In football, the offense will try to get in a rhythm by running the ball well and by throwing passes into the mix. No offense succeeds by trying to throw a bomb on every play. The best teams move down the field in little chunks at a time. A five-yard run here, a seven-yard pass there, an occasional deep ball to keep the defense off-balance.
Developing a successful marriage works the same way. Take little actions every day to show your spouse you care for and love them deeply. These small, intentional acts are important because you’re in this for life! You can’t plan for a future together—including your retirement—if your spouse has turned into your roommate. When you are able to effectively communicate love and affection to one another, it not only deepens your relationship, but also makes communicating about big things—like money and retirement—that much easier (and fun!). Here are some ways to keep your relationship on track so you can plan and look forward to a successful future together.
How a Husband Can Show Love
- Declare your love. During the day, leave a message to say “I love you” or “I was just thinking about you and the time we . . . ” If you do this, your wife will feel loved because you intentionally took a few seconds to focus on her.
- Show affection in public. Lay your hand on her knee. Put your arm around her. Kiss her. This communicates that you are proud to be with her and that you’re glad she’s your wife.
- Tell her she’s beautiful on a regular basis. There’s an old joke about a man who struggled to tell his wife she was beautiful. When asked about it, he said, “I told her she was beautiful when I married her. If something changes, I’ll let her know!” Your wife needs to hear she’s beautiful— especially since our culture is constantly telling her she’s not.
- Take something off her plate. Ask yourself, “How can I help?” Then do it. Make the lunches in the morning. Take the kids for a walk so she can have 15 minutes of silence. These acts show that you know how hard she works.
- Pray for her in person. Before you leave the house every morning, hold her and pray for her. Praying specifically for her needs tells her you’re paying attention.
How a Wife Can Show Love
- Thank him for his efforts. “Thank you for taking the kids for ice cream.” “I appreciate you changing the oil in the car.” A guy needs to know he’s got skills! Thanking him is a way to affirm his abilities.
- Brag on him in public. Nothing will have your man puff his chest out with pride like hearing his bride tell a girlfriend about something he did well. You’re letting the rest of the world know why you appreciate him. And that’s a big deal to guys!
- Show interest in intimacy. This area can be a source of tension in a marriage, especially when women don’t understand that a husband needs his wife to desire him. It’s just the way God wired guys. Showing desire for your husband goes a long way toward him feeling loved.
- Congratulate him on a job well done. Can I let you in on a huge secret? A man needs your respect. “You did a great job explaining that math problem.” “I’m so proud of you for not losing your cool.” If you show respect, he’ll do everything he can to keep that respect.
- Make him a priority. How do you think a guy feels when he’s last on your list? If you choose to go shopping with a friend when your hubby asked to watch a movie together, he may feel like he’s in second place. And that’s not a good thing.
These small gestures are awesome because they’re so easy to do! When you put them into action and meet your spouse’s needs, you’re strengthening your marriage bit by bit. You’re building a stronger and deeper relationship, so you can focus on building an exciting future together. You both win!