Do you want to improve your marriage this year?
I’m going to tell you what to watch out for along with specific tips.
One small change, applied consistently, can dramatically improve your marriage. Of course, the trick is consistency. :)
Just think: changing the heading of a plane or boat by 5 degrees over a 1,000 mile journey will cause the final destination to be 87 miles away from the original! From New York to LA would be a 250 mile difference! Or think of that little river which ultimately carved the Grand Canyon.
Consistency is the problem: most people don’t see results fast enough and just “give up”.
And sometimes people try to change MANY things at the same time, which takes a lot (I mean a LOT) more energy, and again: most people give up.
The trick (especially if you’re working without a coach or counselor) is to pick one (yes, ONE) area to improve and really throw yourself into making it better.
The six most impactful areas to improve your marriage are:
Each marriage is unique (and sometime each partner sees it differently!) so you have to decide which will have the best impact for YOU.
Here are some tips for each one!
Connection Lack of connection is especially problematic today where we’re always multi-tasking and distracted with our phones. Yet feeling real connection is fundamental to experiencing love and so it’s absolutely crucial!
Tip: have a rule like "cellphones go in a drawer for 30 minutes every night while we talk, play a game or maybe watch some TV together (don’t forget to snuggle!)
Communication You’ve got to understand your partner as much as you need them to understand you to get what you want and need. Don’t assume that they see things the same way you do or even have the same definitions! (I know my wife and I have very different ideas about what “soon” means!)
Tip: Get clear on what you really want and then be specific about it when telling your partner. It also doesn’t hurt to gently check that they heard and understood you!
Conflict Resolution Every long-term couple will have their share of fights, the trick is in preventing the fights from spiraling out of control as well as getting back to a “good place” when a fight comes up.
Tip: If you or your partner are starting to fight then take a breath, remember how important they are to you, take their hand, look them in the eyes and say “I love you, let’s not fight about this. Help me understand what you’re really upset about here”.
Partnership The foundation of every marriage is working together and trusting each other, especially around money and chores.
Tip: If there’s upset about money then work out a budget together and stick to it; if there’s upset about chores then collaboratively write down everything you both do (so it’s clear to both of you) and work out a responsibility list that each of you agrees to.
Sex Life A healthy sex life is both the life blood of a marriage as well as the “cherry on top”. Sadly it’s an area where couples are often least likely to talk to each other about.
Tip: Is the quality and quantity of sex fulfilling to BOTH of you? Talk to each other and find ways to make sure you both get your needs met. Once there you can begin to explore ways to make it even better (e.g. flirting during the day, planning a sexy getaway, etc.)
Happiness Personal happiness is key to a happy marriage. We all have bad days and even challenges that can last for days or weeks, but a chronic lack of happiness will be a burdon to your partner and marriage as much as it is to you (although perhaps in a different way). Happiness will make it easier to deal with mini-crises (like burning dinner) as well as bigger ones (like losing a job).
Tip: Happiness is a choice. Something external can help us connect to our happiness but it’s ultimately our own responsibility to choose it, generate it and and express it.
Life is an adventure, live in love!
For more help on creating a thriving marriage check out the Thriving Marriage! System today!