If you have recently become engaged and are planning on getting married for a second time, then I'm sure that you hope that this marriage will turn out much better than your first. For many people who embark upon a second marriage, the hope of a better outcome is there, but the planning and forethought towards achieving that goal are not necessarily present. It just so happens that our ability to create plans is not necessarily up to the task of actually putting forth the effort to get there. That's not a knock on those of you reading this blog post; it's just what I have observed in my time as a husband, father, and family law attorney. Sometimes our lofty ambitions are not equaled by our ambition towards planning to achieve that goal.
I think this is a significant mistake. When it comes to goal setting, there are a few things that you can do to help achieve whatever goal you have in mind. Before we even get into whether or not your second marriage should include a prenuptial agreement, I would like to spend some time walking through what it means to not only create a goal for yourself but to set yourself up for success in working to achieve that goal. To don't have several unfulfilled and unachieved dreams in our life, we can discuss just how important it is to take steps along the way to help ourselves achieve those goals no matter what they may be.
How to set goals and achieve them
Goal setting is just like any other endeavor that we have in our lives. We need to be intentional and specific about our goals and then set out to achieve them. Suppose you want to achieve a successful marriage in your second attempt at that relationship. In that case, you need to get past the flowery language that you might hear on television in the movies and get down to the nitty-gritty of what you want to achieve. For instance, if you want a marriage where your communication is vital, leading you towards a happy and fulfilled relationship, you need to be specific about achieving that goal.
What does it take to accomplish this goal? What steps are involved in the process of becoming a good communicator with your spouse? In what settings should you work especially hard to achieve this goal? If you want to be a good communicator with your spouse and believe that this is the number one quality to avoiding a second divorce, you should frequently communicate with your spouse. This does not just mean saying goodbye in the morning and hello in the evening and then going your separate ways during the day, but it can mean having honest in open lines of communication with your spouse.
It can also mean sharing your concerns rather than burying them deep inside of you until it feels like you're going to burst. Marriage is all about giving and take Ann; if all you do is take from your spouse and expect them to do all of the giving, then your marriage will be in trouble. Why not take the time to establish how you want your wedding to be with your spouse before you even get married? Helping to develop mutually held goals and making it apparent that you are willing and able to communicate well with one another is an essential step towards accomplishing your dream of being a good communicator in marriage.
Next, you should consider how you can take your goals and make them measurable. Sometimes this is more easily said than done, depending on the type of goal that you have. Using our above example of having the plan to be in good communication with your spouse, it can be somewhat more challenging to put an actual measurable goal alongside the overall goal of becoming a better communicator. Can you set up benchmarks for yourself they have one or two conversations per week where you share your thoughts and feelings on a particular subject with your spouse? Or, will you make it your goal to have three to four instances per week where you ask your spouse questions and listen to their responses?
If you have a goal in your marriage to help reduce debt with you and your fiancé, you should use your communication skills to determine how much debt is at issue and then select a schedule to pay the debt down. Figuring out exactly how much obligation you have, a timeline for paying down the debt, and then breaking the deficit down into weekly and monthly payments are excellent ways to go about attacking this particular goal. Not only does it force you and your spouse to communicate with one another, but it also forces you to create specific plans to take steps towards achieving your ultimate overreaching goal of reducing debt.
One of the most challenging things about creating measurable goals for yourself is determining just how long it will take you to reach each goal. Again, if your goal is countable, such as reducing debt, your timeline will be a little more clearcut. However, if your goal is more akin to becoming a better communicator with your spouse, you may need to become creative in determining when and where benchmarks are reached.
To avoid giving yourself an open-ended time to accomplish these goals, I recommend that you make each plan set more time-sensitive. All of us need a finish line when it comes to achieving goals. If runners set off at the beginning of a race and were not told for how long they had to run, each person would be in trouble as far as determining how hard to push at the beginning, how long to sustain effort in the middle, and how big of a finishing charge to offer at the end of the course. On the other hand, when runners know precisely how long they will have to run, it is more likely that they will put forth better and more sustained efforts due to a shared knowledge of the goal in mind.
The same goes for you and your marriage. Suppose you want to make sure that by the end of 2021 that you and your spouse are not only married, but in a communicative relationship, then you need to give yourself a firm deadline. This way, you will not put that goal off into the future for an indefinite amount of time, only to never have accomplished the plan at all. Instead, you should consider a specific timeline and then give yourself a deadline to complete whatever goal you have; period along the way, you can assess how effective you have been at not only implementing plans but achieving them.
The final bit of advice that I would give as far as how to accomplish goals in marriage would be to put your goals down in writing. From my experience, there is benefit in a mental sense to seeing in clear-cut language the purposes that we have established for one another. Think about it in terms of our nation. Our leaders and teachers talk about the United States constitution and what it provides for us regarding how we govern ourselves. These are lofty ambitions contained in this document and are something that we can all turn to and read through when we have questions about where we're headed as a nation.
However, think about if our founding fathers had not written down these goals and protections in a single document. I don't believe that we would have been able to live up to them and the nation had they just been oral traditions passed down verbally. Instead, putting these goals down into a document and making it so we can all refer to them whenever the need arises made plans much more achievable. The same is true for you and your marriage. I have known a family to create family constitutions where the credos and goals of the family are written down in plain language for all to see. You and your spouse can essentially do the same thing for yourselves by creating a prenuptial agreement.
Is a prenuptial agreement suitable for you and your spouse as you head into marriage number two?
Now that we have walked through some practical ways for you to create goals for your marriage, I think it should be pretty apparent that it would at least be beneficial for many people heading into a second marriage to consider drafting a prenuptial agreement. We can talk about the legal principles that should lead a person to consider having a prenuptial agreement. Still, the reality of the situation is that if you are on your second marriage, it should be evident that there are goals that you need to work on to improve the likelihood that your second marriage will not end the same way as your first.
You can think of a prenuptial agreement as you're in your fiancés family constitution or goal setting for one another. By creating a prenuptial agreement, you have chosen to avoid a future where disagreements occur over money and one where you and your spouse will need to negotiate than go back and forth over these subjects when you are not on good terms in a divorce. You can remove the stress associated with finances in a divorce by drafting a prenuptial agreement before you even get married.
A prenuptial agreement also forces you and your fiancé to focus on the areas of your lives that may need some work. For example, if you are entering into this second marriage with a great deal of personal wealth but your spouse to be as tiny in wealth or income, this may be a problem for you and your wedding. So, it would behoove you to communicate with your spouse on these issues to clarify how the money will or will not impact your marriage. This is a much better plan than to head into marriage, having never spoken about money or how your family will view wealth and all of the circumstances that come along with having wealth.
You and your spouse may have never spoken about finances before, and it may be difficult for you. It may even have been the primary reason why you got divorced in your first marriage. Why not sit down with two experienced family law attorneys to help both of you walk through any issues that may be a factor in your lives should a divorce occur in the future? Drafting a prenuptial agreement does not curse your marriage or jinx it. On the contrary, I think there are good arguments to be made that a prenuptial agreement can help you under spell stay married rather than push you off a cliff towards divorce.
Questions about the material presented in today's blog post? Contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan
if you have any questions about the material presented in today's blog post; please do not hesitate to contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan. Our licensed family law attorneys offer free of charge consultation six days a week in person, over the phone, and via video. These consultations are an excellent way for you to learn more about the world of Texas family law and about the services that our law office can provide to you and your family as clients.