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27 Lessons from 27 Years of Marriage

My wife and I celebrated our 27th wedding anniversary on Friday. It seems like yesterday when we met for the first time. She was walking down the street in Buckhead, Atlanta and I was standing outside a bar/restaurant that I had just bought and opened. I was 24 and she was 27. For me, it was love at first sight. For her it took a while 🙂 but years later we have grown a lot and I want to share 27 lessons we learned.

1. You know you are with the right person when they give you strength. My wife always supported me and made me better. I wouldn’t be who I am without her.

2. Be willing to improve. Be open to feedback and don’t get defensive. Instead open your mind and heart and say, “I’m listening. Make me better.”

3. Communicate consistently. Don’t let negativity fill the void.

4. The more I love my wife the more I love my life. It’s not about what she does for me. If I focus on loving her, I feel better about myself and my life.

5. You are on the same team. Don’t act like you are on two different teams.

6. It’s better to fight and talk it out than be silent, hold a grudge and become bitter.

7. If I win a fight, we both lose. It’s not about me winning. It’s about us winning together.

8. It’s never equal. Sometimes she does more for the relationship and sometimes I do more. There’s an ebb and flow. Don’t keep score.

9. Ride the wave. Sometimes you are passionate about each other. Sometimes you need a break from each other. It’s normal to have ups and downs.

10. Marriage is like a roller coaster. You will go up and down and round and round. Sometimes it will make you scream. But in the end, you will say it was a great ride. You just have to hold on.

11. Marriage takes a lot of work. But anything worthwhile does.

12. Having a shared vision and mission is essential.

13. Complement each other. Let the best thing your spouse hears about themselves come from you.

14. Make each other feel wanted. Deep down we all want to be wanted.

15. Appreciate each other. Don’t take your spouse for granted.

16. Make time for physical intimacy. It produces oxytocin which has been scientifically proven to bind you together.

17. Create a buffer zone. When you walk in the door after work wait 20 minutes before discussing work, the kids and/or any issues.

18. Make small sacrifices. It’s the little things that let each other know you care.

19. The grass isn’t greener somewhere else. It’s greenest where you water it.

20. Research shows that 99% of couples who pray together stay together.

21. Make time to connect with each other. Kathryn and I often take a short walk while we talk.

22. You build and maintain trust through honesty, transparency, integrity and commitment.

23. Forgiveness will be required often in your marriage.

24. Realize you are two imperfect people, but marriage provides the perfect opportunity for you to heal the wounds you have together.

25. Consult with each other before making decisions that affect your finances and future.

26. Don’t say hurtful things in the heat of the moment that you will regret long term.

27. Don’t give up. Don’t quit. Read “Relationship Grit”. It’s our story, real and raw, flaws and all. We wrote it to help couples stay together. You can get it here.

I’m excited to announce our annual Positive Summit is happening May 28 – June 1! It’s a FREE online event featuring elite speakers, bestselling authors, top leaders, NFL/NBA/College players/coaches, and more. You can sign up for 100% FREE online access now at

During The Positive Summit dates, you’ll receive a daily email with a few speaker videos to watch. When a video is released, you can watch it on-demand, when you want during the summit dates (for FREE). 

Each speaker will share a short video message (5-10 minutes in length) which includes actionable advice that will help you to stay positive, overcome challenges and make a greater difference. 

Speakers Include: 

Jon Gordon, Dr. Phil, Candace Cameron Bure, Ed Mylett, Jonathan Isaac, Alli Webb, Jon Acuff, Josh Axe, Erwin McManus, Damon West, Ben Newman, Pete Vargas, Kathryn Gordon and more. New surprise speakers being announced soon! See the full lineup at


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