How’s it going? How is married life treating you, really?
Are you having fun? Are you growing closer to your partner? Are you learning new things about each other? Are you and your spouse best friends?
Then you might be doing it wrong.
Hear me out. Marriage is supposed to be a good thing, a gift, and if it doesn’t feel that way to you, then, frankly, you might be doing it wrong. But don’t worry, because I believe that no matter what state your marriage is in at this moment, you can start doing it right, right now.
Here’s a start: if you’re not falling more in love with your spouse every day, start today. Focus on the positive. Be thankful for all of the beautiful things that made you fall in love with them in the first place. Write those things down, then share them with your partner. This is not the time for criticism, this is a time for encouragement. In fact, try to withhold any criticism for a day, a week, a month even. Say nothing negative, and focus on the positive. Just try it, as an experiment, and see what happens.
Show grace. Don’t hold a grudge. And love them actively. Because love is a choice, a verb. Not a feeling. After making the choice, the feelings often follow.
If you’re not best friends with your spouse, start working on that today. Talk. Have a conversation about something other than the kids. Do stuff together. Just hang out. Have a date night. Find a show to binge watch together. Talk about what you’re reading. Laugh. Make silly inside jokes. Cuddle. Play. Send flirty texts. Just have some fun together.
Marriage was never meant to be exhausting, life-sucking, or miserable. Marriage is supposed to be good. Why would you choose to share your life with someone if you didn’t think you could build a peaceful, enjoyable partnership together?
Build. As in, a great marriage takes work. But not in a negative way. Just because something takes effort to achieve, doesn’t mean that the effort is torture. To have a healthy body, you have to work for it. To be a good parent, you have to work for it. And to climb a mountain, you have to work for it. But every step you take brings you to higher plains of beauty.
On that note, a great marriage should include a fun, mutually-satisfying sex life.
(Oh yeah. I went there. And BTW, “mutually-satisfying” means that you both are having a great time.)
But great sex doesn’t just happen. It takes work! So talk about it. Experiment. Laugh. Don’t take sex so seriously. Open up about what you like, what you love, and what you want to try. Make it an adventure! And don’t be too hard on yourself if the new-baby season cools things down a bit. It’s just a season, and intimacy is about more than just the physical. Just try to find creative ways to stay connected during this time and realize that spicier seasons are still on the horizon.
So here’s the deal Married People – marriage is supposed to be fun. Marriage is supposed to be you and your best friend sharing a fabulous adventure together for the rest of your lives.
And the next chapter of that adventure starts today.