7 Ways to Nurture Your Marriage
In no particular order, here are some ideas to try within your marriage! Maybe some of them are obvious and maybe some of them you haven’t heard before. Only being one year into marriage, what do I have to offer?! I don’t know… cherry pick or try all, I can say these have worked for Kurtis and I so far!
No technology at the dinner table.
I am starting with this one because Kurtis and I have done this since the day we realized we had romantic feelings for each other. Dinner has always been a sacred moment for us and there was never a reason to be checking our phones at the dinner table. After spending all day away from each other, dinner is a way for us to come together and share things about our day! You are not missing anything on social media for an hour, I promise.
“Is it a 10?”
I honestly can’t remember where Kurtis got this idea from but we occasionally call in the “is it a 10?” rule. If there is an item we want, something we want our partner to do, etc. we sit back and analyze the situation by placing it on a scale of importance. If Kurtis tells me something is an 8 or above, I will shut my mouth and trust that this particular thing is important to him. It not only allows your partner to realize significance, but it forces you to assess whether or not something really IS that important to you. BUT this system cannot be abused. Be honest.
Date Night Friday!
Something we learned fairly early was NEVER STOP DATING. Let me say it louder for the people in the back… NEVER. STOP. DATING. Just because you now have some new shiny metal on your finger does not mean that you can sit back and coast. My husband and I make it a habit to change up our scenery and try a new restaurant every Friday night. No, you don’t actually have to spend money on eating out. Take your dinner to the park! If you live in an apartment, go use the rooftop if the weather is nice. Just change up your scenery and make a point to still pursue your spouse.
This is one of my favorites. Kurtis and I LOVE to start our Sundays in our PJ’s with a hot cup of coffee (or two) while listening to a podcast relating to couples. No, it isn’t as boring as it sounds! Right now, we are going through the RISE Together podcast by Rachel and Dave Hollis. Rachel is the author of “Girl Wash Your Face” if that rings a bell! They are rarely more than 45 minutes long and they seriously cover so much. This podcast has allowed Kurtis and I to have conversations that we may not have had otherwise. It has brought up things we didn’t even think about yet (hello, one year of marriage) and allowed us to catch things before we actually needed to.
It starts with you.
Yes, this one is always hard to swallow and one I actually learned from our Podcast Sundays. You can’t control your spouse but you can control what you do. Get yourself in shape, pursue your interests, acknowledge what you need to work on within. Date and love yourself so that you can love your spouse better.
This one is so important. It is absolutely okay to be interested in different things. Actually, I feel like that has it’s own time and place. Keep your personal interests, of course, but find something you and your spouse love to do together and pursue it! Kurtis and I love to hike, in fact it is the main reason why we wanted to move to the PNW. It is something we can do together and has created a treasure trove of memories we still talk about to this day.
Know your spouses love language/style.
“Often we assume that love means to our partners what it means to us, but the truth is, two people rarely mean the same thing when they say ‘I love you.’” As silly as this may seem to some, if you are not showing love to your spouse in the language they speak, in their eyes, you are not loving them at all. Plain and simple. “Monica and John were assuming that how they loved was how their partner wanted to be loved, and both were feeling unloved because of it.” If you didn’t go through marriage counseling for whatever reason, try giving this book a shot. It is called Saving Your Marriage Before It Starts and to this day, SYMBIS has shaped how Kurtis and I approach our marriage. You can get it on Amazon! ;)
I hope these points at least give you a place to start! Everyone is different and may meet on a totally different level than Kurtis and I. But the point is, never stop pursuing each other. I know that I work in the wedding industry and I place quite a bit of importance on wedding days, but I want to be clear that there is so much more fairytale that awaits you after your big day.
It is just the beginning.