Guidelines for Healthy Communication
- Focus on the other person and not on yourself.
- Restate what you heard your spouse say so that you avoid potential misunderstandings.
- Make direct eye contact when your spouse is talking with you.
- Leave arms uncrossed when talking about difficult subjects.
- Make sure your body is facing your spouse instead of away from them.
- Remind them that you love them.
- Ask your spouse if they need problem solving suggestions or feedback from you or whether they just want you to listen.
- Leave cell-phones and televisions turned off or in another room when having important discussions.
- Have regular planning or business meetings to keep track of important business decisions or calendar events.
- Have fun. Very few things in life are true crises.
Build a Hedge Around Your Marriage
- Tell your spouse you love them and/or appreciate them daily
- Learn and respect your differences
- Listen and affirm your spouse, then listen and affirm them some more
- Forgive your spouse if they miss a beat. You will need it reciprocated someday
- Discover your spouse’s Love Language and use it daily
- Regularly ask your spouse how you can help them
- Take a weekly date night with just the two of you
- Pray together daily
When one wins, you both win
Many times when couples have discussed an issue with their spouse, they expect their spouse to always remember the information. Things change, life happens, and spouses forget. Later, when the same situation occurs, it is often expected that one spouse will remember the previous information but they don’t; they miss a beat. It may be necessary to forgive them and to repeat the information again. If so, do so lovingly. It is hard enough to ask again! When they get it right, you get your needs met and your spouse feels good about meeting the need. When one wins, you both win.
Types of Companionship in Marriage
At Home Dates
- Spread a blanket on the floor and have a picnic. Throw on a log if you have a fireplace.
- Pop some popcorn and watch old movies or sitcoms
- Take turns doing karaoke
- Play a board game
- Put candles on the table and serve dinner on fine china
- Play Charades
- Make a funny couple or family CD or DVD
- Take turns finishing a puzzle together
- Make cookies together
- Read each other a story
- Try half price appetizers during restaurant Happy Hours
- Attend a community festival
- Go fishing (don’t forget your fishing license)
- Take a stroll in the park
- Play frisbee or basketball at
- Enjoy an outdoor community theatre
- Visit the library
- Share an ice cream cone
- Take a long drive and watch the
- Go bike riding
- Take an exercise class together
- Feed the ducks at the park