punch for me. Expectations. It’s my experience that how we set these largely determine the level of our success…and the quality of our days – and relationships!

  • This is a great post Gina!  My take a way’s from this post include Let Go of Things You Can’t Control and Slow Down.  If we all practiced those things more often, we would be so much better! Very well written post; blessings every day to you, The Soldier and  your family.