My wife and I are celebrating our 7th year anniversary, hurray!!!
In some way, it’s not a very long time, ‘cos people get to more than 50 years in marriage. However, it’s a significant milestone for us because we also know that not many couples make it past their first year; and so, we’re grateful for the journey so far.
In this post, I’ll be sharing 10 things I’ve learned which I believe to be vital if you want to keep the fire burning in your marriage. I don’t claim to be an expert, and there are several other factors involved. But I just felt I should list only these 10.
With that in mind, let’s get rolling.
10 things to keep the fire burning in your marriage
1. Say I love you, every single day. And mean it: There is not one day that passes without my telling my wife how much I love her. It never gets stale, and it never gets too much. But the power is profound – especially when you demonstrate that you really do love your partner.
Remember when you guys were dating? I’m sure you said this at every given opportunity. Don’t change because you’re now married. Instead, remind her everyday that she’s the most beautiful and special of all ladies (or men) in the world.
2. Text her every day: I send at least 1 text message to my wife, every single day. I don’t need to have any information to pass, that’s completely different. Instead, I just ask her how her day is going, tell her I love her, that I miss her, and can’t wait to have her back home.
This is one of the key elements of communication & friendship in any given relationship or marriage. If you want to keep the fire burning in your marriage, you must be on top of your game with communication.
3. Romance and Intimacy: Since I work from my home office, I’m always at home when she gets back from work. I open the door for her and welcome her back with a hug and a kiss. I also massage her legs every day and hold hands while taking a walk. (Did I mention sex? Uhm, that one too!)
We do these things even when we’ve had a disagreement. On a couple of occasions, we’ve had a misunderstanding solved while I was massaging her legs.
We talk everything over and we never go to bed without resolving a disagreement. This is important because we sleep holding each other every night – so we don’t let “bad mood” get in the way of our intimacy.
4. Apologize. And mean it: Once in a while, we have a misunderstanding. Our secret to resolving them is talking things over as soon as possible, then apologize and move on. Always be willing to say I’m sorry. And show that you mean it.
Sometimes, pride wants to set in when everyone tries to prove that they are right. But I’ve learned that I can have a happy home by always going out of my way to make peace.
5. Don’t be too busy for each other: When you have a full-time job and 3-year old twins to take care of, life can get really busy. But don’t make the mistake of getting too busy that you don’t have time for your partner.
I always prioritize my wife in everything – she knows she’s my No. 1 and comes even before the kids. No matter what, we always make out enough time for each other. This is very important if you really want to keep the fire burning in your marriage.
6. Do little things together (and big ones too): We pray together, eat every meal together from the same plate, shower together, and watch TV together. We also plan our schedules and finances together.
This doesn’t mean we always do everything together, ‘cos we also need our “alone time”.
But for the most part you need to understand that you are a team. Doing things together will make your relationship stronger and help you keep the fire burning in your marriage.
7. Gifts and surprises: One Friday afternoon, rather than let my wife come back home from work, I planned a surprise weekend picnic / outdoor getaway; and waited for her outside her workplace.
After work, I just asked her to get into the car, and I drove us to a hotel (where I’d already settled our reservation and everything). She was so pleasantly surprised and we still talk about that weekend till today.
As icing on the cake, I got her a special necklace with her pet name printed. It wasn’t expensive at all (less than $200); but that gift and the surprise weekend getaway made everything have so much more value than the price I paid for it.
8. Pay attention to your partner’s feelings: It’s good to be objective – but emotions are very important in every relationship. You must pay attention to how your partner feels at each point in time. I’ll probably need 100 more years to completely understand a woman’s feelings but I’m making progress.
9. Respect one another: You must show maximum respect to your partner – inside and outside the home. Don’t become so familiar with each other that you forget the basics of courtesy and respect. Be polite and friendly; and protect each other everywhere you go.
10. Forgive one another quickly: I left this for last so that you will never forget it.
After reading everything I wrote above, it’s easy for you to think that I’m living in paradise and we never face any challenges in our marriage.
And you’ll probably start wondering why you have difficulties in your own relationship.
I’m here to tell you that we also do have our own challenges.
The secret though, is that we don’t let the sun go down on our anger – we never go to bed with an unresolved issue.
This happens when you apologize and ask for forgiveness. If you’re the person that has been hurt, be quick to forgive. We never let each other say sorry more than once.
And don’t keep bringing it up each time something else happens; and referring to the “last time you did such a thing”.
In your relationship there’ll be times when you’ll disagree and hurt each other.
But with forgiveness, there’s nothing you can’t do together.
There you have it, my list of 10 things to keep the fire burning in your marriage and relationship.
*** P.S. As part of our anniversary celebration, I’m planning another secret trip. We’ve both been dreaming of going there for vacation but haven’t got a chance until now. I just hope she doesn’t read this post before that day, lol.
Happy Anniversary Sweetheart.