When you first buy your dream car, you’re mindful about keeping up with preventative maintenance, car washes and good driving habits. But as time passes, you become more lax about its upkeep. Do you love your car any less? Of course not! Its maintenance is simply no longer top of mind.
It’s human nature to devote an inordinate amount of attention to things that are new, while putting less thought into the familiar. This frequently happens with material things, new year’s resolutions and big life changes. But this habit is also commonplace in relationships. No matter how much we value our most important connections, once the newness wears off, we get comfortable and no longer hold ourselves to the highest of standards. And while this is completely normal, it doesn’t have to be permanent. You can reassess and refocus your energy toward maintaining your relationship with your spouse. Here are three easy ways to refresh your marriage.
- Be Polite
When we’re out and about, most of us are in the habit of exchanging common niceties (i.e. “excuse me,” “please,” or “thank you”) with strangers who cross our paths. Yet when we’re at home, in the company of our spouses, we often fail to practice the same polite habits. Over time, couples grow to rely on implied manners. They assume that their loved ones instinctively know when they are apologetic, grateful, or unintentionally curt. However, being overtly polite can serve as a symbolic reminder of the respect and care that you have for your spouse.
- Showing patience by waiting your turn to speak
- Holding the door open
- Asking instead of demanding
- Offering an apology after making a minor mistake
2. Show More Interest
In the beginning of your relationship, you were eager to know more about each other’s hobbies, interests and daily happenings. But after years of being married, it’s easy to forget the importance of being curious about your spouse. Reignite your passion for getting to know your partner by being intentional about showing more interest. Volunteer to help out with their projects, watch their favorite shows, or read the same books they’re reading. Show that you still care by asking questions about the things they show interest in. Even if you hate their favorite hobby, set your feelings aside now and again, and join in. Doing these things will give you and your spouse an opportunity to spend more time together, create new commonalities, and strengthen your bond.
3. Be Spontaneous
The familiarity of marriage causes many couples to fall into a comfortable daily routine. And although consistency is one of the foundational elements of relationship security, occasional spontaneity can add a healthy dose of fun into your marriage. Try surprising your spouse with a weekend getaway or an unexpected date. You can even catch them off guard with a thoughtful change, like a new hairstyle or updated wardrobe. With a little effort, you can keep your partner on their toes by thinking outside of the box and being spontaneous.
Marriage is special. Your spouse loves and supports you in ways that no one else can. They deserve your best. Use these three tips to refresh your marriage and enjoy the renewed connection that results from it.