Christian Living


8 Little Things That Make a Big Difference in Your Marriage

Doctors Les and Leslie Parrott offer these ideas to keep the love alive in your marriage.

1. Once a day take time to touch if only for a minute.

The value of human touch is almost incalculable. Eight to ten meaningful touches a day help you maintain emotional and physical health. Make a commitment to cultivate this valuable practice on a daily basis.

2. Once a day find something that makes you both laugh.

Laughter helps us cope. Laughter has been called "inner jogging" because every system in your body gets a workout when you have a hearty laugh. A marriage without a sense of humor is like a wagon without springs - jolted by every pebble in the road.

3. Once a week do something active that lifts your spirits.

Shared activity is one of the supreme gifts of married life, and it is an insurance policy against the fading of passion and intimacy. Shared is the key word here. Find activities that you both enjoy and make the time to do them together. "Love must be fed and nurtured . . . first and foremost it demands time."

4. Once a week boost your partner's self-esteem.

Encouragement is the finest gift you can give your spouse. This doesn't mean just handing out compliments or flattery. Find the things in your spouse's life that would help build them up in an area in which they are insecure. Make a list of all the things they do well and start from there.

5. Once a month rid yourselves of harmful residue.

Letting things build up day after day without discussing and resolving them leads to anger, resentment and eventually, if not discussed and resolved, loss of love for your partner. Rid your marriage of harmful residue with a regular tune-up.

6. Once a month fire up passion in the bedroom.

No, we're not suggesting you have sex only once a month. Sex is critically important for a quality marriage. Planning a special time once a month that both of you are anticipating and planning for can bring back the passion that has been missing.

7. Once a year review your top-ten highlights.

Sit together and look at a photo album, scrapbook or whatever you have collected that will remind you of the fun and special times you have had together since you have met.

8. Once a year chart your course for the coming year.

Charting the course of your marriage raises the quality of life for you and your family and keeps you from the "Someday Syndrome". Smart couples move beyond daydreams by charting their course for a reality where dreams come true.

Taken from the book The Love List by Drs. Les & Leslie Parrott. Used by permission of New Life Ministries. New Life Ministries has a variety of resources on men, women and relationships. Call 1-800-NEW-LIFE or visit www.newlife.com.

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