5 Ways to Strengthen Your Marriage

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Hello, friends! It’s Friday! Do you have any fun plans for the weekend? All the snow we had finally melted away, and the past few days have been unusually warm. It was almost 60 degrees on Wednesday! Not that I’m complaining. I’m all for warm temps and sunshine! Is it summer yet? 🙂

Main pic MarriageToday’s post is kind of random and nothing DIY or craft related whatsoever. To be honest, I even feel a little bit silly posting something like this. But, in lieu of a new year starting and Valentine’s day coming up, I thought it’d be fun to share some little things David and I try to do (and maybe you already do all of them!) to help strengthen our marriage. I know many couples make new years resolutions together regarding their marriage and how to grow closer to each other, so I thought this might help. But, before I jump into anything, I just have to throw out a couple of disclaimers: 1. I am not a marriage expert. At all. In fact, I could definitely use a couple marriage classes and more tips myself (and hence why I feel silly posting this!)! 2. David and I do NOT have a perfect marriage. We are human, and have our good days and bad days, ups and downs, and struggles just like everyone else. I really don’t think there is anyone who has a completely perfect marriage (and if you do, I’d LOVE to meet you and find out your secrets! ;)).

However. I do know that David and I love each other more than any other person on this planet (besides Jade, of course!), and we will always do our best each day to serve, love, and be there for each other in any way we need. That being said, we try really hard to do the following 5 things often, but we don’t always do them. Sometimes life gets in the way,  we just had an off day, or we forget. It happens to us all!

Though I’m writing this from my perspective; men, these all go both ways! 🙂

1. Leave Them a Note

Marriage 1

Ever since we’ve been married (or at least I think so?), I’ve made David’s lunch. Not because he’s asked me to, but because I want to. We also really try to save money, so David loves bringing his own lunch to work so he doesn’t have to worry about taking time to go buy lunch somewhere. Since I’m the one making it, sometimes I sneak in a little note for him. It could be anything from just an, “I love you!” to “I hope you’re having a great day!” to a longer love note, letting him know how much I appreciate him working so hard. Whatever you write, it shows you took the time to think about and show your love for them. I know he appreciates them because he never throws them away. He keeps a little stack in the bottom of his lunch box of my notes so he can read them when he’s having a bad day. If your spouse doesn’t take a lunch, you can always leave them a note on the seat of their car, in their briefcase, or in their jacket pocket. Get creative! This isn’t something I do all the time. I might do it once every few weeks, or when the mood strikes. Sometimes if he had a really rough day, I’ll leave him a note for the following day, just to encourage and let him know I love him.

2. Say Goodbye/Greet Them 

Marriage 2This may sound silly or obvious, but we both make it a point to say goodbye in the morning before he leaves for work, and hello when he gets home. It’s so simple! After David says his goodbyes to Jade before he goes to work, we always say goodbye to each other with a hug and kiss. I think it starts the day off on the right foot! As soon as David gets home and Jade gets over her “daddy’s home!!” excitement, we also always say hello to each other with a hug and kiss. Something as simple as this can totally melt away my stress if it’s been a crazy or chaotic day! It takes literally 10 seconds, but it really conveys that we’re important enough to stop what we’re doing to acknowledge each other’s presence.

3. Say “Hi” During the Day

marriage 3When David and I first started dating, I remember getting in a few fights over this. And by getting in fights, I mean me being the one upset and giving the silent treatment and him having NO idea why. Silly, yes, but I just didn’t understand why it was SO hard for him to just send me a quick text and say “hi!” All I wanted was to just know he was thinking about me even a little bit during his day. He didn’t get it. But, finally after a few discussions, he understood. He said he thought about me all the time, but just didn’t THINK about telling me. Does any guy? 🙂 Now that we’re a few years into our marriage, this is just a normal daily check-in. Usually around lunchtime, one of us will text the other and ask how each other’s day is going. Sometimes during a random time of the day we’ll text each other with an, “I love you!” or “just wanted you to know I’m thinking about you!” I gotta say, even though it’s something routine, it still is so nice knowing he’s thinking of me during his busy day, and is taking the time to let me know. And vice versa. So, my point is, don’t underestimate a simple “hello” during the day. Whether it be a quick text message, phone call, or e-mail, it’s always nice to be told you’re being thought of!

4. Say Thank You

Marriage 5I don’t mean saying “thank you” after the normal things you’d thank someone for. I’m talking about random things. Genuinely showing your appreciation for one another, unexpectedly. In a marriage, we are constantly giving. Spouses give a lot to each other to make a marriage work, but sometimes, that giving feels futile because we don’t feel appreciated. Things we do for each other may become expected, rather than being an act of love. In our marriage, we really try to be thankful for the things we do for each other, and not take them for granted. Because I’m home with Jade all day, I generally do most of the cleaning, laundry, cooking, etc. Instead of feeling like I HAVE to do it all and have resentment toward David, I do it willingly with love, because I know he genuinely appreciates it. When I forget to wash a specific work shirt or pants, he never gets upset; instead, in the midst of me feeling terrible that I forgot, he thanks me for washing his clothes in the first place. He thanks me for staying home and raising our daughter during the day. I thank him for working so hard so I CAN stay home with Jade. We don’t have expectations. While we mayvhave different roles within our marriage, we still are a team. When I apologize because I didn’t get to the vacuuming one day, he thinks I’m ridiculous and gladly does it for me. We appreciate. We love giving and doing things for each other, because that’s what makes a marriage work!

5. Pray Together

Marriage 4While this is probably the most important way to strengthen a marriage, we definitely don’t do it as often as we should. I know when we do pray together though, I always feel closer to David. We vowed to keep God at the center of our marriage and family when we got married. Keeping Him at the center takes work in today’s world, and being diligent in prayer is important. Even if it’s a simple and quick prayer together at the start of the day or the end, take the time to ask God for guidance and protection in any and all family decisions (we definitely will be taking my own advice here a little more often…).  Prayer is so powerful!

As I said above; our marriage is nowhere near anything resembling perfect. These are little things that work for us, but by no means are they the recipe for EVERYONE’s marriage. Marriages always need work to grow, and a new year is a good time to try something new!

Do you have any tips that have strengthened your marriage? I’d love to hear them!

Wedding photos credit: We heart Photography

Engagement photos credit: Stott Shots Photography

I link up at these fun parties!

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45 thoughts on “5 Ways to Strengthen Your Marriage

    1. Thank you so much, Bre! I know they’re all easy and probably no-brainers, but sometimes those little things become routine, or forgotten! 🙂 Hope you have a fabulous weekend, friend!

  1. Amanda, great post! This month my husband and I will be together 19 years and later this year we’ll be married for 12 years. None of us are experts. I think that we shouldn’t be striving for perfection because we know that only our Lord is perfect. 😉 When our world now is moving at the speed of crazy it’s important to occasionally reflect on our marriages. This list of simple things is something most of us probably do everyday, but sometimes we are on “autopilot”. A simple check in puts us back on track. It helps us to gain an appreciation for one another and to keep and unconditional bond/love between us.

    1. Thank you, Roxana! Congrats on 19 years of being together! Sadly, it’s becoming more rare these days! You’re so right; we are totally imperfect. God is the perfect one! I agree it’s easy to get on autopilot, and to forget to appreciate each other. Thanks for your sweet comments. Hope you have a great weekend! 🙂

    1. Thanks, Natalie! It’s so true; I think we ALL get like that sometimes! We don’t think about being polite and appreciating them when it’s go-go all the time. I think we just sort of expect it, too! 🙂 Hope your weekend is off to a great start!

    1. Thank you so much, Emily! I think it’s also a great reminder to my hubby and I as well, to continue doing all these things! Hope you have a great weekend!

    1. Aw thanks Selene! Congrats on 11 years, that’s so exciting! Our anniversary is in May too, but we’ll be at 4 years. 🙂 I love the note idea too, it’s something so simple but so special! 🙂 Hope you’re feeling well, and get to relax as much as possible! 🙂

    1. Thanks Amanda! I hear ya, I think that happens so easily when we have kiddos! We get so busy with them that we forget about each other sometimes! Hope you’re having a great weekend. 🙂

  2. Those random little love notes are a big part of our marriage. 🙂 And my husband used to call me when he left work every day (he couldn’t call me from work, really, but he’d call me right after he clocked out, and I loved that). Now we share a phone and I jut guess what time he’s coming home since I know he can’t call, haha!
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    1. I love those notes, too! Though generally I’m the only one who writes them…but it’s ok, I love doing it! And my hubby used to do that, too!! He had about a 20 minute drive so he’d called me right as he left to say he was one his way and we’d chat for a bit. He recently got a different job only a few minutes away and doesn’t call anymore. I miss it! 🙂

  3. Amanda, thank you for sharing this post! Brian and I have a good marriage, but we could definitely do better (as you, doesn’t everyone?) and this was so encouraging and helpful! I love what you said about praying together. We used to kneel beside our bed every night, and really should get back into that habit, because it truly does bring us closer to eachother and God. Thanks again!
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    1. You’re so welcome, Rebekah, and thank you for taking the time to read it! It’s funny how we know praying together is SO powerful, but we rarely remember to do it. David and I really need to make it much more of a habit!! 🙂 Hope you’re having a great weekend!

  4. These are great! I love leaving notes for my hubby too 🙂 One thing I want to work on more this year is the prayer one – we do it before meals and at Bible study, but not too much else. So hopefully that’s something we can improve upon this year! And BTW all of your wedding/engagement pictures are GORGEOUS! So adorbs 🙂
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    1. Aw thanks, friend! I hear ya, we definitely struggle (and fail..) a lot in prayer, too. We just forget sometimes! But we’re trying to improve on that, too. Ha, I look at those pictures and think, “We look so young!!” … even though it was only 4 years ago. 😉 Thank you!! Happy Monday 🙂

    1. Thanks, Kim! I totally agree, those daily little things we do without thinking or forget to do altogether are sometimes the most important! 🙂 Thanks for visiting, hope you have a great week!

    1. Aww, thank you SO much, Cathy!! You totally just made my day. 🙂 So glad you popped over and found our party, we are so happy to have you! And thank you for following!!! 🙂

  5. I LOVE this post! Thanks so much for sharing it. I have a passion for marriage, and I love hearing about happily married couples. I’m no expert, either, but I have been married for 22 years. These little tips seem small, but they do a lot to keep a couple close. Praying for your marriage is probably the most important, as well as praying together. We also find encouragement and thankfulness towards one another to be of great importance. Beautiful pictures, by the way! Blessings to you and yours!
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    1. Thank you SO much, Heather! Your sweet words made my day! 🙂 Congrats on 22 years! Sadly, it’s seems like it gets more rare these days. My parents have been married for 35 years, and my grandparents celebrated 62 years this last August. It’s inspiring and a great model of marriage should be! Thank you for stopping by for a visit. I hope your weekend is lovely! 🙂

  6. Don’t feel silly writing this! I loved it. My boyfriend and I are still dating, but I always love reading posts like this, because I learn a lot. Your ideas are great. I especially like the one about saying “thank you.” I have been working on that lately.

    Thanks for sharing this with Hump Day Happenings!
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    1. Aw, thank you Jenna! These things are totally still good for dating couples, too! An appreciative “thank you” can totally go a long way! Hope your week gets off to a great start! 🙂

    1. Thank you, Carolyn! There are so many MORE things we are working on to do as a couple, but these are a few we really try! I appreciate you taking the time to come visit. 🙂 Have a great day!

    1. Thank you! I agree, it’s easy to get into our routines and habits. It’s important to make sure we continue to love each other and show it! 🙂 Thanks for stopping by!

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