Friday, August 22, 2008

Top Ten Tips for Marriage Maintenance

1. Have regular State of the Marriage discussions. Talk about what is good that you want to make sure to continue as well as the hopes, needs or dreams that you have that might make it better.

2. Treat each other in the ways that you want to be treated yourself. Even if your spouse is having a rough day or has “forgotten” to be nice, continue to be kind and gentle and wait for it to come back to you.

3. Do not “sweep things under the rug”. If there are things that are bothering you in the marriage, or disagreements that you have with your spouse, think about them carefully. Decide if they truly are small things and ones that you can really let go of, then do so. If not, talk out loud with your spouse (not others) about your thoughts and feelings.

4. Try to see disagreements in each other’s eyes.

5. Say “I love you” in different ways every day, with words, your eyes and your actions. Show clear signs of physical affection.

6. Have time for fun. Be sure to laugh and play together on a regular basis.

7. Respect your partner and his or her ideas. You do not have to agree with them in order to respect them. Listen carefully to her/his thoughts and feelings, even if they feel unfair to you. You will have time to express you thoughts and feelings later as well.

8. Have a date every week, even if you never leave home.

9. Find ways to talk every day. Check in with each other about what is happening in your lives. Look for new and different facts about your spouse’s day.

10. Say at least one positive or appreciative thing about your partner every day.

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