What goals married couples should be setting?
This is a question we are often asked when coaching and counseling married couples.
While this question has no absolute answer because every marriage has completely unique circumstances, there are still some key areas you should be setting goals in your marriage.
Are you and your spouse currently setting goals for your marriage? If not, we encourage you to check out these 5 reasons you should be setting goals in your marriage. By starting there you will have a better grasp on why setting goals as a couple is so important.
10 Goals Married Couples Should be Setting
Goals are a great way to get the conversation flowing in a marriage and one of the best team building exercises you can share. Setting goals requires you to dream together, be real with each other, but also gives you something to look forward to.
In our experience, there are certain goals married couples should be setting to make certain that their future together remains fulfilling and exciting! Today we are sharing some goals that all married couples should be setting.
1. Agree that communication always comes first.
Yes, couples are going to disagree and argue in marriages.…it’s just the way it is. But one goal married couples should set is agreeing to always talk to one another and figure out a resolution to disagreements.
Simmering and steaming over a marital argument isn’t healthy for anyone, and it only makes things worse. By agreeing to respectfully communicate no matter how you feel, you will minimize the opportunity for the enemy to come in and cause division.
Set a goal to make communication a lifelong priority in your marriage. Don’t allow the communication to break down and your marriage will continue to thrive year after year.
2. Promise to always be there for one another.
Being married is amazing but having a spouse that you know will stand by your side no matter what is truly a gift. Through thick or thin, in sickness and in health, you and your spouse made a lifelong promise that you both need to honor.
The problem with many couples today is that they are not willing to work through anything. They think it should just always be easy and feel good. Marriage, like any relationship, requires loyalty and commitment to each other and God.
When you are tempted to not be there for your spouse, think long and hard about the promise you made. We all go through things and we need someone there to support us. You should be that for one another no matter what comes your way (with the exception of physical and mental abuse).
Set a daily goal to be there for your spouse. This could be making sure you are available to talk to or it could be picking up dinner after work. There are so many ways we can be available for our spouse. Make the time to put systems in place so this can become a daily habit.
3. Set your sights on retiring and relaxing together.
Depending on the age you get married, you both may have many working years ahead of you. If possible, plan for the future and set appropriate financial goals so you both can retire together and enjoy the slower pace of life.
We love talking about what it will be like to grow old together. Sometimes the vision of us sitting together when we are old and gray gives us the strength to get through tough times. It’s dreaming and envisioning things about your future together that can help you rest in the moment and look forward to the future.
Creating goals early on in your marriage that will drive you to have a financially secure future is not only smart, but practical as well. These goals are a wonderful way to ensure you and your spouse are on the same team together as you walk through life.
4. Always attempt to keep your marriage “flame” lit.
Keeping intimacy fresh should be a high priority in your marriage. After all, physical intimacy is one of the ways that God designed you and your spouse to become one.
Being physically intimate in marriage can be difficult; especially when you factor in kids, outside obligations, and long working hours. Make a promise and set a goal that you’ll both find time to be intimate with one another. Don’t let that flame burn out!
If you find it hard to be intimate because of exhaustion, you can schedule time on the calendar for intimacy. No matter how you approach it, be sure to keep it high on your list of priorities. When physical intimacy dies in a marriage, you are in danger of the enemy coming in to divide.
If you are struggling with a low libido, work together to make sure that your needs are being met so you can enjoy your marriage bed together. Here are some ways to bring back intimacy in your marriage; it’s never too late!
No matter what…don’t give up!
5. Plan a date night once per month.
Having a date night at least once per month is important in a marriage. You both need time together away from the everyday stresses and distractions of life. When date night comes, go all out and fully immerse yourself in the company of one another!
Finances tight? Have little ones at home? No problem! At-home date nights are just as amazing as nights on the town. There are so many different things you can do to make at-home dates special. You can also set up date night fund to make sure that your dates always happen!
Able to hire a sitter and head out? Make sure you do something fun and get out of the dating rut that many couples find themselves in. Be creative and try new things. Here are 25 outdoor date ideas that we think every couple should experience.
6. Grow in your faith together to find purpose in your marriage.
As Christian couples, it is imperative that we set goals in our marriage that will drive us closer to Christ which will inevitably draw us closer to one another. You can set goals to read the Bible together once a month, read a marriage devotional, pray together, etc.
Setting goals to grow your faith will help you and your spouse find continued purpose together in your marriage. This is such a huge blessing to keep you both motivated to work hard to keep your marriage strong. It gives you both the vision you need when times get tough.
We realize that not all couples see eye-to-eye when it comes to their relationship with God. And that’s okay. While it’s possible for married couples to have different beliefs, you both still need to talk about it to fully understand how each other thinks and feels.
Don’t let your faith be the elephant in the room…it may not be a fun topic to always discuss, but the sooner that you have the conversation, the more at peace you will both feel about it. Faith is a huge part of your life, so don’t neglect to set goals together in this area so you can be a united front.
7. Agree to talk and parent your children together as a team.
There’s nothing worse for our children when husband and wife can’t agree on how to parent their children! This causes so much confusion in the hearts and minds of the children which often leads to anger. Setting goals to talk about what you want your children to learn from your marriage is a great place to start.
Early on in your relationship, take the time to discuss the importance of both of you being on the same page when it comes to raising your children. Use our free worksheet to help you cover the areas that are most important.
Once you come to an agreement on how to raise your children together, it’s time to set the goals to make it happen. This is a game-changer for any married couples raising children together. Not only will it teach your children that you love them, it will show them how to function in a healthy marriage.
8. Dream big about your future together.
While living in the present is great, you need to dream big about your future as well. Setting goals on how you want to grow together 5 years, 10 years and even 20 years down the road is something that you need to dream and plan! Having a lifelong marriage is the goal, so this type of planning is imperative to succeed.
If you are not a big visionary or dreamer, that’s okay. Over time as you talk about what you want your life to look like in the future, you’ll get the hang of it. And it’s likely that one of you is a dreamer anyhow which is a great thing.
In our marriage we are both dreamers and while that is awesome, it certainly has it challenges. We have to work together to make sure we don’t spend too much time dreaming and that we are putting our plans into action. Over the years we’ve found a great balance and it works wonderfully well as we set our marriage goals together.
9. Allow each other to love unconditionally.
Did you know that many times in a marriage, you are your own obstacle to try to get around? From the beginning, set goals to not let anything stop or question the love that you have for one another. Not worrying about your marriage and love that you share with your spouse is a wonderful and comforting feeling.
And stop trying to make your spouse “earn” your love. When you really love someone you will do so unconditionally. If you struggle with making your spouse “earn” your love, you really need to work on setting goals to help build trust. Just know that by working together to get past this, you can succeed!
Please note: We do not condone any type of abuse in marriage. If you are being abused physically or mentally, we encourage you to report it and walk away. This is NOT unconditional love.
If you are looking for some great ways to “show” each other you love one another through your actions, check out this post. That article can also help you figure out some areas where you can set goals to make sure you are loving one another unconditionally, too.
10. Agree to never fight dirty.
Sounds horrible to read, right? No one wants to fight, but we all have disagreements in our marriage from time to time. However, if you both set the goal to always “fight” fair, it’s a great way to work through your problems and disagreements with poise, elegance, and composure.
One area that we strongly suggest setting goals in this area is to always guard the words you say. We’ve talked about some things you should never say to your spouse as words truly can destroy a marriage.
On the flip side, if you learn to speak kind, life-giving words, your words can totally build up your marriage. And that is a wonderful thing!
One way to ensure that you always “fight” fair is to discuss and set clear boundaries for every area of your marriage. This will give you the ability to work together towards the goal of ensuring you always “fight” fair, not to hurt one another, but to truly resolve any issues that may arise.
Setting goals as a married couple doesn’t have to be overly strenuous.
All you and your spouse need to do is figure out a way that you can both come together to tackle your problems and concerns head on to be able to reach your goals. The more that you communicate and work together, the easier those goals will be to reach!
Goal Setting For Couples Course
If you and your spouse could use some guidance on how to set goals, create the plan to get there, and execute on that plan…we invite you to come learn with us!
Our Goal Setting for Couples Course will help you and your spouse discover, create, and work towards the marriage of your dreams…TOGETHER!