4 Tips to Revive Your Marriage in the New Year

September, October, November, December. The “Ber” months represent wonderful things for many people. They are about pumpkin spice lattes, and cooler sweater weather. They bring joy to Houstonians eagerly waiting to escape the scorching heat of July and August. But this joy is often suffocated with the dark side to the “ber’ months. One minute you are talking back to school and Labor Day weekend plans and the next, your calendar is saturated with social and life obligations. Fall photos, pumpkin patches, birthday parties, PTA activities, and the dreaded winter cold/flu {or COVID} that travels through the entire family.

Thankfully, we get a break from school activities for a couple of weeks but then it’s holiday photos, figuring out what to do with your Elf, decorating the house, holiday parties, and what seems like endless list of social activities for the adults and the children. The holidays for many couples can be especially challenging. The season can be tense with gifting obligations and navigating the nuances of your extended family. If your mother-in-law makes one more comment about your parenting…! Maybe you have a spouse who “forgot” to get you anything for Christmas. You might find yourself in more conflicts with your spouse. Don’t completely freak out yet. You are not alone.

Did you know that January is among the highest month for people researching and filing for divorce?

If you made it to January without googling divorce lawyers or considering divorce, congratulations. Now, how do we make sure you make it to Valentine’s Day and beyond? You and your spouse have spent the last three months pouring into everyone and everything but your relationship- that happens often to many of us. Here are some tips to help stay connected and revive your marriage in the new year.

Take Care of Yourself

woman laying on bed writing in journalI know it’s cliché, but the most important thing for both you and your spouse to do now for your marriage is SELF CARE! Yes, I’m shouting, but it’s the I want what’s best for you shout. The get out of the way so you don’t get hit by a car shout. This looks different for everyone, but for me, it’s getting in regularly with my therapist. It’s exercising, even if it’s just a 30 minute walk in the neighborhood. It is also going to bed early so I can wake up early to do my devotion and journaling. Remember, you can’t pour out if you are empty.

Date Your Spouse

calendar with "Date Night" on itThe next tip for reviving your marriage involves the two of you sitting down the first few days of January and actually block out your date days or nights. Yes, they don’t have to be nights. Life is complicated; don’t add to it. Just pick a day and time that works best with your schedule. The most important part of this is that you both must commit to what is considered “emergency” that would make you cancel or need to reschedule. No, work things are not emergencies. If you add this to your calendar, people won’t invite you to meetings when your calendar says you are unavailable. Depending on the time of the day you chose to have your dates, childcare might not be necessary. If it is necessary, this is the time to find reliable sitters.

Plan Time Together

This tip is related to the last one. Go online and search for date ideas and others you may be thinking about. Type them out, print them and put them in a date box, jar or envelope – whatever works for the two of you. This way, you don’t have to think of new ideas each week or month. If you can take turns planning the dates, even better, but do whatever works for your relationship. A side note, pick the date idea the week before which helps with anticipation and planning. Nothing like picking a new spot that requires reservations the day of to ruin your plans.

Learn Each Other’s Love Languages

man putting clothes in dryerLast but certainly not least, rediscover your sweetheart. If you haven’t already, read up on the Five Love Language {Words of Affirmation, Acts of Service, Quality Time, Physical Touch, and Gifts}. Take the online quiz. Talk to your spouse and figure out yours and theirs. Understanding the love languages will help you serve them and vice versa. If you can, read the book; it goes into details about each one and offers ideas on how to show love to your spouse in a way that will make them feel loved based on their love language.

Relationships with anyone take effort, and your marriage is no different. We must put in the work to enjoy the benefits. So, no matter what self-care looks like for you, find the time to take care of yourself. Step up in dating your spouse by being consistent with the dates. This is when you get to learn more about them. Use the information you gather, along with their love language, to serve them. Wishing you a Happy New Year and a healthy and thriving marriage.


 

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Ese is a proud Nigerian American who spent most of her teenage years and adult life in Cincinnati, Ohio. She moved to Houston in 2012. Ese is a bonus, foster/adoptive and IVF mom. Her journey to motherhood wasn’t traditional but it’s been a remarkable ride. She has a passion for people, and it is reflected in the different ways she’s involved in the community. As a Junior League of Houston member, she loves serving the community with other strong women. Her commitment to her faith serves as a foundation in all aspects of her life. She’s a proud Buckeye {OH-IO} and a lover of most sports. After spending a year in Mexico, Nigeria and Colombia, she and her family moved back to Houston in the Spring of 2019. Ese spent most of her professional career in the Manufacturing industry doing Export Compliance. She is known as one who has never met a stranger. She loves connecting with and bringing women together. She may not be a fan of the traffic in Houston, but she has fallen in love with the diverse people and the amazing food options the city offers. When she’s not working and running her small business, you can find her listening to books on audible, catching up on her favorite podcast, hosting brunch with new and old friends as well as connecting with her online girlfriends on Facebook.

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