by Ryan Rivera
A successful marriage is made from more than just wedding rings and legal documents—it mainly consists of that immaterial and priceless element known as trust. However, trust can waver, and even be broken, at which point high amounts of anxiety about both your legal and emotional bonds come into play.
The following tips will help you learn to reintroduce trust, and consequently, success to your marriage.
- Keep to Your Word – Make a point of making promises you can keep, and, most importantly, actually keeping them. Take to writing yourself reminder notes or setting alarms to ensure that you are consistently honest and on-track. However, don’t police each other, or allow the other person to police you—ask them politely to allow you to prove yourself, instead. The more often you show the other person that you are keeping to your word as entirely as possible, the more confident they will become in your trustworthiness and in the strength of the marriage as a whole.
- Be Direct – Don’t harbor mistrust if you are really bothered by something the other person has done or is doing. Keeping your mistrust a secret for fear of hurting the marriage further or resorting to spying on or resenting the other person can be highly damaging to trust that needs to be rebuilt. Instead, begin with sincerely explaining why you are feeling mistrust, and discuss with them ways in which you can reassure each other without encroaching on one another’s personal freedom.
- Address Mistrust Calmly – If trust has been lost, any further instances of mistrust must be handled extremely gently. It doesn’t matter if apologies have been made and promises sworn. If something comes up that makes the other person anxious and suspicious, ask them about it and answer as calmly and thoroughly as you can without making any accusations or escalating the situation.
- Complement Each Other – Complimenting each other to rebuild trust only works if you really mean it. The trick is to look for things you really do appreciate or that mean a lot to you about the other person and to let them know that you value them as often as possible. This will help you both associate the other person with shared positive moments, and to have concrete reminders of their (and your) incentives to be committed and trustworthy.
- Be Patient – Think of rebuilding trust as rebuilding a house that you will both have to live in. Trying to rush things more or less means you end up living in a foundationless, clumsily-built house that has no strength to withstand either disasters or the test of time. Building up positivity and closeness will take patience, and even when the house is built it may still require maintenance from time to time, but the more care you take with the rebuilding of trust in your marriage, the more safe and secure you both will feel within it.
Mistrust and anxiety happen to everyone once in a while, while meeting and marrying someone you truly care about is much rarer. Following the above tips will help you make your marriage outlast your temporary unhappiness, calm your anxiety, and perhaps even make it stronger than it was before.
About the Author: Ryan Rivera has seen the struggle that people go through when they’re feeling anxious about their relationship. He writes about overcoming that anxiety at www.calmclinic.com.