Your wedding day is as romantic as it gets. Big declarations about how you will love only each other for the rest of your days.
How you will strive to be your best selves and to bring out the best in the other person. You look the best you likely ever have in your life, and every detail of the day is planned to perfection. You can’t top your wedding day, and you shouldn’t try to, but you should try to keep that same spirit of romance alive. The health and longevity of your marriage depends on it. You don’t have to break out the flowers and dancing every day (though it wouldn’t hurt), but here are a few things you can do to keep that romance alive:
Make Real Time for Each Other
The best thing you can do to maintain your connection and your romance is to make time for each other. Life will quickly get busy after your wedding day. Long hours at your job and – later, perhaps – time spent caring for your children. It can be easy to skip out on alone time together, but you must make time for it.You don’t have to go on a “date,” per se. If you just like taking long walks around your neighborhood every day, that’s awesome! You can even just lounge on the couch together and watch Netflix. Whatever you’re doing, just make sure that you’re focused on each other and that nothing else is demanding your time.
Keep Trying New Things Together
Part of what made your early dating life together so exciting is that everything was new. You were new to each other, and you probably did a lot of new things together, like trying out new restaurants or participating in hobbies that the other liked. You can maintain some of that excitement by doing new things together throughout your marriage. Stop eating at the same chain restaurants and try new places local to you. Take a class together. Sign up for a race. Go to a ballet. Just do something that you don’t usually do or that you have never done before.
Keep Being Nice to Each Other
After years of being married, we get comfortable! Complacent. We take each other for granted and just stop being courteous. This, is exactly what leads to trouble – not giving each other the simple “thank yous” and kind gestures that we all deserve. I’m talking about trying to constantly try to outdo each other! It’s so easy to take your spouse for granted. You know them so well, and they’ve already guaranteed that they’ll be there. But over time, you can sap the joy right out of your marriage if you aren’t taking care with each other. Practice being just as nice to your spouse as you are to any stranger on the street.
Ask for things kindly. Use a conciliatory tone of voice to explain yourself. Take the same care to avoid hurt feelings and misunderstandings that you would with a co-worker or with anyone else who you talk to every day.
Go to Counseling Regularly
Even if everything is perfect! There is no ‘How to be Married’ handbook. It’s a “learn as you go”, sink or swim deal. As with everything in life, you NEED to be schooled in areas that you are not familiar with. A professional marriage counselor will be able to walk you through the different stages in a marriage and prepare you for what’s to come. Armed with ‘how to overcome marriage obstacles’ is priceless.
Plan Vacations Only For Two!
This is CRUCIAL. Many couples, especially ones that find themselves living long distances from families. They then spend the majority, if not ALL holiday and free time traveling to visit parents back home. Not taking vacations together is a huge mistake! You both NEED time to unwind. Time to disconnect from the daily grind. When you don’t get it, married life becomes monotonous, and you will begin to look for “fun” elsewhere!
Surprisingly, this will likely be the hardest thing for you both to do. The first couple of years are a breeze and you think they will be that way forever, but the sad fact is, you will both work late nights or one of you will go to bed earlier than the other and before you know it, you are eating at different times and rarely break bread together at all! Make dinner a priority – plan date nights too, but keep dinnertime sacred.
There is something about nature that brings couples closer together. You don’t need to be an avid outdoorsman to enjoy a long trail walk or boating on the lake. Simply stepping away from the norm and listening to the birds and feeling the wind blow in your hair as you hold hands or having a picnic outside is not only easy to plan, but brings a calm to your marriage like nothing else.
Surprise Each Other
Last, but not least, keep igniting a few sparks along the way! Whether it’s a little love note or the perfume he likes or an impromptu visit at work. Surprising each other every now and then with something unexpected brings an unpredictability that keeps marriage exciting. Of course, if you live with someone who is more of a planner, you may want to hold off on those last minute trips to exotic lands without any notice!
You may not have fireworks every day of your marriage, but there’s no reason that the romance has to slowly die. Keep putting in the effort, and you will keep that spark alive that made you fall in love in the first place. If you haven’t read our 10 Secrets to A Great Marriage… check it out.