Signals of marriage readiness: Shared priorities and life foundation
As a Christian relationship coach, I am often asked how one can know if my future spouse is the right one. Because divorce is a norm in our society, my clients seek help to prevent similar events from unfolding in their committed relationships. The key is not to fear marriage, but to develop a strong sense of personal values so you can be attracted to someone who is likeminded. I have talked to individuals who believed they were in love with their significant other but hesitated to take the next step toward engagement and ultimately marriage because they had an uneasy feeling about forever after with this person. It is very easy to rationalize away intuitive signals that surface behaviors and beliefs that do not agree with what you find acceptable and true. Some issues can be worked through when further explored ... some only highlight what one already knew: this marriage should not take place. It is the ones who walk down the aisle knowing they are saying, I Do to Mr. Wrong that find themselves on a very long journey of heartache.
During my extensive career of working with men and women as a relationship coach, I have discovered the primary key to a successful marriage is emotional readiness. Before attracting the right spouse can happen, the decision to love must be accepted mentally, emotionally and spiritually. It's easier to spend years chasing a dream or running away from love when you feel too vulnerable than it is to take a step of faith and go the necessary emotional healing before making a lifelong commitment.
The right time to marry is when you take love seriously, not passively committing to marriage and ignoring red flags in the behavior of your significant other. You know what you want in love and understand the importance of making a life together. You are not so enamored with the wedding preparation that you forget to what is being celebrated. The right time to marry is when you know the correct order of your priorities, are committed to your convictions and share a strong mutual foundation of life goals with your future spouse. Preparing for lasting love and a fulfilling marriage will not take the romance out of the equation, but will set you on the right track toward achieving those dreams you have in your heart.