Not from me! Lord, no! But I did see this in Parade Magazine this weekend and thought it was simple and common sense, and something many of us forget to do.
1. COMMUNICATE YOUR GOALS
It’s easy to complain when you’re unhappy; it takes work to sort out what you really need in your marriage. So write it down. And not just, “Be happy.” Spell out your short- and long-term goals-. Then share them with your spouse. Be prepared to listen to what he or she wants for the two of you, too.
Loving someone is a gift. Liking someone is more pragmatic. Tell your spouse something that you like about him or her every day. Be specific: “I like how kind you are to the neighbor’s dog” is far better than “I like that you’re nice.”
Keep a picture of the two of you at your happiest and look at it whenever you’re annoyed with one another. Going through an old photo album together also can help to remind you why you’re a couple.
Every couple disagrees sometimes. But pitched battles don’t solve anything. Come to the negotiating table. Compromise. But don’t try to solve problems when you’re angry with each other. Cool down and remember why you married this person. Choosing the same day each week to sit down and talk can take the tension out of disagreements and cut down on day-to-day sniping. And be thoughtful. Before you speak, ask yourself, “If I were to hear what I’m about to say, how would I respond?”
Real dates. A slice of pizza and a movie is not an evening on the town. Also, no discussing kids or mortgages. Take turns being the planner. When in doubt about what to do, try to imagine what your partner would enjoy. A date should make the other person feel like you’re making an effort.
(p.s. “I like how you are kind to the neighbor’s dog”? This must’ve been a bad day if that’s all you can think of!) : )