Is your marriage in need of repair? Here are 3 simple ways to strengthen your marriage and get the most from your partner.
Are you worried about the fate of your marriage? Do you and your partner argue frequently? Does your partner seem to ignore your ambitions, wants and needs? You’re not alone. If your marriage needs extra help or you’re just curious, a few adjustments can make your relationship peaceful, exciting, passionate and long lasting. Try these three ways to make your marriage work.
1. Make Cognitive Room for Your Marriage.
Ignorance is not bliss. Many marriages simply fail due to the lack of attention of details of their partner’s life. One or both partners may only have a slight sense of the other’s pleasures, displeasures, fears and stresses. The husband may love football, but the wife couldn’t tell you who his favorite team is. He doesn’t remember her favorite flowers or the work project that is keeping her up at night. Quite opposite, emotionally intelligent couples are exceptionally familiar with one another’s world.
Focus and make a point to remember major events in each other’s past. Continue to renew information, details and emotions as you move forward in life together. You can start by asking questions such as;
- Name two of my closest friends
- Name one of my hobbies
- What is the date of our anniversary?
- What do I fear the most?
- What is my worst childhood experience?
2. Re-discover – Look into Your Past – Visualize
Learn from your own history to re-discover fondness and admiration. It’s not complicated to boost positive feelings towards each other. Even deeply suppressed positive feelings can surface by thinking and talking about events and memories of your first encounters together.
Close your eyes and breathe deep, go back to the time when you treasured your partner.
What about your partner attracted you in the first place? When you recognize and openly discuss positive qualities of your partner and your marriage, your connection is strengthened and wired for happiness. This makes it much easier to address any issues your relationship may have and introduce positive change.
Openly discuss the following together;
- What are five things you appreciate about your partner?
- How did the two of you meet?
- What were your first impressions of each other?
- What made your partner stand out from the rest?
- What is a good time for you as a couple? Has this changed over the years?
- Have you stopped doing things together that bring joy? Explore these with each other.
Now, close your eyes and go deep within your mind – name ten qualities you cherish in your partner. For each quality recall a time when your partner displayed it. Say “I’m really fortunate to be with my partner.”
3. Breathe, Listen, Build Trust.
Often times when a relationship is going through a rough time, one partner might not hear the plea of the other. This happens because the plea may come out negative or distorted from body language, tone of voice and choice of words. For example, Sonia might say to her husband Robert “It wouldn’t kill you to help with the dishes tonight, would it?” Robert doesn’t hear Sonia’s plea to help with the dishes. Instead he hears disapproval and criticism. So of course, he responds to defend himself “I’ll help with the dishes when you start working late night hours to pay the bills like me.” from there the dispute intensifies. So, before you respond to your partner, take 5 deep breaths and search for the plea hidden in your partners harsh words. Respond by saying “I want to respond to you positively, can you please tell me what you need right now from me, I really want to know.”
Happily married couples are not smarter or better. They have however found a way to keep their negative thoughts and feelings about each other from overwhelming their positive ones. They embrace the needs and ambitions of each other and are emotionally intelligent. Once your marriage gets set at a more positive level, it will be harder to knock it off course.