3 Ways to Make Your Spouse Happy

BY: - 26 Apr '18 | Marriage

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We’ve all heard it said that no one can make you happy. Or, in other words, we are responsible for our own happiness. But let’s not front. At least for me, I know I’d be lying if I didn’t expect my relationship with my husband to deliver the kind of happiness that makes me glad that I married him. If my marriage didn’t come with an opportunity for true happiness, I’d have to wonder what’s the point. You know what else? My husband feels the same way. Each of us has a spoken as well as an unspoken expectation that we will actively seek ways to make each other happy.

Of course, happiness looks different to him than it does to me. In some ways, it’s like learning each other’s love language. Once I learned what will bring a smile to his face, I started doing those things. But for our marriage to last, we each have to go a little deeper. That’s what I want to focus on in this article…deep-rooted happiness. So, what are some ways you can make your spouse happy for a long, long time? Here are three things that work for our relationship and I hope they work for yours as well.

Actively instill a sense of self-worth.

When I look in the mirror, I may not always like what I see. When I write an article, I may not like the way it turned out. When I speak to my kids, I may not be the nicest person. But, I’m my worst critic. If you’re anything like me, you are yours.

When my husband tells me I’m beautiful, he chases away my ugly. When he touches my body and embraces my curves, stretch marks, and wrinkles, he keeps me feeling young. When he backs me up on a punishment for the kids, he strengthens my foundation as a mother. When he encourages me to accept a challenge I might think is too tough, he demonstrates his belief in me. All of these let me know he is into me. He is actively engaged in my heart and mind and knows how easily I can devalue myself. So, he flips the script. He makes me feel worthy and my efforts worthwhile. Yes, it makes me happy. Do the same for your spouse and it will make them happy too.

Make them feel at home.

When my husband gets home from work, I’m usually already there to greet him. Now, it might sound corny to you, but no matter where I am, I usually stop what I’m doing when I hear the sound of the door opening. When he enters the house, I’m standing there facing him, giddy like a school girl. I jump up and down and in a sing-song voice express how happy I am that he’s home. I greet him with a hug and a kiss. If you know me, you know that’s how I roll. My man loves it and misses it when it’s not there. The tone of his voice tells me he’s happy to be home. I can almost feel him shaking off the stress of the day.

What makes your spouse happy to come home? What kind of greeting do they get from you when they walk through the door? That greeting is often followed by a nice meal, whether I cooked it or not, and an opportunity to relax for a bit before we talk marriage, and kids, and everything else. Doing this for my husband makes me happy. Figure out what it takes to make your spouse happy to be home and make it happen.

Refuse to keep score.

I enjoy giving to my husband. He enjoys giving to me. Parents enjoy giving to their children. There is joy in giving. In relationships, however, the moment one of you starts to keep score, the thrill is gone. So, give, encourage, and serve your spouse expecting nothing in return. In a healthy relationship, reciprocation may not always come right away, but it comes.

On the flip side, we all have character flaws. Don’t keep score of those either. They take a lifetime to change. But in marriage, that’s what you signed up for…a lifetime. Character change and growth will come and it will bring happiness to you both. So put the scorecards away, and just be happy.

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It’s true. Your spouse isn’t responsible for your happiness. But it sure helps to have them be a part of it. By focusing on these three things, you will be well on your way to the deep-rooted happiness you crave.

BMWK, what are you doing to make your spouse happy?

About the author

Joann Fisher wrote 154 articles on this blog.

Joann Fisher has been a writer and editor for both print and online newpapers and magazines for the last 10 years. She now serves as a Writer/Editor at BMWK and lead Editor for The Joy Network.

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7 Simple Trust Building Exercises for Your Marriage

BY: - 7 May '18 | Marriage

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If you’re anything like me, growing up, you heard “trust is easy to lose and hard to regain.”  Have you found this to be true?

It can be challenging for some spouses to place all their faith into their spouse.

Sometimes, a lack of trust is a result of not so favorable life experiences even without any major hurtful betrayals occurring.  However, if you add a betrayal to the equation, you can certainly expect it to be even harder to regain trust…but not impossible.

For the sake of the marital union, both spouses must genuinely partner up as a true team to not only heal and restore, but nurture the day-to-day situations to intentionally promote trust.

No matter what level of trust you and your spouse may have, the following trust exercises for couples will help you both feel that much more comfortable with one another and establish or expound upon your foundation of trust.

Start Off Sitting Face-to-Face

In a world full of distractions this basic but effective method communicates that your spouse has your undivided attention. Use this for any future conversations big or small and watch the subtle difference it will make.

Hold Your Spouse’s Hand

When you have something on your mind big or small that you are getting ready to share with your spouse, set a tone of intimacy and union by holding hands.

Touch Tenderly

Connect first, communicate second. Engage with one another in your own way.  Do what makes you both feel comfortable and cared for while being mindful to be sweet, soft, and loving with one another.

Soft Eye Contact

Sit at eye level with one another, get comfortable, and softly gaze into each other’s eyes for five minutes. The primary benefit besides building trust that comes from this exercise (along with emotional connection), is that unanticipated emotions surface that tends to lead to intimate conversations allowing that emotional connection that builds trust.

If you and/or your spouse find it difficult to do this, then it might be revealing an area of opportunity for deeper intimacy.

Terms of Endearment

Share special terms of endearment with your spouse.  For example, my term of endearment for my husband is “Luv Bug.”

Try to create something unique for your spouse, but you will want to keep it simple. You can use the classics such as “honey” or “my love” which still go a long way in helping your spouse understand you still care deeply about them. It’s also a great way to set the tone for any talk – you’re not attacking your spouse, you’re discussing how to have a closer, stronger marriage.

Gratitude Game

Think of the movie “Why Did I Get Married.” Taking turns, remind one another what you love about each other that helped lead you to the altar.

Set a timer and take turns, each rattling off a list of 10 things, or you can alternate thought for thought until you’ve exhausted your thoughts for that time (you will have plenty more for later).

This exercise supports your spouse in his/her knowledge and being reminded that there is a surplus of things that you love about them; then they will have more mental and emotional life preservers to hold on to as they conquer internal stinking thinking.

Create Consistency

Trust is built on reliability and consistency…so what can you can do to build trust? Be reliable and consistent.

There is no activity that will give you and your spouse immediate trust in a matter of minutes, but here is the next best activity…ask your spouse what things are there that you do that help them feel cared for, nurtured, safe, and last, but certainly not least, loved.  Perhaps you can schedule a weekly date night and show up on time; or, clarify which household responsibilities are yours and do them without being asked.  Always be honest and transparent with your thoughts and emotions and allow your spouse full access to your internal world.

Now make an intentional effort every day to do one of those things to the best of your ability.  If you can’t do something every day, then maybe once a week or bi-weekly but the key to remember and DO is…BE CONSISTENT!

Just like love takes times, building trust takes time and is not an overnight accomplishment.  Building trust requires repetition that becomes a habit.  The above suggestions will certainly help bring a deeper closeness and sense of connection in your marriage, but understand trust needs time to establish the foundation of your marriage.  Send this article to your spouse letting him/her know you would like to try these out. Take baby steps towards your increased sense of connection and your marriage will flourish…in time.

BMWK, are you ready to build trust in your marriage?

About the author

Da-Nay Macklin wrote 57 articles on this blog.

Coach Da-Nay Macklin is a Certified Christian Life & Relationship Coach, founder of the Courageous Conquerors Mastermind and Author of Love After Adultery: The Breakthrough Journey of the Brokenhearted Available on Amazon She is one of the nation’s leading experts on infidelity and a thought leader on maximizing potential as she assists couples and individuals to live life by design and not default. Da-Nay has been has been featured on the Oprah Winfrey Network’s show Unfaithful: Stories of Betrayal after successfully navigating adultery in her marriage, and named one of the 15 most powerful women on the south side of Chicago. She now resides in Charlotte, NC with her loving husband and daughter.

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