As I started writing down my goals and aspirations that I wanted to focus on in the new year, I started reflecting on how I can become a better person — a better wife, mother, daughter, sister & friend. Naturally, my first priority was figuring out new/better ways to show my husband some love. So I started writing and came up with this list.
1. Choose not to react
I admit it. I have a short temper. If I feel like I’m being attacked, I usually react in a defensive manner. I’ve come a LONG way from when my husband and I first started dating in 1999. But Lord knows I still have a ways to go. I promise to take a deep breath and listen to what he has to say before I respond…and be sure to practice replacing disapproval with love.
2. Surprise him in the bedroom
‘Nuff said. It wouldn’t be much of a surprise if I elaborated on it, now would it? I promise to do some thing(s) that will surprise him…in a good way of course (*wink).
3. Pay closer attention to his wants
My husband doesn’t ask for a lot, doesn’t need a lot, or want a lot. Sometimes he casually mentions things here and there that he wants to do and a lot of times, they fall by the wayside due to lack of time, energy, etc. I promise to make it a point to make sure that his wants become a priority in being fulfilled.
4. Embrace his spiritual journey
Over the last couple of years, my husband has been embarking on his own spiritual journey, searching for answers that he wants to understand. When it meant no longer going to church with me or praying with me, I immediately became frustrated and resentful. I really didn’t want to hear anything about what he was reading, researching or watching. But I learned that I needed to take a few steps back, and realize that although he’s my husband, my journey is not his journey and vice versa. I realized that all I could do was continue to pray for him and learn to really “Let go and let God”. I promise to work on learning more about, and embracing his spiritual journey.
5. Apologize more
“There is no love without forgiveness and there is no forgiveness without love” – Bryant H. McGill. My husband is usually always the first to apologize when we have a disagreement. But I’m learning to appreciate the fact that we will always have our differences, and that he deserves the “I’m sorry” just as much as I do. I promise to not only apologize more, but to apologize more lovingly.
6. Tell him why I love him
This sounds typical and probably something that shouldn’t even be on this list. I know my husband loves me with all his heart, and he knows I love him with all of mine. They say “actions speak louder than words”, but sometimes words are just as important. I promise to use more of my words to tell him all of the reasons why I love him.
7. Start a new hobby together
It’s true that once you have kids you have to get creative in how you spend your time together. We love to travel, go bowling, watch a movie together, etc. But in the last five years of birthing and raising kids, we haven’t dedicated any time to finding and enjoying new hobbies. I promise to make sure we revisit this in the coming year.
8. Expand my vegan cooking repertoire
Now that I’ve come to terms with and embraced my husband’s new-found diet, I promise to learn how to cook a full vegan meal (complete with dessert) by the end of the year.
9. Act like his wife…not his mom
Yes, I tend to nag sometimes…occasionally…ok, sometimes a lot. Half of the time I don’t even realize I’m doing it, and I immediately just have to shut myself up. Sometimes he doesn’t wash clothes the way I do, or dress the kids like I want. But I promise to shut up more and nag less.
10. Take interest in his interests
As we’ve matured over the years, our interests have also matured. My husband has taken interest in new things, so I promise to find out more about what excites him so we can get excited together.
11. Verbally express appreciation for him
My husband is not on Facebook, Twitter or any other social media platform, nor does he desire to be. So while I’m always expressing my appreciation for him, to friends and strangers, I promise to make sure that I verbalize it more to him as well.
12. Encourage (read – force) guy time
As I mentioned previously, my husband is a homebody. There were a couple of small leisure trips he was supposed to take last year, and for whatever reason, they didn’t happen. But I understand that he needs and deserves to get away with his boys as much as I do with my girls. So I promise to strongly encourage and assist him in getting away with the guys.
13. Drop everything
There have been plenty of times that I’ve found myself working on my computer, iPad or on the phone, and continue to do so even as my husband is trying to tell me something. He shouldn’t have to compete with anything or anyone, so I promise to just drop everything and give him my undivided attention.
BMWK: What are some other ways that you love your spouse that you can add to this list?