10 Ways to Love Your Spouse

We really like the 10 ways to show real love to your spouse:

  1. Listen without interrupting (Proverbs 18).
  2. Speak without accusing (James 1:19).
  3. Give without holding back (Proverbs 21:26).
  4. Pray without ceasing (Colossians 1:9).
  5. Answer without arguing (Proverbs 17:1).
  6. Share without pretending (Ephesians 4:15).
  7. Enjoy without complaining (Philippians 2:14).
  8. Trust without wavering (Corinthians 13:7).
  9. Forgive without punishing (Colossians 3:13).
  10. Promise without forgetting (Proverbs 13:12).

And here’s a handy reminder image you can save or share:

10 ways to love

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Assertiveness and Active Listening: How to Ask for What You Want in Your Marriage.

Great communication creates a healthy, happy marriage.

Two communication skills we can become even better, at are:

  1. Assertiveness, and
  2. Active listening.

Assertiveness is asking for what you want and the ability to express your feelings.

Active listening is letting your spouse know that you understand them…not only what they are saying, but how they are feeling.

The couples who get this right enjoy a much happier marriage!

Watch as Andy and Katy Gillis take their couples through the steps to develop and deepen their Assertiveness and Active Listening skills in this marriage enrichment video:

Bottom line is: when each person knows that they can share their request and feelings without fear of judgment or criticism, and that their spouse listens and understands how they feel, intimacy is increased.

Assertiveness and Active Listening skills will help you become a Power Couple! 

SNAG THE FREE TOOL: Subscribe to our email list to receive the “Assertiveness and Active Listening” worksheet, and all of our new couple tools.

Know a friend who needs to see this?  Share it.

*Andy and Katy host the Real Marriage Facebook LIVE show, every Sunday night.  Visit their Facebook Page to tune in or watch their latest show!

Strengths and Growth Areas in Your Marriage

“Strengths develop by working through issues.”

Being married for 11 years now, we know that’s right!

Do you feel that you and your spouse:
– Share feelings and understand each other?
– Appreciate each other’s personality and habits?
– Feel good about sexual intimacy and affection?
– Agree on how to share decision-making and responsibilities?

Even if a relationship is good, it can always get better, and last week’s show provided an excellent opportunity for growth!

Watch as we dive into 9 key couple areas and show you how to discover which ones are strengths, and which ones are growth areas in your own relationship:

No matter where you are in your relationship – if you’re dating, engaged, newlywed, married a while, or empty-nesters – you can use this tool to strengthen your relationship and enjoy deeper intimacy with your spouse.

The benefit from knowing your unique strength and growth areas is awareness.  If you know how your spouse feels about each area, and you define how you feel about that same area, you are able to come together and have a conversation about the differences.

Once you can discuss it, you can put a plan of action together for how you will help make the growth area a strength in your marriage.

One important point to consider is that most couples will have different answers, and different is not bad – it’s just different.

The goal is to become aware of how you both feel, communicate about it, and then work to grow into an even better team.

Snag the tool here: Strength and Growth Areas Worksheet 

Subscribe: join our email list to receive the all of our couple tools and worksheets!

Watch the live show: Andy and Katy Gillis host the Real Marriage FB LIVE Show every Sunday night at 9 pm EST.  Visit their Facebook page to tune in and to watch their latest shows.

I feel like I’m the only one trying to make our marriage work

“I feel like I’m the only one trying to make our marriage work.”

This is a comment we receive quite often, and the solution is not “one size fits all,” because each marriage is the unique partnership between two people. It’s tough when you feel like your spouse is not “pulling their weight” or even willing to work on your marriage at all.

However, we’ve found that even when there are great challenges in the relationship, the other person usually DOES want to make things better, regardless of whether they say so or act like it.

Most of the time they don’t know how to move forward, or may not feel comfortable talking about the subject with their partner because of the tension it brings (why start a conversation when you think it might end badly?)

No matter how good we are, we can always get better.

How you approach your partner, how you treat them, and the expectations you hold them to all play a part in how they will respond to your request to “work on the marriage” along with you.

Tune into the Real Marriage show this Sunday at 9 pm EST for “Marriage Expectations”

Learn how to become aware, and then release one another, of any unmet expectations that may be keeping you from growing together.

Know a couple who needs to see this? Share it.

“Unmet expectations” can be a huge barrier to intimacy in your marriage.

The “Sunday Night Meeting.”

The #1 Killer of marriage is poor communication.

Good communication is not something we’re born with, but a skill that can be learned and developed over time, and communicating better in your marriage will help you grow closer as a couple.

Our favorite marriage communication tool: the Sunday Night Meeting!

“The Sunday Night Meeting” is where you set aside time each week to reconnect as a couple.  It inspires communication, support, connection, and all of that will deepen intimacy…which is always a good thing!

This video clip (from our live Real Marriage show) explains how to have a Sunday Night Meeting with your spouse:

PS – as shown in the video, we created a handy “Sunday Night Meeting” Agenda that we send every one of our email subscribers, and would love to send to you to use as a guide! Click here to join the Real Marriage email list and you’ll receive the Sunday Night Meeting Agenda in your inbox!

The Story behind the Sunday Night Meeting:

A few years into our marriage, Andy and I (Katy) hired a business coach to help us with one of our businesses.  She encouraged us to meet once a week with our team to talk about what’s going on in the business, talk about the week, and outsource and collaborate on various projects to work as a more effective team.  It was sure to bring about serious growth and increase productivity (what a great idea!).

That night, while lying in bed about to drift into dreamland, I had an aha-moment inspired by that great business advice:

“Andy!” I said as I nudged his arm with my elbow, “Have you noticed that we’ve been together for 4 years now, and we argue about the same things we argued about from the beginning?” without hesitation he answered “Yes, I’ve been thinking the same thing! We have been investing so much into growing our careers and business, but we haven’t grown our marriage much at all.”  Ouch!

Life as a young couple was a bit hectic and fast-paced, so one of the things we decided to begin doing was to meet once a week to reconnect as a couple. 

We call it “The Sunday Night Meeting,” and we’ve been doing it ever since.

Not a date – although those are fun, too – but a actual meeting.

Marriage is a partnership…a husband and wife, a team.  Just like great teams meet regularly, so could we if we wished to build a great marriage!

So a “Sunday Night Meeting” was added to our schedule, and the appointment kept.

The goal of our Sunday Night Meeting:

For a couple to communicate on two key areas:

  1. What is going on in our life this week?
  2. How is our marriage?

The Benefits?

We felt the love after our very first meeting, and have been doing them ever since!

I (Katy) felt more connected to Andy as I shared my schedule with him and he offered to help me with some of the items on it (for example, on the day of my doctor’s visit, he cooked dinner.)  And I felt like I could support him better (for example, praying for him if he had a big meeting at work.)

Andy feels the same benefits, and ads: “Knowing what’s going on each week has let me see more opportunities to grow our marriage, and I feel more connected to Katy.”

I love it when Andy asks “What would you like me to do to better our marriage this week?” What a gift to have that question asked, and be able to answer it!

Our marriage has grown tremendously over the years of hosting our Sunday Night Meetings, and now in our premarital and marriage ministry work at Real Marriage we encourage every one of our couples to use or create a similar “Marriage Check-In” like the Sunday Night Meeting that will help them communicate and work even better as a team.

We would love to know if you meet with your spouse, and what benefits you’ve received through doing so.  Join the conversation on our Facebook Page or post a quick comment below.