- Work. Studies show that the separate “gender roles” that often stabilized marriages in the 1950s-1970s actually raise the risk of divorce today. Today, the divorce rate is lowest in states where more than 70 percent of married women are employed.
- Spend Time Apart. While it is very important to have common interests and spend a significant amount of time together, many studies show that of equal importance is private time away from your spouse. So don't hesitant, by way of example, to sign up for that yoga glass, play an early morning round of golf, or go away for a yearly "girls" weekend.
- Talk Cooperatively. This doesn’t need to include counseling or other intervention but the parties should be open and honest about their relationship and any issues that arise. The parties need to decide issues as a team.
- Finances. It’s important that you and your spouse are open about income, expenses and debts. For example, high credit card balances can result in distrust and complications if not known to your spouse or fiancée.
- Appearance. Appearance is still important once married. This can include daily grooming, neat dress, and regular exercise. While age and life often get in the way, studies show that “caring” about your appearance is important to the other party.
Studies also show that signing a prenuptial agreement (also known as an antenuptial or pre nup) helps eliminate many of the financial concerns that can arise during the course of a marriage.