5 Things You Can Do to Enhance Your Marriage
1. Gratitude for your Partner
Enhance your marriage by expressing gratitude. We have all heard about keeping gratitude journals to increase happiness and reduce anxiety. Try keeping a gratitude journal for your spouse. Everyday list 3-5 things that you are grateful for about that person. You will start to see changes as you show that appreciation, and it will help soften disagreements that may come up.
2. Ask for Needs
It sounds like an easy thing to do, but what usually happens in our relationships is that we get caught up in our expectations for what our partner “should” be doing. Many times I have been working with couples that express frustration because their partner does not notice when they are feeling down, see dishes in the sink and do them, or many other things where they are waiting for their partner to rise and be who or what they need them to be.
The truth is, we are different, and we think differently. It is amazing the results we can get when we speak up and ask for what we need. I have gotten in the habit of letting my husband know when I am not in the best mood, and then being very specific that I need him just to be kind and understanding and not try to fix how I am feeling. As soon as I relay that message, everything goes much smoother. He is relieved and happy to help because he knows how and knows what I need. Asking for your needs helps avoid arguments and often hurt feelings that come when we start accusing our partners of not doing what we need.
3. Focus on your partner, Not you
Find one thing every day that you can do for your spouse that will make them happy. Maybe sending a note, maybe picking up clothes for them, maybe stopping to get that special treat that is their favorite, or just noticing something about them that day. These simple acts help you focus more on the relationship than on yourself. The more you give, the more you will get; and the more you will experience closeness and happiness in your marriage.
4. Weekly Dates
Sometimes life can get busy, and find time for each other can be tough. However, your relationship is essential. Think of how much time and energy you put into dating and falling in love. If you want to keep that spark alive and keep growing, you have to continue to put effort and energy. Whether it is a one-hour lunch date or just some time that you make for each other at the house, make sure you have that set time for only the two of you, at least once a week.
5. Hugs, Kisses, and I love you
Although this may seem like an easy one to do, sometimes our routine or rush gets us out the door before we can hug and kiss our partner goodbye. Put in the effort and get in the habit of hugging and kissing goodbye, at reunions, before bed… It is a fast, simple act that shows your partner you care and gives you a quick reassurance of connection.
And even though your significant other probably already know it, there is power is saying the words “I love you” out loud. Do it on a daily basis, and your marriage will stay stronger and be able to withstand more of the trials that come your way. Touch and affection in your marriage have been researched and proven many times.