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4 Ways to Love the One You're With

Holding on to a strong marriage often means letting go of your urge to control everything. Here's how.

"Let go." Sounds like something you'd say just before visiting the divorce lawyer, doesn't it? Isn't marriage supposed to be all about holding on?

Not always. There are times when letting go can help a relationship -- when it means releasing the negative mind-sets that get in the way of true happiness. Often these patterns are about wanting to have the upper hand: to get our own way, to win all the arguments, to call the shots in bed. The good news is that you can consciously choose to lose the my-way-or-the-highway attitude. Without it, you'll be free to make your marriage a true partnership.

"These are decisions that are within our control," says Howard Markman, PhD, co-author of Fighting for Your Marriage (Jossey-Bass). "You can decide, 'Do I need to be right, or do I need to be happy?' When you decide to be happy, there's a sense of humility and grace that develops, and that's part of the art of love."

Choosing to be happy this way isn't always simple or easy, but it is possible. Read on for four areas in which letting go can lead to greater joy in your marriage.