A Better Marriage in 2013 IS Possible

Love & Learn 4

How to have a better marriage in 2013As much as I want to roll my eyes at people making New Year's resolutions, I'd have to roll them right back at myself because every year, with a bit of reluctance, I make them.

Maybe it's because at my core, I'm a list writer, and the crossing-off of each item gives me some sort of high. Or perhaps it's just because I like the idea of going into a new year with a set of aspirations.

But this year, instead of writing lofty goals like "work on my marriage" (because you know that's on my list), I'm breaking my resolutions down into smaller, more achievable objectives. And if you're like me and want to make changes to your own relationship in 2013, maybe you'll join me in working on crossing these off over the coming year.

1. Schedule at least one date night a month

This resolution will be much harder than it sounds because my husband's travel schedule makes it difficult to schedule anything; however, we need more time alone outside of the house. My plan is to book our sitter the second I get his schedule every month and then worry about what to do for date night later.

2. Return to therapy on a regular basis

Indeed, another casualty of our schedules and the therapist we chose (she only works on Mondays and Tuesdays) has meant that we haven't been to a marriage therapy session in awhile. That being said, even if it's just once a month, I want to be sure we've got a counseling session on the books because even the few that we attended really helped us.

3. Continue to communicate more effectively

I feel confident that my communication skills have gotten much better over the last few months, and I've definitely reaped the benefits of being more open and honest in a way that's constructive and not destructive. Hopefully, my husband will take the cue from me as well. Quite frankly, he needs a lot of work in this area and I can only do so much.

4. Take time for myself

To be a better partner, I need to have time to myself. I'm only sorry that it took me so long to listen to friends and family, heck even myself. I must have time alone! Whether it's a couple of hours getting a pedicure, or sitting quietly at a coffee shop just reading and not looking at a computer screen, then so be it.

5. Let things go, when appropriate

I'm a terrible score-keeper, partially because I have a good memory and, I'll be honest, partially because my husband doesn't apologize for things and repeats certain negative behaviors over and over. And so what happens is that the grievances pile up until they all come shooting out of me. I'm learning to address things when they happen, and not let them fester. And also discerning what's really worth getting upset about and what I should just let go. 

What do you want to work on in your relationship in 2013?

 

Photo via Aunt Owwee/Flickr

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LoveM... LoveMyViolet

It seems I have a similar marraige to yours. I too could benefit from these resolutions and I will indeed try, although I have to go to therapy alone since I cannot convince my husband to go.

Wheep... Wheepingchree

I hope we can have more date nights and work better together financially. I've been thinking of beginning marriage therapy, too. We don't have issues (yet), but can have trouble communicating sometimes. Couldn't hurt to start before things get difficult.

nonmember avatar Beth G from SJ

Two things that have helped my marriage on your list - date night & time to myself. Our therapist was adamant that I had to come first in my life in order to have a happy, healthy marriage & family. She was right - for years I put myself on the back burner & we all suffered from it. Date night too, she said if we are lo on finances to go for a walk. If its too cold drive to a mall & walk around. We listened & it's amazing what even an hour alone can do. I just need to work on communication again instead of huffing & puffing & slamming cabinets. Good luck!

nonmember avatar Amy

We will party more, to the movies more and have more wild sex.



Our youngest will turn 2 in July so partying, movie going and sexing have been limited!



Hmmm...also my husband will write me a love poem and make dinner (and do the dishes afterwards!) at least 2 nights a week. That's my resolution - ha!

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