As hosts of the Kickass Couples podcast, we’ve seen firsthand the positive impact that implementing simple strategies can have on a marriage. The start of a new year is the perfect time to take a step back and assess what’s working and what’s not in your relationship, and to make a plan for how to improve and grow together in the year ahead.
Here are 10 simple strategies that I recommend to help couples strengthen their marriage in the new year:
- Make time for each other: It’s easy to get caught up in the demands of daily life, but it’s important to make time for your partner and prioritize your relationship. Schedule regular date nights and specific quality conversation times to connect on a regular basis.
- Communicate openly and honestly: Good communication is essential for any strong relationship. Make an effort to listen actively to your partner and speak openly and honestly with radical candor about your thoughts, feelings, and needs.
- Practice gratitude: Focusing on the positive aspects of your relationship can help build resilience and strengthen your connection. Make an effort to regularly-at least daily, express appreciation and gratitude for your partner and the things they do for you and your family. Speaking the gratitude or putting it in writing is critical for your partner to be able to experience how you feel about them.
- Seek out new experiences: Trying new things together can bring excitement and novelty to your relationship. Consider planning a trip, taking a class, or trying a new hobby together where neither of you have the upper hand.
- Prioritize physical intimacy: Physical intimacy is an important part of any relationship, and making time for it can help build closeness and connection. Don’t let the demands of daily life get in the way of this important aspect of your relationship. Physical intimacy obviously includes sexual intimacy but it doesn’t have to! A hug, hand on a shoulder, a brief, loving massage all convey that you are there loving and supporting without the requirement for sex.
- Seek support: It’s normal for couples to face challenges and conflicts at times. Don’t be afraid to seek support from a therapist or relationship coach to help you work through any issues that may arise together,or, individually.
- Make your partner a priority: It’s easy to get caught up in the demands of work, family, and other commitments, but it’s important to make your partner a priority and show them that they matter to you by making them one of your first investments of time and attention each day
- Practice forgiveness: Holding onto resentment and grudges can be toxic to a relationship. Practice forgiveness and let go of any negative feelings that may be holding you back. When you gaze upon your partner, you want it to be with love and adoration-not resentment or contempt.
- Set goals together: Setting shared goals and working towards them together can help build a sense of teamwork and partnership. Consider setting goals related to your relationship, as well as personal and professional goals.
- Practice kindness and generosity: Small acts of kindness and generosity can go a long way in building a strong, healthy relationship. Make an effort to do things for your partner without expecting anything in return, and watch your relationship grow and flourish. Continue to ask yourself the question :’What more can I do for my spouse now?’
By implementing these strategies, you and your partner can start the new year off on the right foot and set the stage for a stronger, more fulfilling relationship in the year ahead.
Until next time. Remember, happily ever after doesn’t just happen. It’s on purpose.