Every relationship has some really great moments. Especially in the beginning. Why else would you keep dating them? Over time, the high points in the relationship can fade. Without being careful, the relationship can become boring. Routine. Even boring. It doesn’t have to stay boring! These 9 tips can help improve your marriage!
1) Improve Your Marriage by Talking
This might seem obvious, and on the surface it is. We talk to people around us all the time. At work, at the gas station, and at home. But I don’t mean make small talk. Or plan out the week. No, talk to your partner about what is going well. What you wish you could do differently. Talk about your hopes and dreams. Talking will improve the sense of connection you have with your partner.
2) Compliment Your Partner
Remember the last time you bought a car? You probably saw other cars with the same color – or make and model – all over the place. It’s not like there were suddenly that many more cars like yours. Instead, our brains are wired to look for what we are used to seeing. If things seem, well, blah, in your marriage look for the positives. This will help you see more ways the relationship is going well.
Don’t just end there! Tell your partner what you appreciate about them. We all like to hear things we are doing well. So let them know! That compliment may be just what they needed to hear that day.
3) Spend Time With Your Partner
Sure, you might be married for 5 years, or 30. Or you might work 12 hour days. Don’t let life slip by and impact your relationship. Plan time each week to simply spend time with each other.
It doesn’t have to be complicated. Simply sitting next to your partner can let them know you care about them!
4) Improve Your Marriage With A Common Vision
Imagine a canoe on the water. The person in front is paddling forward, and the person in back is paddling backwards. At best, they won’t go anywhere. At worst, they will keep turning in circles.
Paddling in two directions happens when there isn’t a common destination. Or goal. The same thing can happen in a relationship. Without a common goal for the relationship, what is there to work towards? On the other hand, a common goal can bring the couple together. If for no other reason: so both people meet that goal. The process of working towards a common goal can also help bring a sense of unity to any relationship.
6) Improve Your Relationship with Physical Contact
People overthink this a lot. We are wired to be social and physical people. To varying degrees, we all need physical touch. Imagine your favorite athlete scoring the winning point. That athlete’s teammates are probably going to celebrate the win in some way. I can imaging a lot of high-fives, jumping into each other, etc. There is a physical piece to the celebration. And that is normal.
The same thing happens in relationships. Imagine absolutely loving your partner, but never touching. No kissing. Or holding hands. Or making contact while giving them the car keys. No contact at all. Eventually you or your partner will probably think something is wrong. Finding small ways to make physical contact – even a touch to the arm – can go a long way in letting your partner know you care about them.
7) Improve your Marriage by Giving Gifts
And I don’t just mean to get roses when you mess up. Finding small things for your partner that they appreciate can go a long way. It can show that in the middle of your busy day, well, you thought of them. When it is a meaningful gift, it also shows you understand your partner on a deeper level.
8) Find Ways to Help Your Partner
Think about your partner’s day. What is one thing you can do to make their day easier? Or a little bit less stressful? How can you do that? Helping your partner can send the message “You are not alone! I am here to help!” This is especially true when they are having a bad day. Or the relationship is strained. It doesn’t have to be something big. Simply watching the kids for 5 minutes or helping to vacuum can have a huge impact.
9) Date Your Partner Again
When is the last time you went on a date? No, Chick-Fil-A for dinner last night with the kids doesn’t count. A quite, thoughtful date where your partner knows they are important to you. If I had to guess, you probably dated each other when you first met – and the relationship was going great.
Dating can provide the time together, good conversation, and, depending on the venue, even common goals you two can work towards.
Don’t just use this list like a check list. *CHECK* “That was 1-9. My marriage is better now!” It can take time and consistency. Especially when there is a lot of conflict and arguing. If you find that it is difficult to follow through with these suggestions, or that your partner isn’t responding, marriage counseling may be needed to remove other roadblocks to tan improved marriage.