Refresh the relationship with your spouse

Refresh the relationship with your spouse

Do you sometimes wish that you can turn back the clock to a time when your marriage and life were simpler and you enjoyed even the smallest of pleasures together?

Too often couples feel that the pressures of marriage and family have complicated what once was a very joyous and easy partnership. Perhaps, you may want to reflect on your relationship with your spouse.

When relationships go wrong, it can be tempting to blame the other person and to focus on all the ways that he or she needs to change. The truth is we cannot make another person change, but we can alter our own reactions and behaviour. It helps to think positively about your marriage and look forward to having a real friendship with your spouse rather than blaming him or her for every unhappiness.

People who are happily married are always looking for new and exciting ways to connect with their spouses and share things every single day. If this does not sound like the relationship that you are in, then here are some tips for keeping that flame burning:

    • Make a decision together that you both want a fresh start in your relationship. You will both have to commit to working on your marriage.
    • Decide together that the past is behind you. Old transgressions should never be used in current conversations and arguments.
    • Agree to a new set of standards. For example: you will go on dates with each other regularly; you will not bring up issues that are more than three days old; you will both commit to being available to talk whenever the other one needs to talk; you will not belittle or make jokes of each other.
    • Have regular communication. Keep a regular check-up of how you are doing with your set of standards and make sure you are accountable to each other for holding up your end of the bargain.
    • Spend quality time together doing the things you used to love doing together, and make that time a priority.
    • Be prepared to say, “I’m sorry” – and mean it! It can be hard to admit when we’re wrong or when we’ve messed up, but when we do it opens the door to healing in relationships.
    • Have fun together. Laughing together is a great way to bring some joy back into your relationship.
    • Show your appreciation. Nobody likes to be taken for granted and most people can’t mind-read, so if you are thankful for the things your spouse has done for you, tell him or her.
    • Go away. Getting away together can be symbolic and that is a perfect way to start all over again.
    • If all else fails, seek help with a marriage counsellor.




(Revised by M van Deventer)