life advice
4 Common Relationship Mistakes Newlyweds Make
When a relationship is young these are the conversations you need to have.

Falling in love is a wonderful experience: The ecstasy of losing yourself in anotherís eyes, the excitement of imagining a life together, the freedom of discovering the intimate secrets of another person. But we all know that after that initial love glow fades and the reality of learning to share your life with anotheróno matter how compatibleósets in, relationships require effort. And when the real work of building a relationship together begins, we all make mistakes along the way.

Here are 4 of the most common mistakes people tend to make, and how to avoid making them in your own marriage:

1. Avoiding financial discussions. This is one of the worst mistakes a couple can make. This includes how you deal with your shared expenses and your general financial philosophy (are you a saver or a spender?). If you donít get clear on these issues early on, at some point later on potential conflicts will come back to bite you. Make sure to get clear about your financial philosophy, and how you want to deal with money. Youíll be happy you did when the times get tough.

2. Not being clear about your core values. There comes a time in every marriage when you come across something that you and your spouse donít see eye to eye onóno matter how compatible you may be. These disagreements can be as superficial as having different tastes in movies or food, in which case theyíre pretty easy to navigate. But often, youíll find that you donít agree on more fundamental issues, like whether or not you want children, political views, or your fiscal philosophy. Itís important to get clear about your disagreements on these more "core" values early on in your marriage so they donít become sticking points down the road. That doesnít mean you have to agree; it just means that you need to be clear about how you differ and how you plan to deal with those differences moving forward.

3. Forgetting to put on your own oxygen mask first. Naturally, many of us tend to sacrifice ourselves for the benefit of our partners. This is a positive quality that builds trust between you. However, while itís important to think of others first, youíre no good to anyone if your basic needs are not being met. In a marriage, itís important to make sure that you take care of yourself so that you can be as supportive to your spouse as they are to you. Take your flight attendantís advice and always be sure to put on your own oxygen mask first!

4. Failing to create boundaries. I often refer to relationships as "a journey from me to us," because sharing your life with another, even to a limited extent, requires surrendering a degree of your independence. In doing so, itís also important for both partners to value and protect each otherís individuality and uniqueness. One of the biggest mistakes that couples make is failing to create appropriate boundaries for themselves within a relationship, and they end up smothering each other. So, respect each otherís space and give your partner and your relationship room to breathe and grow!

Alan C. Fox is the author of "People Tools for Love and Relationships: The Journey from Me to Us," as well as two other bestselling People Tools books. †He is a real estate investor, philanthropist, mentor, and founder of Rattle poetry journal. Visit

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