I must admit one of my guilty pleasures is relationship-focused reality TV. I am hooked on Married at First Sight. It is such an interesting concept and yet an opportunity to learn so much about relationships. In a recent episode, the newlywed couples rated their marriages. Of course, there were hurt feelings and surprise reactions to the responses. But it is an interesting question to ask when you think about it. If you had to give your marriage a score, from happy to troubled, what would it be? If you’re closer to troubled, it is time to start thinking about the actions that must be taken to get you closer to the happy end of the scale. In this article, we will explore tips for troubled relationships.
How Would You Rate Your Marriage? Happy or Troubled? | Tips for Troubled Relationships
In This Article:
- Why Rate Your Marriage
- Effective Communication
- Intimacy and Connection
- Making Time for Quality Time
- Disagreeing Agreeably
Why Rate Your Marriage
The first of my tips for troubled relationships is rating your marriage. Rating your marriage is an opportunity to recognize your strengths and to also notice where improvements need to be made. It helps to hold you and your spouse accountable for your actions and aims to get you to a space that makes you both happy. Scoring your marriage on a scale of 1to 10 is not about comparing your relationship to anyone else’s, but more about being the best couple you can be to one another. It is about setting relationship goals and measuring your actions against those goals. Assessing your marriage is an activity couples should do pretty frequently to make sure you are constantly striving for a healthy relationship.
Because your relationship is unique, what matters most is also unique. As you think about your rating, also think about the relationship components that you and your spouse value most. Here are a few key relationship ingredients you can consider.
On a scale from 1 to 10, with 10 being you are perfect communicators, many couples find themselves struggling to hit that mark. Effective communication means a variety of things. For example, you complete your conversations, meaning no one walks away when it feels uncomfortable. You also listen actively and acknowledge what you both have heard. And lastly, you make sure conversations are always inclusive of both partner’s thoughts, voices, and ideas. If you and your partner are strong in this area, you have earned a high rating on the scale. One of my biggest tips for troubled relationships is: If you need work, take action and do that work.
Intimacy and Connection
Intimacy might be more challenging to rate unless it is clear what your marriage goals are in this area. Rating the intimacy and connection means both you and your partner have determined what it looks like in your relationship. For some couples, intimacy is much deeper than committing to have sex at least 3 nights a week. It’s about the emotional closeness and connection, gentleness with words and actions, touch, and passion that exists in your relationship outside of the bedroom.
Making Time for Quality Time
Another element to score your marriage on is the investment of time. Not just being in one another’s presence, but making it a point to enjoy one another’s company as often as possible is one of my big tips for troubled relationships. That includes having some fun and being spontaneous. A high score in this area means you are intentional about the “quality” in the time you spend together. Couples who are strong in this area recognize how important it is to make their spouse a priority in their lives, no matter what else is on the to-do list.
When you think about rating your relationship in this key area, there are a few things to consider. First, disagreeing doesn’t mean anything is wrong in a relationship. It is actually quite healthy to discuss different points of view and come to a resolution. There should, however, be a set of agreed upon rules to your disagreements. Creating a safe and quiet space that allows both partners to be heard, is key. Agreeing to pause and regroup if needed and not raising your voices during disagreements are other rules to keep in mind.
It might seem a bit unorthodox to rate your marriage. But being aware and in tune with where you are as a couple and where you want to go is healthy for a marriage. It is about setting goals and continuing to encourage one another until you arrive in that happy place.
BMWK, how would you rate your marriage? What are you willing to do to get to that next highest score?