Although there are many ways to improve your marriage, this list of five things you can do is centered around major red flag issues that can tear your marriage apart.
Common Red Flags
- Lack of mutual respect
- Lack of mutual admiration
- Lack of time together
- Lack of sexual desire for one another
- Not sharing of responsibilities
- Disagreeing upon financial goals
5 Ways to Improve Your Marriage
1. Don't Take Each Other for Granted
If you are taking your spouse for granted because you believe that your partner will always be there for you, you are making a huge mistake.
Take the time and make the effort to be kind, thoughtful, appreciative, respectful, supportive, and affirming towards your spouse. You should also be empathic, and not dismissive, of your spouses thoughts and feelings.
Not taking your spouse for granted means going beyond remembering your anniversary and your spouse's birthday. Not taking your spouse for granted means being tuned in to how your spouse feels and what your spouse thinks. You actively listen without interrupting. You also both show and tell your spouse of your love.
2. Work Together to Improve Your Sex Life
If you don't want to end up as one of the "sexless marriage" statistics, don't put your sex life on the low end of your priority list. Remind yourselves of when you first met and felt those twinges of lust and desire for each other. Leave romantic and suggestive love notes for one another. Flirt with one another. Plan for time alone with one another on a regular basis.
Think seriously about kicking the television out of your bedroom! Showing your spouse how much you love and care often leads to a satisfying and fulfilling sex life.
3. Agree to Do Your Share of Chores Around Your Home
If you want peace, harmony and a clean, organized home, then the two of you need to work together to insure that household tasks are shared equally.
This is even more important if you both work. Things such as keeping financial records, maintenance, shopping, yard work, planning, cleaning, cooking, child care, transportation, and so on are shared responsibilities. Household clutter and messiness can create stress for both of you, so talk about how together you can routinely keep the clutter to a minimum.
4. Talk About Your Finances
When you have money it can come between the two of you if you haven't talked about your financial goals, saving money, and spending money. If your budget is tight, money can create stress and division as you cope with bills and worry. If necessary, attend a financial workshop, talk with a financial planner, learn recommended ways of building a nest egg for emergencies and planning for your retirement. Discuss your finances so the two of you are on the same page on this topic.
5. Simplify Your Lives
Think about the number of hours you each work. Also think about the amount of time you spend on hobbies or home maintenance, volunteering, and the time you want to spend with friends or extended family.
Now compare this to the amount of time you spend with one another. Is it way out of balance? If so, reevaluate how you both spend your time and consider how to simplify your lives whether you are newlyweds, a couple with children, or empty nesters. If you are over worked, over extended, and over tired, you put your marriage at risk. You may even consider downsizing your living space. The idea of downsizing involves more than moving to a smaller home. It is more about attitude than it is about your home.
You must put your marriage first or you may find you won't have one anymore!
*Article updated by Marni Feuerman
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