Here are three tips for keeping your marriage healthy and thriving…
1. Emphasis on Friendship.
Friends do things together; they look forward to different activities and time sharing ideas and perspectives. Just as it was when you were dating, decide to set aside time to connect. The busyness of home life is a reality to manage, but it can be done. Budget for dinner and a movie, secure a sitter and make it happen. Bonus tip – consider what your mate loves and do a little research, be armed with some relevant facts to stir conversation. For example, if your husband loves football, Google “super bowl favorites” and then open conversation with, “I’m putting my money on the Niners again this year.”
2. Be Good Company.
Be consistently positive. Negative outlooks and complaints are the fastest way I know to douse a romantic ember. Being positive means offering ideas and perspectives that foster hope, possibilities and contemplate deeper meanings. We all battle tendencies to invite doldrums into our relationship space by dwelling on what’s wrong. Life can be overwhelming, but looking for the silver lining in all circumstances is always a best practice when it comes to being good company.
Being respectful means among other things honoring the ideas, interests, and perspectives of another even when disagreeing. Leaving name calling behind, your happiness will grow as your ability to listen, consider and disagree with manners grows. You don’t have to agree on everything, just respect the idea that there are other ways of looking at things.
Be Attentive – You really cannot look at the TV and at the same time say, “I AM listening.” Conversely, starting conversations with “Do you have a minute?” or “I’d have something I’d like to share with you,” provide segue’s that are hard to resist. You must create – not demand – opportunity for your other to redirect their attention to you.
3. The Amazing Bliss Kiss
Find moments for a Bliss Kiss. It is easy it is to engage mindlessly in routine and habit… this includes the quick hello or goodbye or goodnight kisses… otherwise known as “pecking.” Kisses need to be held high in the Relationship Thrive Manual. Wikipedia offers this: “Lips are a visible body part at the mouth of humans and many animals. Lips are soft, movable, and serve as the opening for food intake and in the articulation of sound and speech. Human lips are a tactile sensory organ, and can be erogenous when used in kissing and other acts of intimacy.”
Just as kissing was part of the courting ritual, marital bliss is fostered when we are intentional about the magic of physical connection. Make a decision to say no to pecking! Next time you run out the door, stop, face your mate, let your lip to lip kiss linger long enough to remember how much there is to appreciate in a sweet, three second moment.