According to the American
Psychological Association, 40 to 50 percent of U.S. marriages end in
divorce. Believe it or not, one thing that research has
also shown among divorced individuals is that they wished that either they
would have made more of an effort or their ex-spouse would have made more of an
effort to work their marriage out. Some people think that doing the work
requires tons of counseling and retreats—work that some don’t have the time or
money to do. There are a few simple things that you can do to help make your
marriage stronger and happier without having to clear your schedule or break
1. Express Appreciation
Another one of the biggest factors of divorce is insecurity.
If a person doesn’t feel wanted, loved, or appreciated in the relationship, why
would they want to remain in it? That is why expressing your gratitude to your
spouse is so important. Showing your spouse that you’re thankful for simple
things like taking out the garbage or buying groceries can make a ton of
difference in the relationship. By offering a hug, telling someone else what
they did, or simply telling them “thank you,” you’ll make them feel better
about themselves, your opinion of them, and the relationship as a whole.
After being married or in a relationship with someone for so
long, most people believe that they know everything there is to know about
their spouse. This is a common misconception though. People are complex
characters; you can never know everything about a person. This is why it is so
important to talk! This is not limited to verbal communication; communication
can be physical too! So don’t be afraid to open up and tell your spouse how you
feel. Let your wife know you aren’t a fan of meatloaf or tell your husband that
you’re allergic to daisies. I promise it will make things much easier in the
long run and prevent a lot of arguments!
3. Take Breaks
Marriage is a wonderful relationship where, at least the
majority says, you get to spend the rest of your life with your best friend!
Just think about it though: you get tired of being around your best friend
sometimes! That’s why it’s so important to make sure that you have hobbies
outside of your spouse. Some people who enter relationships tend to forget that
they were individuals before the relationship and they can still be unique in
it! Don’t let your inner self get lost! Maybe you love reading, but your spouse
hates books—take a Saturday and just relax in the library or a bookstore! Maybe
you like to fish but your spouse hates the outdoors—grab one of your buddies
and take a trip to the lake! Don’t get us wrong, don’t pack up and leave for
two weeks without telling your spouse, but take a day or even a few hours to
just do you and that will make your relationship so much better!
4. Do Things Together
Now that you have taken a breather from your spouse, it is
time to get back in there and get some quality time in! Go to a movie, out to
eat, take a class together—just do something together! Quality time is
important for couples to develop a closer level of intimacy and have an
all-around happier matrimony!
5. Portray Interest
This can be a tough one for some couples! There is going to
come a time when your spouse is going to introduce you to something they enjoy
or are interested in that you probably won’t care too much about. That’s not something you want to shine a
light all over though. Even if you could care less, try to act as if it
fascinates you and I promise that your relationship will benefit from it. Just
as with open praise, interest, even if it’s a simple curiosity that’s asking
about something they care about—well, your spouse will feel loved and return
the favor to you!
6. Learn to Let Go
Every relationship has arguments and disagreements; that
just comes with the territory. The way you respond to these disagreements,
however, can make a difference in your relationship. As with any casual
relationship, you have to learn that some things just aren’t worth getting
upset and/or holding a grudge over. Allowing yourself to let it go will make
everyone’s life much easier!
7. Put Your Spouse First
When you got married, you made a commitment. Part of that
entails that you have to make sure that your spouse is taken care of. It’s not
just about you and what you want anymore; someone else is going to be impacted
by the choices you make from now on. Taking care of your spouse makes them feel
loved and compels them to return the favor! So before you decide to spend your
savings on that motorcycle, consider your spouse’s feelings, have a discussion
about time and finances, and really get to know and understand what each of you
want—listen first, then be listened to. It will help you avoid an argument,
8. Accept Defeat
This last point comes in handy when it comes to an argument.
Sometimes you will get in an argument with your spouse that simply won’t ever
end! If you want to keep the peace and end all of the fighting, sometimes it is
best to simply wave the white flag. Whether you’re right or wrong, some things
aren’t worth fighting over. Don’t be afraid to admit when you are wrong either.
Owning up to the fact will not only end a world of trouble; it will also help
your spouse to trust and respect you even more than they did before!