Learning how to improve your marriage can be as simple as ignoring the Golden Rule. These tips are from relationship coach Karen Card, author of How to Get More Love – 40 Tips to Make Love Work.
Before her tips, a quip:
“Infatuation is when you think he’s as sexy as Robert Redford, as smart as Henry Kissinger, as noble as Ralph Nader, as funny as Woody Allen, and as athletic as Jimmy Conners. Love is when you realize that he’s as sexy as Woody Allen, as smart as Jimmy Connors, as funny as Ralph Nader, as athletic as Henry Kissinger and nothing like Robert Redford – but you’ll take him anyway.” ~ Judith Viorst.
Ah, ain’t love grand?! I especially like the part about “taking him anyway” — because that’s what happy marriages are all about: acceptance and unconditional love.
If you want to improve your married life, read The Secrets of Happily Married Women: How to Get More Out of Your Relationship by Doing Less.
And, here are seven ways to improve your marriage…
How to Improve Your Marriage – A Relationship Coach’s Tips
Guest article by Karen Card, author of How to Get More Love – 40 Tips to Make Love Work.
Wives, be assertive at work — not in your marriage
Being assertive and determined works well for businesswomen, but not dating or marriages. Many women don’t understand that a man needs to feel he is successful at pursing her and making her happy, so he can fall in love with her. A man needs to feel his desire to make her happy and see her as a valuable woman who he will stay interested in for a long time.
Husbands, keep pursuing your wives!
To be a good husband, the man should pursue the woman and not the other way around. When a husband pursues his wife, he focuses on her needs and making her happy – and this makes him happy. So, both spouses are happy. However, when a woman pursues a man, it causes the man to stop pursuing her. When he stops pursuing her, he stops focusing on what makes her happy and instead he focuses on what makes him happy. While this initially feels good, he quickly loses interest in the woman….and this doesn’t increase love for married couples.
Recognize the three month honeymoon phase
When we start dating, we mistakenly believe the good feelings will last forever. However, all good marriage advice includes the bad news is that chemistry and excessive love hormones usually only last about three months. Husbands, realize that she’s human and probably won’t laugh at all your jokes as your relationship progresses. Wives, realize he may seem perfect at the beginning, but don’t start making wedding plans until you have dated for at least three months. Read Romance Tips — Easy Ways to Show Your Love for more ways to improve your marriage.
If you’re dating, don’t try to be the perfect wife or husband
During a new relationship, a woman may become so attracted to a man that she already thinks of him as her future husband. If she believes he is Mr. Right, she’ll want him to think she is Ms. Right. So, she starts acting like she is the “perfect wife” for him. She unselfishly tries to meet all his needs, and cooks and cleans for him, plans all their dates around his favorite activities, ignores her friends to accommodate his schedule, and even does his laundry. The message she is trying to send is, “See how great your life will be when we are married?” Unfortunately, the message he hears is, “She really enjoys taking care of me, so I don’t have to do any work. And since she seems so happy doing this now as my girlfriend, I won’t ever have to marry her.”
Don’t follow the Golden Rule
A great tip for improving your marriage is not to “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” This rule doesn’t work in love relationships or marriages because men and women have different needs. When a wife “does unto” a man, she gives him what she wants to receive (what she really wants him to give to her). When he does not appreciate this, she is upset and neither partner feels good. A practical example of this is when a woman is upset, she may want to talk about it. When a man is upset, he may want to be left alone. If she follows the Golden Rule when he is upset, she will try to get him to talk about it…which is the opposite of what he needs. When she is upset, he may leave her alone, which is what he would want but is the opposite of what she needs.
Whether you’re married or dating, follow the Silver Rule
“Do unto others as they want to be done unto.” Give your partner or spouse what he or she really needs, not what you might need in the same situation.
Wives, don’t mother your husbands
Every marriage or long-term relationship has a balance that defines each partner’s role in the relationship. Some relationships have a “give and take” balance while others work on a “masculine/feminine” balance. However, the mother/son balance is not healthy for love relationships! In a mother/son balance, the woman ends up “taking care of” or “mothering” her husband. The more she does, the less he does because she’s taking care of everything. This makes a marriage unhappy.
For more relationship tips, read How Do I Save My Marriage From Divorce? 6 Ways to Reconnect.
If you have any thought or questions on these tips for improving your marriage, please comment below…
Relationship coach Karen Card has helped clients all over the world get engaged, get married, stop divorces, and find happiness through love. She’s the author of How to Get More Love – 40 Tips to Make Love Work. To visit her, go to Coaching for Love.
I'm glad you're here! My name is Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen; my husband Bruce and I live in Vancouver, BC with our critters. We can't have kids, and are learning to accept whatever life brings - both good and bad. I have an MSW (Master of Social Work) from UBC, and degrees in Education and Psychology. I hope you say hello below - I can't give relationship advice, but writing can bring you clarity and insight.