Your marriage isn't a La-Z-Boy recliner, OK? You can't just expect to sit back in it and relax. If you do it will surely break on you, and a furniture repair shop won't be able to do anything about your pending separation or divorce.
Far too often couples become complacent in their union; sometimes it's both partners and sometimes it's just one. Regardless of who's complicit, it is terrible for the growth and maintenance of your relationship.
There are some who believe that you should marry someone you are comfortable with and that a sign of a good marriage is how comfortable a couple is together - but, this is wrong. Well, in a sense at least.
Of course, you want to feel like you can be yourself around your partner. Of course, you want to feel comfortable being the real you - acne, quirks, flaws and all. Of course, you want to be with someone you are comfortable communicating with. Of course, you want to be with someone you are comfortable being intimate with. Yet, my strong opinion is that, in all truth, you have to be a bit uncomfortable too - at least if you want your relationship and romance to endure.
Comfortable is easy, right? But, is it always fun? Nope - I don't think so. Comfortable doesn't require much work. But, no work equals no real reward. Comfortable is convenient. But, it is generally not exciting - not in the least.
Listen, I know that some of you will not agree with me on this, but I've got to attest that I wholeheartedly believe treating your spouse and your marriage like a La-Z-Boy recliner doesn't bode well for the state of your relationship.
Here is what getting too comfortable will do
It will make you lazy.
Lazy when it comes to physical affection, as well as verbal adoration toward your partner.
It will make you bored.
Comfortable can be nice, but it can bore you to pieces.
It will drive you apart.
People are naturally drawn to other people who excite them. Nobody is getting excited when everything is seemingly pleasant and serene, or just plain redundant all the time.
It will breed resentment.
If you are overly comfortable with your partner then you won't be trying to flirt with them, which in turn may make your spouse question your desire and commitment to them.
Yep, you talk too much to one another. You talk even when you don't feel like talking, and you talk even when you are not getting along. You talk so that you can hash out your problems and brainstorm some solutions.
Like really touch - kisses that are more than pecks and hugs that wrap around and give a booty pinch instead of just a tap-tap on the back.
You aim to impress.
You don't have to be fake or go overboard, but treat your spouse like you did when you were courting them.
Outwardly express your gratefulness for them both to them and to yourself. Sometimes we need to remind our partners how much we care for and need them, and sometimes we have to remind ourselves just how much we care for and need them.
What else do you do?
You get out of that darn La-Z-Boy recliner and you treat your marriage and your spouse more like that rare antique you're enamored with.
Falling in love is easy. Getting married isn't that hard. But, staying married and staying happy, that's a fete for all. Focus on your level of comfort and you will be disappointed, but focus on your gratefulness for a shot at really amazing love and you'll surely be helping it last.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on Nicole Merritt's website. It has been republished here with permission.
Nicole Merritt is a mother of three and the Owner and Founder of jthreeNMe, an imperfectly authentic peek at real-life marriage, parenting, and self-improvement. jthreeNMe is raw, honest, empowering, inspiring, and entertaining; it’s like chicken soup for those that are exhausted, over-stressed and under-inebriated, yet still utterly happy. Nicole's work has been featured by Scary Mommy, The Good Men Project, BLUNTmoms, Thought Catalog, Everyday Family, Motherly & many others. You can follow Nicole at jthreeNMe and on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram & Twitter!