Hey ya! I'm Jo!

I help people experience authentic
happiness in their relationships

Advice For A Happy Marriage
7 Things I wish I had known before getting married.

Jo Hazelhurst-Ntsebeza

My advice for a happy marriage (something I'm learning as I go) is advice I'd give for any happy relationship. Professionally, I'm suggesting you grow your emotional and spiritual intelligence wings.

Bluntly, it's kinda saying 'GROW the F&@K UP'.

Personally, my husband has seen my immaturity more than any human being on the planet.

He could ruin me professionally. I'd stay married to him just to make sure he never talks. (Or I'd have to...you know.. do what gangsters do.)

[PSSST!   BEFORE I confess, click here to c'mon over to my Facebook group, and click here to sign up for my FREE LOVE DARE training: Learn how to break negative relationship patterns.]

I wish I had known before getting married what I know now. I may have married sooner.

 I knew the day I met my husband we would wed. I couldn’t wait to get married. I’d have tied the knot on day two if he’d asked. Although I never brought it up (that much) I felt like Shrek:.

‘Are we there (married) yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?’

I had to wait what felt like   



                                     long            years.

As if getting married was somewhere to go. 

I know many a gal (and guy) who ended up thinking like me. Only to find once in the marriage, life still has all the same problems, if not more.    

1# I wish I had known before getting married...
Just how much all my weaknesses would be amplified

...I never knew there’d be nowhere to hide.

I’d this fantasy in my head of who I thought I should be. Who I wanted to be.  A queen of unconditional love. Ever patient, kind & gentle, full with light. The most giving, loving wife turned vixen at night.

Except. I felt tired and stressed. Sometimes even depressed. All my problems I had before we met were magnified.

No matter how much your partner tries, if you’re lonely before, you’ll be even lonelier in marriage. If you’re at all insecure, you’ll be even more so now.

Learn how to manage your stress.

2#  I wish I had known before getting married...

...Just because we were different didn’t make me wrong.

When we dated it was easy to show up energised and full of fun, ready to please. To do anything from wild sex in garden parks to climbing pathless thorny mountains in the midday sun. I could stay up til dawn, and listen for hours on end. I’d the energy of a goddess.

If I knew then what I knew now, I’d have known I wasn’t less. I’d have trusted him with the me that was me, not quite as adventurous as I’d made out to be. It wasn’t sustainable to live his life. I’m lucky. He’s wise enough to want me to be happy more than he needs me.

But who would have blamed him if he felt disappointed when I changed. And I was wise enough to not expect him to change because I did

You gotta be yourself.  Live your life.

Don’t expect your partner to live yours or yourself to live theirs.

3#  I wish I had known before getting married... 

...Dating and living with someone is NOT the same thing.
(Just like friendship and becoming business partners are not the same thing.)

Sharing physical and emotional space with someone is hard work. It’s doing the small things differently. Like leaving the toilet seat up or down. I once moved his things and he couldn’t find them. He was livid. 

“I need order Jo!’ he pleaded. He was pretty mad. “And I need the dishes washed I thought."

 If ever you’ll resonate with an axe murderer, it’ll be after marriage. If you cannot allow people to be who they are even when they irritate you, you’ll be a tyrant. 

4#  I wish I had known before getting married...

...I would keep score. I never thought myself the type.

 Tit For Tat.

Every time we fought I discovered my mind is a score-keeping child. What good thing Id done for him, and what bad thing he had done to me. These are not my proudest moments.

If you keep score it’ll taint every good moment you’ve shared.  

5#  I wish I had known before getting married... 

...Expectations lead to insecurity. 

Never mind marriage, lets speak about courtship. I couldn’t help come with a preconceived notion of what relationship looks like. After I didn’t hear from him for three days, I called him threatening to break up.

After all, surely that meant he was not that into me. I was utterly confused.

A marriage that cannot handle time apart suffocates. When we demand love the way we believe love should be, we don’t trust the person to really love us. How can we? After all we know we’ve manipulated the person into giving us what we want.

The best way to manage your stress in a relationship is to stop with the self hate.

6#  I wish I had known before getting married...My need to be right would come between us more than another woman ever could. 

The most powerful question ever put to me was by Byron Katie author of ‘’Loving what is’.

  “Do you want to be right or do you want to be free?”

This question alone has saved me from a bad marriage. How many fights we’d have had if I chose to be right.  Being right can make for a long, long night.

Criticism, control, arrogance and competitiveness is the ultimate recipe for pain. I call it the Mommy Bitch Syndrome. (Men do it too).  Love dies so you can be right and better. I still do it sometimes. So does he. We’re human. But when one of us is in ‘I’m right ‘ mode, the other lets it go and doesn’t take it personally. No grudges. Otherwise it’s war.

Most of all you if can’t love someone when they show up in disagreement to you; it’s not love at all.

7#  I wish I had known before getting married...

If I don’t look after me I can bring nothing to the marriage.

Being miserable makes for a very bad living partner.

When I don’t get enough sleep, or take time do what I love, I’m not that nice. Self-care should be a legal requirement in a marriage. Cultivate your inner strength. Focus on your happiness habits. Because the recipe for happiness is not in your marriage but within YOU!

Don’t give up on anything that regenerates you.  Get more sleep, drink enough water, exercise, meditate, and be happy. Your stuff is your stuff and marriage won’t solve your problems. Only you can.

You figure that out early on. You learn not to blame each other for your pain. You learn how to love anyway. Because there is no other choice if you want your marriage to thrive.

But most of all I wish I’d known before getting married just how much marriage would grow me, and all the wonders of being loved so much. 

I would have fretted less and loved a whole lot more. Im far a bigger person than I was before. I embrace all the challenges of sharing a life with my beloved. I wouldnt change anything thats happened up until now. I guess I discovered things just at the right time, after getting married and not before.

.. Join my FREE FACEBOOK GROUP: HAPPINESS PATHFINDERS: Learn how to seek your own love first. 

See ya in our Facebook Community

Love and hugs, xoxo


All works are copyrighted. You may quote me or use no more than a paragraph with a link to the article on my website. Much love. Jo

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How Can I Help You ?

Any happiness or stress management tips, advice or recommendations on my website, is not to be taken as medical advice. If you're struggling with anxiety, feeling low or an illness, visit a doctor or professional medical practitioner, especially before making changes to your current treatment. I urge you research anything and everything on your own before you make any changes. I'm a life coach and teacher. I'm not a doctor, therapist, nutritionist or personal trainer. I share freely share my experiences, my story, my opinions and research findings. It is my legal obligation to tell you I am not God but simply another human being like you, walking a path of trial and error. Kalavati Cafe, and anyone associated to this website or courses, can not be held responsible or liable for any choices you take. 

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