No matter how bad OR good your relationship may be, there are always ways to make things better. And sometimes, steps to a better marriage are actually pretty simple.
You may be dealing with some pretty difficult things in life. Circumstances can sometimes be complicated. The thing is, no matter how difficult things are, extending kindness at those times is especially powerful and has the power to turn a moment around for the good.
Will doing simple acts of kindness fix every marital problem? Of course not. But being courteous and thoughtful is a step toward a better relationship.
Consider the following list of things you could start doing TODAY that would increase the quality of your marriage:
- Practice common courtesy. This was one of the first things you learned in Kindergarten because educators know it’s so important in human relationships throughout life. Say “please” and “thank you” and make it a point to express your appreciation every day.
- Beam a little. Tell your spouse when you’re proud of him. When a milestone has been reached, acknowledge the accomplishment.
- Take turns. Take turns choosing restaurants, activities and entertainment. Inquire of your spouse why she made the selection she did. You’ll learn a lot about her interests by enjoying them with her.
- Ask questions. “What’s on your agenda today?” communicates interest and sparks conversation. “How’d the meeting go?” says you’re paying attention to what’s going on in your spouse’s life. “Are you feeling any better today?” tells your spouse you care.
- Stay out of the bedroom … with arguments and disagreements! Keep your bedroom your sanctuary for sleep, fun, romance and love and pick a different place to hash things out.
- Work on yourself. Taking care of yourself, both inwardly and outwardly is a way of expressing love to your spouse.
- Enjoy your friendships. Girls Night Out and Guys Only evenings are important for overall emotional health. Give your spouse your blessing to enjoy those special occasions.
- Keep your promises. If you say you’ll pick up the dry cleaning on the way home, do it. Trust is built brick-by-brick.
- Develop common interests. It could be sports or art museums. Maybe it’s Yoga or gardening. Whatever the interest, share in it together regularly.
- Develop interests of your own. Invest time in doing what jazzes you. When YOU are fulfilled, your spouse benefits, too.
- Hit the hay together. It’s not always possible, but make it your habit to go to bed at the same time.
- Be competitive. Make it your aim to be the first one to be a blessing each and every day. Be the first to pay a compliment. The first to smile. The first to do one little thing you know your spouse would appreciate.
Marriage is a challenge. And life can throw some punches that make relationships more difficult to navigate. But even in the toughest of times, gentleness, kindness and thoughtfulness can pave the way to a peaceful, mutually satisfying relationship. And sometimes, it’s the smallest acts of kindness that get your spouses attention.