Why Marriage is an Olympic Sport

Going for the gold?

Welcome to The First Years of Marriage Newsletter! We talk about the conversations, challenges, and changes that begin once the honeymoon ends. Advice from experts, mistakes from me (Jen Glantz), and things you’re going to want to know as you continue to ask yourself this question - “I’m married, so now what?”

I’ve been watching a lot of Olympics. It’s the #1 thing I’m looking forward to right now and maybe that’s not overly impressive, but it’s catching my attention.

I love cheering people on.

I love learning stories of how hard people have worked for their moment to compete, how much of their lives they’ve dedicated to their sport, how much they’ve had to give up to focus on doing something they are completely in love with.

And it made me think:

Marriage is oddly just like an Olympic Sport.

Here’s why:

  1. It involves a lot of practice

    Think of marriage like trying to master the balance beam. You’re often falling off, twisting the wrong way, or getting stuck in a split.

    It take practice to get your marriage “routine” down, to figure out what’s working, and what to do when you feel like you’re about to slip off the chalky balance beam.

  2. It takes varying types of strength

    Marriage, like being an athlete, takes all different kinds of strengths.

    Mental strength and the courage to take care of your mental health.

    Emotional strength and the desire to be open about how you’re feeling.

    Kindness strength and the know-how to support the other person when they are feeling off.

    And soooooo much more…

  3. Sometimes you need a team

    Look at the sidelines of the Olympics. While this year, most of the seats are empty, you’ll see a few coaches for every team.

    Even in marriage, you might need those coaches.

    Perhaps it’s a therapist or a really badass financial advisor.

    There are things you can do alone, sure, but you can do them even better with the right crew of people supporting you and your partner.

  4. You fail a lot behind-the-scenes

    It’s so impressive watching these Olympic athletes swim and run so fast. But what we don’t see are the days they couldn’t go any faster, the days they gave up, the days it felt so hard to just go another lap or mile.

    Everyone’s marriage is going through stuff behind-the-scenes. Not just yours.

  5. It’s harder than it seems

    I’ve been watching a lot of swimming in the Olympics and it’s made me head to my pool and try to swim laps. Turns out, it’s harder than it looks.

    Just like marriage is. Don’t let anyone try to tell you that it’s easy. It’s not.

    Marriage is an Olympic sport. Or so it feels.

    And while we all want Gold….sometime’s it’s okay to remember that progress is better than perfection.

    Progress matters too.

Okay, back to watching the Olympics and working on my butterfly stroke in the pool downstairs.

Love you (for as long as both shall live),

  1. Jen Glantz

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