If you can relate and are committed to taking steps to improve your relationship, you will love the ideas I am sharing today. While I am no expert in marriage, I am on my own personal journey to rekindle my relationship with my hubby and get some romance back in our marriage.
1. First things first. Get interested in your spouse again. What makes them tick? What are they struggling with in life right now? What excites them? What means the most to them? Interests? Hobbies? You get my point. Get a degree in learning about your spouse - maybe you need to start with just a grade school diploma in learning about your spouse or maybe you are already at the college level. No matter how much you know, you can always learn more.
2. Know their love language. This is one thing you will hopefully learn from #1. What is a love language? It is how someone most feels loved. My personal love language is kind of a tie between quality time and gifts. My husband's love language is words of affirmation. Often, we love others with our own love language, because we know it makes us feel special. But, when you learn to speak your spouse's love language, it can have a much greater impact on helping them feel special. I can speak from experience on this one. When my hubby and I learned each others' love language, it was a game-changer.
3. Date night in. When you have little kids, it costs a lot to have a date night out. Not only does it cost a lot of money, it costs a lot of stress. If you are still breastfeeding, like I am, then it can really become a pain in the butt. I know it is not nearly as fun as getting out of the house and away from any chance of kid interruptions, but sometimes it is a necessity. When you do not have access to many babysitters or do not have the funds, you can still have a fun date night in. This weekend, I am going to attempt this. Here are a few ideas I am using this weekend:
- waiting until after the kids go to bed to have my hubby's favorite dinner: pizza. Recently, Smart Flour Foods sent me their new pizza varieties. We are excited to try them this weekend! These are not your average frozen pizzas either. Made with an ancient-grain based crust and certified gluten free, each pizza is free of preservatives and artificial ingredients, made with real mozzarella and provolone cheese that is free of rGBH (recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone), and topped with hand-selected uncured meats that are free of nitrites and nitrates. It is always a bonus when your splurge is a healthier splurge.
- feed each other - sounds weird. I am an adult. I can feed myself. But let's try it. It might be romantic, or at least funny.
- grab a blanket and head to the backyard for some stargazing and...maybe some other fun.
- color together. We do this as a family, but you could do it with just your spouse. Plenty of time for good conversation and a great way to relieve stress.
5. Forgive as you would like to be forgiven. Yes, I know it is hard to move past the fact that your spouse just did that thing you hate for the 4,000th time. I know it is easy to say I would never do that. But, we do. We do annoy our spouses. We say and do things that really hurt them. We are selfish. We hurt them intentionally and unintentionally. And we can't move past these things if we are not forgiven. Marriage will crumble without forgiveness by each person. Love as you want to be loved.
6. Love your spouse as much as or more than you love your kids. Check out the post, Do You Love Your Kids More than Your Husband, for more thoughts on this critical one.
That is just the beginning. What are your ideas for keeping your marriage a priority with all those littles running around?