Investing in Your Marriage

by Merritt on June 22, 2012

Married or single, it’s easy to fall into bad habits. What’s difficult is pulling out of them. At least for me, it’s truly about making a different decision. Recently, I wasn’t exercising as much as I wanted to until finally I just made a decision to get outside and walk every morning. Not every other morning. Not just when I feel like it or when the weather is in my favor, but EVERY morning. So far, so good. I’m already up to 11 out of the last 12 mornings.

iStock 000017325786XSmall 300x199 Investing in Your MarriageAlong those lines, I’m realizing it’s easy for us to fall into bad habits in our marriage. We go along our merry way. Date nights once a week. Movie night on the weekends. Hanging out with friends. Going to church. Working hard all week long. All of a sudden I look up and weeks have gone by, and I’m not sure how long it’s been since I asked the Husband what’s been on his mind, what his hopes are, what he’s struggling with, what I can pray for or where he wants us to be in five years.

I know other couples have established habits to stay more connected during the week. For some this might mean engaging in activities your spouse enjoys. For others it might mean being intentional to eat meals together at home or to go on walks. For us {well, I’ll speak for myself}, for me, it’s about talking. That might not be what my husband needs to feel connected to me, but it’s definitely what I need to feel connected to him.

We talked about this last night and agreed we need to be better at having intentional weekly conversations to help us connect emotionally and spiritually. Our friends at Today’s Letters have “Weekly Questions” they always ask one another:

1. How did you feel loved this past week?
2. What does your upcoming week look like?
3. How would you feel most loved & encouraged in the days ahead?
4. How would you best feel pursued in sex / intimacy this week?
5. How can I pray for you this week? 

Another blog I found recently shared questions for newlyweds:

1. How have the first X months of marriage compared with what you dreamed about or envisioned?
2. What are some of the things we need to acknowledge our thankfulness for in our first months of marriage?
3. What do you want to get better at as a wife or husband?
4. What do we want to get better at as a couple?
5. What are some of the dreams that you have as an individual? How can I help you reach them?
6. What are some of our dreams as a couple? How can we seek after them and surround ourselves with the right people?
7. What are some of our greatest blind spots as a couple?
8. In what ways do you feel like you’ve grown since we’ve gotten married? 

We’re planning to come up with our own combination of weekly questions to kick-start a habit of engaging regularly on topics that matter to us and our marriage. What about you? I’d love to hear your ideas–including what’s worked for you and what hasn’t.

What are you doing to invest in your marriage? 

Photo credit: © iStock Photos

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Melissa Shipman June 22, 2012 at 10:38 am

I love this idea! We haven’t started weekly questions yet, but it’s something we discussed and would like to tailor to fit our relationship style. I think one of the best question is just, “What can I do to bless you this week?” It’s so simple but yet can mean so much.

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Merritt June 22, 2012 at 11:25 am

Amen Sista! That is a good one! It’s a reminder to your spouse (and yourself) that you WANT to be a blessing. Love that.

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Jody Watkins June 22, 2012 at 6:59 pm

Merritt, I really appreciate this blog and I love the idea of having questions ready to use in order to keep things healthy and lively.

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Merritt June 23, 2012 at 1:47 pm

Hi Jody – Thank you. We haven’t decided on our questions yet (or even how many…or if they’ll change), but I think this practice will really help us stay connected and aware of how we are doing and encourage the health of our marriage.

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Christine October 29, 2013 at 7:18 am

I’m not married yet but this is something I should be thinking about beforehand huh? :-) This is a good thing to keep in mind! Would love to go over this with my future husband!

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Merritt | LiveSimplyLove October 29, 2013 at 5:11 pm

Hi Christine – Thanks for stopping by! It’s always a good idea to be thinking of good questions to ask the people you care about–whether or not you’re married. A friend of mine just wrote a post about mindfulness and building deep relationships, which you might enjoy as well: http://kitchenfellowship.com/6-simple-ways-to-break-the-cycle-of-mindlessness-start-engaging-with-the-world-around-us/

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