Rule#2: STAY CONNECTED with your Spouse / LET THEM IN.
When committing with spouse, nobody plans for a cold marriage. No passionate marriage goes down with a bang either. It happens slowly over a period of time at the expense of our own neglect and wrong choices that we somehow make everyday. Life is fast paced, demanding and not forgiving. We need to have our plan of action ready and at work to keep our marriage shielded and strong. Just like keeping your priorities straight, staying connected with your spouse is another sure way to keep your marriage on the right track.
1. Have a shared vision:
Your idea of a successful life, fulfilling relationship and image of an ideal spouse might be a complete turn off for your spouse. Your thoughts on having and raising kids might go against your spouse’s wishes. Similarly, their ideas about chores responsibilities might not sound very fair to you. Put it all out on the table, and talk your way through things. It avoids unnecessary expectations and cuts down on a lot of unnecessary drama. Being on the same page helps you overcome the tough blocks, and helps you go through difficult times together.
When planning the wedding make sure to plan the marriage too. Let them in on your vision of life, perspective on marriage, parenting wishes, and things that are important to you.
2. Communicate well.
The words you don’t use, the ones you do use and the way you use them can make or break your marriage; not to mention the spirit of your spouse.
You wont be able to agree completely with each other (since no two people can be alike!). The rule to maintain peace is to tackle the essentials and ignore the rest. Use the differences to strengthen the relationship. Everyone has a right to live their lives according to their terms (with amendments). A spouse meeting per week or every two weeks helps catch up on things, and keeps goals and deadlines in sight. Here are few rules to always stick to.
- Always keep things clear and simple.
- Mind your words. Don’t play a non stop chattering box and annoy the patience out of your spouse, or put the conversations on permanent hold.
- Pay attention to how you word your requests and communicate your feelings. Use please and thank yous. It goes a long way.
- If you are not sure about something, ASK and not GUESS. (especially for wives who are quick at assuming)
- Take time to appreciate your spouse.
- Take care of the timings. Do not ring up your spouse at work or while they are busy for something that can wait. Do not dump your problems on them as soon as they enter the door.
- Avoid speaking in the moments of heat and anger.
- Be honest and never lie. It corrodes the relationship.Loss of trust is the loss of relationship. Click To Tweet
- If you are mistaken, acknowledge it.
- Lighten things up by joking around.
- If you know saying something would cheer your spouse up, it is always a good idea to go ahead with it.
- Say something uplifting to your spouse everyday.
- Do not build castles of expectations and keep your spouse in the dark about it.
- Absolutely do not assume stuff, don’t make things up in your head and breathe life into them. Those things always tug at the relationship.
- Do not play the blame games. No one wins.
- Do not pass hidden messages; excuse the guess work. There is no point in beating about the bush.
- Avoid arguing.
- Steer clear of criticism. It is unacceptable unless it’s constructive.
- Avoid making fun of each other especially in front of others. It might make huge dents on the spouse’s self esteem.
- Don’t demand to know every single detail of their lives. Don’t leech on them. Healthy distances keep the relationships alive.
- Do not bottle up things trying to play nice until it bursts out of proportions.
3. Mind the little things.
When your spouse is sharing something important, are you paying almost no attention because you’re watching T.V? Do you continue to pepper their eggs out of forgetfulness when you know they don’t like it? After their long day at work, are you too caught up with something else to even notice their entry? Do you forget to take out trash EVERYDAY?
While these things can be seemingly harmless with no bad intentions behind, they can eat at the relationship slowly while conveying a loud message of you being thoughtless.
In marriage Little things are Big things.
Every day presents you with many situations which you can use in your favor with your thoughtfulness and strengthen your relationship. By ignoring them you will turn them into relationship-wrecking-monsters.
It doesn’t mean you have to go out of your way and buy a Ferrari for your spouse, throw a mind-blowing-surprise-party or leave an extremely creative romantic note around (though your spouse would definitely not say no to any of it). All you have to do is just pay extra attention and have your claims of love backed up by action. It will keep the bitterness away, the love alive and your marriage strong.
Do not take little things for granted. Save your spouse the last slice of their favorite cake, turn the screens off when they come to chat with you, help them around the house, keep in mind their preferences, consult them when buying big items and making important decisions, make appointments after checking with them and offer a back rub when they have had a long day. A little thoughtfulness goes a very long way.
4. Have a daily Spouse slot.
Staying connected in today’s world with your spouse is quite a challenge. It takes no time to tie the knot and go from being loving spouses to roommates. Life is fast and it takes over if you are not careful.
At the same time staying connected is healthy for your relationship and keeps a lot of surprises and missed appointments away. Make communication a must. Make it a priority especially if there are kids in the picture or it doesn’t take long for romance to go out the window.
It is not possible to share physical space and and stay distant emotionally without creating conflicts in your head and marriage. When you fail to make time for your spouse, you will spend even more time battling misunderstandings, arguing about non consequential things, taunting, nurturing grudges, feeling stressed out, distant and possibly victimized. Lack of healthy communication sabotages the relationship in the long run.
Keep at least one uninterrupted hour for your spouse every day; be it an hour at lunch time, over evening coffee, after kids are tucked into bed or an hour before you start the day. Turn off your electronics. Talk about your lives, your struggles and decisions. Remind your spouses how incredible they are, and how you are grateful for their presence in your life. Make sure to continue making each other feel special. Reconnect on daily basis, laugh together, share your concerns, and get recharged.
What is your favorite way of reconnecting with your spouse on a regular basis? Do share your valuable feedback and stay tuned for the last rule.