You can have an amazing relationship with your partner that withstands challenges and the test of time.
You can make your marriage more enjoyable, rewarding, and fulfilling. And you can do all this by creating a few positive, daily habits that support a loving relationship.
Take action to strengthen your marriage:
1. Write down your conflicts. Research suggests that writing down your conflicts and arguments can help you build a stronger marriage.
* Consider joining a writing group and discussing your issues. Researchers found that spouses who wrote about their arguments in these types of groups had better relationships. This is because the writing gave them the chance to use perspective while the group offered support.
* If you prefer, you can journal alone about the arguments.
* The key is to write about the argument in a neutral way. Instead of blaming or shaming, strive to focus on an unbiased view of the situation.
2. Hug each other. Physical contact brings you closer together, both literally and emotionally. Researchers have found that hugging releases oxytocin. This hormone uplifts your mood and can strengthen the connection with your spouse.
* Aim for at least two hugs a day with one in the morning and one in the evening. If you can increase this number even more, it will benefit both of you.
* Researchers also point out that your benefits increase with longer hugs, so hug for at least a minute each time.
3. Schedule a consistent date night. Your schedules may be overflowing with work duties and your kid’s recitals or sports games. However, it’s crucial to take the time to spend time together.
* It’s better to have a weekly date night, but even researchers realize that this may be tough for working families. Strive for setting aside time for at least one date a month.
* Your date night is your time together – just you and your partner – so avoid including the kids, friends, or other family members. You also want to avoid distractions from your work or phones. The goal is to focus solely on each other.
* If you’re struggling to think of ideas for your date night, consider doing the traditional movie night. Researchers from the University of Rochester found that going to movies about relationships or couples can help you with your own challenges. By discussing the movie with your partner, you can strengthen your own marriage.
4. Try to connect with your partner’s friends. You don’t have to be involved with every member of your spouse’s social circle, but be friendly with at least several of them.
* Studies show that couples who share the same friends have stronger relationships.
* However, you still want to give each other some space and alone time with friends.
5. Cook with each other. Cooking may be time consuming, but according to research, it can help your marriage. It can also be a fun way to connect.
* Cooking involves sharing a complicated task together. It forces you to work with each other and delegate tasks. It helps you appreciate each other’s talents.
* In addition to cooking at home, you may want to sign up for cooking classes to learn about new dishes together.
6. Spend time away from each other. This may sound just the opposite of what is needed, but think about it, when you first met, you were attracted to each other by who you were. And that person you were was a result of time you spent interacting with others, with the world, learning and discovering things independent of each other.
* Be more interesting to each other. Find new ways of appreciating each other by being apart. Ask yourself, “how would this help my partner, or make them feel joy?” This time away does not have to be for very long, make it for whatever time you feel you have grown a little and can add something to the relationship. Maybe it’s a few hours, a day, a week.
It doesn’t matter so long as the intention is to make the relationship stronger.
And, of course, there is the saying that absence makes the heart grow fonder! You’ll miss them and when you’re together again, it’ll make your reunion that much sweeter.
You can enhance your relationship with simple steps. You have the power to make real change happen. Start today, and enjoy the results!