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Relationships can be hard work. Between jobs, kids, bills and the stresses of life in general, it’s easy to find yourself disconnected from your spouse. But a strong, healthy, connected relationship will help you stand the test of time, and be happy along the way.
Here are seven great ways to deepen your relationship and be a happier couple.
1. Perform random acts of kindness. Small gestures that say “I’m thinking of you” and “I love you” are essential to keep the relationship bond strong. Fill up your honey’s gas tank or serve coffee in bed. Hold hands, hug and show affection. Research suggests that small gestures done frequently are more impactful on your overall happiness than grand, less frequent gestures.
2. Accept your spouse’s individuality. We have all had those times when we wished our partner was more romantic, had a better sense of humor or enjoyed different hobbies. But accepting someone for who they are is part of loving them. There are probably things about you that your spouse wishes were different too!
3. Spend 10 minutes a day to connecting to each other. Most couples think they talk to each other all the time, sometimes too often. But how often do you talk about things that really deepen your understanding of each other? Set aside just 10 minutes a day to talk to your spouse about anything other than work, family, the household, or the relationship. Instead, talk about your hopes, dreams, goals and desires. Learn something new about your spouse every day.
4. Change and grow — together. Your relationship is a living entity that needs to be nourished regularly in order to grow and develop. The best way to nurture it is to continually change and evolve. Regular change in relationships has been shown to be a key ingredient to long-term happiness. The changes can be small, but they have to upset the routine enough to make your spouse take notice. Call in sick to work and spend the day doing something fun together, like visiting a museum or going on a
6. Get to know each other’s friends and family. Research found that men tend to be happier when his spouse has a good relationship with his family. And couples who accept each other’s friends and make an effort to get to know them report being happier than couples who have their separate friends.
7. Keep it light. Laughter acts as happiness medicine in a marriage. To keep your relationship from becoming boring, balance the normal, daily aspects of your relationship with the fun and laughter. Don’t forget to play and enjoy time your time together.
Print out your own copy of 20 simple things to do here: 20-small-things-that-will-make-a-big-difference-in-your-marriage