Want to be a better husband or wife? Try implementing a few of these ideas into your relationship.
1. Be encouraging: attempt to catch your spouse doing something good at least once a day and recognize them for it.
2. Be forgiving: this is one of the keys to a successful relationship but it also can be extremely difficult to master. Work on it.
3. Validate emotions: don’t shut down your spouse by telling them “not to feel that way” or attempting to fix the problem, but instead work to better understand the emotions they are expressing.
4. Be empathic: we love better when we can understand the rationale behind irrational behavior. Uncovering the reasons (fears, past hurts) behind your spouse’s negative actions can go a long way in helping you deal with the pain they can cause.
5. Slow down: stop being reactive to their negative behavior and slow everything down so you can respond without adding fuel to the fire.
6. Be respectful: kidding remarks and little digs can be the sign of passive-aggressive behavior. Be sure to tame your tongue and monitor what comes out of your mouth.
7. Do the little things: leave them a message with mirror chalk on the bathroom mirror; drop a card into their briefcase; bring them their favorite chocolate bar; there are a thousand little things you can do to demonstrate you are thinking of them.
8. Engage in non-sexual touch: show your spouse you desire them even when sex is not involved.
9. Be present: it is easy to be in the same room but still be miles away. Make an effort to put everything else aside and focus solely on your spouse several time throughout the day.
10. Pray: spend time everyday praying for your spouse. Also set aside time to pray together.