Romantic proposal, beautiful wedding, unbelievable honeymoon…then the rest of your life. Buckle up for the ride! Marriage is fun! BUT it takes intent to stay connected and happy!
First, let’s start with expectations. Marriage will not always be rainbows and unicorns, and that is OK! You commit to each other to make it work – so this is where the work comes in for BOTH of you!
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3 ways to stay connected with your spouse:
1. Find your spouse’s “love language”. If you have not read Dr. Gary Chapman’s book “The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts”, then do it. It will help you better understand what makes you feel loved, and how your spouse feels loved. This is so important to understand to be sure you are speaking each other’s languages. For example, I could make my husband’s lunch for him every night to show him how much I love him expecting him to feel loved by this act of service. If “acts of service” is not his love language, then it is like speaking a foreign language. My acts of service may not translate to him feeling loved as it does in my mind. Doesn’t make sense? Even the more reason to pick it up today and read it! Even better – read it together and talk about it as you go!
2. No electronics evenings. Schedule an evening to do something together at home without TV, movies, or phones! You will naturally talk more and be reminded of things you like to do together! This one can be so helpful when you have kids. It is not always easy to get out of the house, but you can make an effort in the comfort of your own home! Ideas on what to do? Play a card game, play scrabble, do a puzzle, workout together, make a dessert or meal together… or anything else you both like to do! We are competitive in our house, so a little friendly game (where I win) is perfect!
3. Monthly date nights. This may sound easy, but life gets busy and a month goes by FAST! Timing can be tough – I GET IT! Consider daytime and evenings as options. If childcare is an issue in the evenings and you have childcare during the day, consider taking a day of vacation to spend it with your spouse! Prefer evenings? Schedule a family member or babysitter to come over for an evening out! If budgets are tight consider trading off with a neighbor or friend. You could keep their kids so they can go out, and then they return the favor! While nights out with couples is super fun, make sure you schedule time for just the two of you! Ideas on what to do? How about an uninterrupted meal together? Add on to the day or evening with wine tastings, museum browsing, shopping, walking at a park, cooking class, dance lessons, roller or ice skating – whatever it is make sure you take turns doing things you both like to do!
As life gets busy and stressful even more reason to make an extra effort to stay connected! Staying connected is much easier than getting reconnected! Have fun love birds :)!