Issues that arise in marriages can be very complicated. Few issues are simple.
There are, however some very simple ways to keep your relationship positive and help you work your way through a lot of difficult situations.
Use these 7 tips to help you continue to nurture a positive relationship.
- If you want your marriage healthy and positive, you have to really want to keep it that way. You have to decide that the marriage is important in your life and give it the time and attention it needs. Ask yourself daily, “Am I spending enough time and energy on the relationship?”
- Focus on what you like and love about your spouse. Forget the negatives. We truly do get more of what we focus on. If you are having problems, begin focusing on the positive in your relationship and not the negative.
Most importantly, stop when you start to criticize your spouse. Turn your thinking to what you like about them and begin to see how your marriage gets better.
- Kindness matters in marriages. Be kind. Very often, people in relationships treat the people closest to them worse than they treat acquaintances or even total strangers.
Go the extra step first. This week, do something kind for your spouse that you wouldn’t normally do and without expectation of anything in return.
- Show appreciation for your spouse. Make a habit of expressing appreciation. If you do, you’ll find your marriage to be filled with much more happiness and joy. It might be something as simple as “I like your smile” or “Thank you for cooking dinner last night.”
- Ask for what you want. Most people expect the people who are in relationship with them to be mind readers. If you’re expecting others to be psychics, you’re in for a painful ride if you’re in relationship with them. If you want your needs to be met, you have to tell people what these needs are.
- Listen without judging or getting defensive. Be open to the possibility that someone else’s opinion or way of doing things may be just as valid or important as yours.
Just because their way is different, doesn’t make them or you wrong. If you’re constantly judging, being defensive and building walls, you’re not open to possibilities and to the love that is possible between two people.
- Be willing to risk opening your heart and letting your spouse in. We can be in a relationship for many years and still not allow another person to penetrate our walls of protection. If you want to have a marriage that is alive and growing, being willing to risk is a prerequisite.
While these steps will not solve every issue they do lay the groundwork for a strong and healthy relationship.