When you think about your marriage, does it feel like things are slipping away? We’ve found that making our marriage thrive means working hard to get past some major road blocks that get in the way, and keeping habits that make us stronger. Here are 10 reasons your marriage isn’t thriving.
10 Reasons Your Marriage Isn’t Thriving
1. You Don’t Listen to Each Other
It’s important to not only hear what your spouse is saying, but to really listen. Not sure of the difference? Next time he’s talking, try to recall what he shared. If you can recap the conversation, then you were actively listening. If not, you were hearing, but not focused on his words. We’re all guilty of only hearing sometimes, but with your spouse it’s important to set aside other thoughts that may be running interference and really listen. This will help you to communicate better with one another.
2. You’ve Stopped Courting One Another
When was the last time you gave her flowers or you made his favorite meal? Remember the days when you were working to impress the other…when your only goal was to show her what a great guy you were? As soon as you stop courting each other, you stop showing her that she’s worthy of your time and care. Make an effort to show her that she’s just as important to you as she always has been (if not more so).
3. Date Night Is a Thing of the Past
One big part of courting is going out…without the kids. Simply getting a sitter and going out for dinner (or really out anywhere) will help you to reconnect and rediscover the connection that you have. Not sure where to go for your next date? Take a look at some of our favorite cheap date night ideas and stay-at-home date night ideas!
4. The Kids Are Your Priority
Of course your kids are one of the most important things to you, but in a healthy marriage the pecking order must be: #1 God, #2 Spouse, #3 Kids. Seeing your spouse as a higher priority doesn’t mean that you love your children any less. It simply means that you’re honoring the relationship that you vowed before God that you would have with your husband/wife.
5. You Have Separate Goals
Some of the goals that we set for ourselves, such as fitness and professional goals, are individual. Others are important to set as a couple. Having a common vision of where you want to go as a couple and a family gives you something to work on together. Talk about where you want to live, the lifestyle that you want to share, and how you’ll get there.
6. Your Relationship Isn’t Exciting Anymore
There has to be an element of surprise and fun left in your relationship. Maybe it’s the comfort of things you do, just the two of you, like watching a favorite show in the evening. Maybe it’s notes that you leave each other around the house. Keeping your marriage fun will help it to thrive. Take a look at some of the ways that we like to keep the romance alive (even when we’re exhausted).
7. You’ve Lost Sight of Your Vows
If you’re having a tough time getting past a challenge that you’re having, or find yourself nit-picking over habits that you find less than desirable, think about the vows that you made before God and your family. You vowed to love one another through thick and thin…even when he leaves his laundry on the floor. Respecting your marriage will help you to become a stronger couple.
8. You Place More Value on Other Relationships
When you get frustrated with something that your spouse does, do you talk to him/her, or do you pick up the phone to call your closest friend to vent? While we all need someone to talk to, going to the person who is supposed to be closest and working through tough times together will make your relationship stronger and will help it to thrive.
9. Running Your Home Isn’t a Combined Effort
Let’s face it; you both work (as we do). In our family, she homeschools our children and manages our home, while he works outside of the house, but we both work…a lot. We have found that working on our home together and making sure that everything is taken care of (laundry, cooking, cleaning, kids…) helps lead us both to a better understanding of the other. When we both put ourselves into what goes on in our home, there is less resentment for what isn’t done and we feel that we’re working on the same team.
10. You’ve Stopped Growing Together
Throughout our entire lives we grow and change. Unless you make a concerted effort to grow together, it’s possible that you may grow apart. Take up a new hobby together or learn a new skill as a couple. Grow together in your spiritual life. While it’s healthy to have time for you to grow on your own, you must make sure that you’re doing the same together.
Do you know of other reasons that your marriage isn’t thriving? Please share your thoughts.