Many couples experience a turn in their relationship from the excitement and joy of being together to feelings of frustration, questioning, “Is this the best that I can expect from being married?” You may even feel, “I’m not really in love anymore.”
Sometimes the problem may be that you’ve become so accustomed to each other that you feel taken for granted. You can turn things around by developing a rhythm of appreciation in your marriage.
Notice Gestures Worthy Of Your Appreciation
Like most people you may go through your day without paying much attention to typical everyday experiences. Your life may be so predictable that it is as if you have learned to function on automatic pilot. While this may be efficient in some ways, the downside is that you may overlook small but significant things that you should appreciate about your spouse.
Periodically pause and take a moment to look for things that you appreciate about your mate. Usually the negative issues seem to be glaring, and in comparison the positive things get overlooked.
Intentionally Express Your Appreciation
Now that you are looking for things you appreciate, when you notice something, let your mate know how you feel. It may feel odd to you to say, “Thank you”, for something you think is your mate’s responsibility. However doing so will mean a lot to your spouse. It will also encourage your spouse to continue performing the behavior.
Show Appreciation With Action
Many couples find that they are different in how they prefer to be shown attention, affection and appreciation. This is their preferred love language. Figure out what pleases your mate. Would your spouse prefer for you to verbally expressing your appreciation? Perhaps a hug or other sign of physical affection would be better received. Maybe your spouse particularly enjoys your spending quality time together. Or perhaps a thoughtful gift or gesture would be welcomed. The important thing is, take the time to discover your spouse’s preferences and be intentional in showing that you care.
Make It A Habit To Show Appreciation
Many times you may be excited about trying a new idea, only to find that after a short while, you enthusiasm fizzles and so does your idea. To stay on track with your plan to show appreciation to your spouse, make it a habit.
Habits are easier to establish when the behavior occurs at a set time. At a specific time each day, pause to think about what you appreciate about your mate. Choose a time that suits your schedule such as:
- First thing in the morning during your quiet time
- While enjoying your breakfast
- During a routine break in your workday
- While you are eating lunch
- Before you enter your home after you return from work
Bearing in mind your mate’s preferred love language, show your appreciation.
Developing a rhythm of appreciation will bring positive changes to your relationship. Pay attention and tune into your spouse’s positive attributes. Be consistent in showing your spouse that you care.