I say it over and over again. Marriage doesn’t come easy. Even for the happiest of couples, it is a constant, everyday effort to make your relationship fulfilling and full of love.
For the most part, you have the power to make your relationship thrive or flounder. Making intentional choices to better your marriage is essential for keeping your friendship alive and the passion burning.
Here’s 10 foolproof ways to be more loving towards your spouse.
Forgive everyday– There will be many moments when you feel hurt or disappointed by your significant other. Harboring bitterness or resentment only fuels the fire and increases your likelihood of hostility and lingering anger. Try to remember that keeping those negative emotions pumping through your veins is a defense against feeling broken and hopeless. Forgiveness allows you the opportunity to work through the pain. We are not perfect, nor are our spouses. Forgive their actions and start fresh.
Give a compliment– we often have great things to say about the ones we love but we keep them in our thoughts instead of verbally expressing them. Turn towards your partner and give them a compliment. They yearn to hear it and it will make you feel good to know that you may have just made their day. You might actually get one in return.
Keep a gratitude journal– Instead of focusing on what you don’t have or what you’re missing out on, try being grateful for what you do have. Write a list of gratitude about your spouse and your marriage. When you face difficult times, your journal will be a helpful reminder to get back on track.
Foster romance daily– Physical touch is needed from us all. We all desire some form of affection, intimacy and looks of adoration. Sex is important for a marriage. It is the final culmination towards deep intimacy. Whether it’s a long kiss at the end of the day, holding hands in front of the TV or regular date nights, keep romance alive.
Be best friends– The secret to successful relationships is maintaining a strong bond and friendship. Make time to know your partner’s day-to-day life, hopes and dreams for the future and current individual struggles. By staying compassionate and providing support, you show your partner that you’re there for them, you care about them and you have their best interest at heart.
Affair-proof your marriage– It’s tempting to cozy up to that friendly coworker who seems to be interested in everything you say when things on the home front are struggling. If you’re hiding emails, secretly meeting with members of the opposite sex or thwarting information from your spouse, you’re in a danger zone. Whether physical or emotional, affairs can either rip families apart or take years to mend. If you’re feeling guilty about anything to do with someone that isn’t your significant other, you need to take immediate action so that you don’t do something you might later regret.
Find a shared hobby– Staying active and engaged in something you can do together- separate from kids and other distractions- keeps the mundane at bay. If you enjoy an activity together- whether exercising, fine dining or playing board games- you’ll have something to talk about. Communication will stay active and you’ll stay interested in each other for the long haul.
Talk often– Life is busy, and at the end of the day most of us just want to sit in front of the television and tune out. But we can’t. At least not everyday. Whether it’s scheduled or impromptu, make time to have deep, meaningful conversations. Not about the kids or monthly bills, but about each other.
Give a little– Sometimes you might have to give up some of your wants and needs for the sake of your spouse- even though you don’t want to. Do it anyway. Your turn will come eventually, but for today, make it about your significant other and not about yourself.
Cultivate your daily, sweet rituals– Don’t forget the small things. Say I love you, make your partner a cup of coffee in the morning, send a sweet text, bring home flowers or post a sappy sticky note to their lunch bag. The little things are often forgotten but have so much value.
It sometimes takes hard work, dedication and commitment to intentionally love your spouse. Make it a priority and see your relationship bloom with passion and love.