With all of this talk over the last few weeks in our blog posts about communication, we’d be remiss if we didn’t include important tips and marriage hacks when it comes to improving your daily marriage dialogue and daily compliments.
We do this because it’s so easy to get caught up in our busy lives that we as couples forget to have all the little conversations that ultimately make a big difference in how well we communicate. We get caught in a cycle where we stop talking about anything meaningful. As a result, we don’t connect like we used to. Engaging in daily dialogue, even if it’s a simple, “What’s going on in your world?” and daily compliments are two ways of helping your relationship become healthier. While awkward at first, the more you share your feelings, the easier it will become to do so.
“Marriage is a team sport; you either win together or lose together.”
The focus of daily dialogue is your feelings about each other and your life together. Furthermore, giving at least one daily compliment to each other will help you focus on your strengths as individuals and highlight the positive things you see in each other. Daily compliments prevent your relationship from becoming routine and make it more mutually satisfying.
Daily Marriage Dialogue Basics
- Look for the good in the other and give your spouse a compliment.
- Praise the other as much as possible.
- Take time to listen to each other.
- Listen to understand — not to judge.
- Use active and attentive listening, which involves emotional presence and listening to understand each other’s comments before you share your reactions or feelings.
- Be assertive. Share your feelings using “I” statements (i.e., I feel… or I think…).
- When issues arise, avoid defensiveness or blaming, and seek understanding and solutions.
A key here is to remember that you don’t have to be perfect at daily marriage dialogue or daily compliments the first time you try. You also don’t have to feel like you need to fix your marriage in one fell swoop. It takes time and daily intentionality. That’s why we suggest setting aside at least five minutes per day and 15 minutes on the weekends to discuss:
Easy Marriage Dialogue Starters
- What you most enjoyed about your relationship that day
- What could be better about your relationship that day
Think long and hard about each question, and really try to give your spouse specific answers — not generalizations. For example, perhaps your answer to what went well between the two of you today could be that you really enjoyed that kiss goodbye before leaving for work. In terms of what’s that one thing your spouse can do for you, perhaps it’s as simple as requesting more help with the kids each morning.
As you ask these questions, be mindful of the following:
- Your spouse deserves your full attention. Don’t watch your favorite TV show or respond to someone’s text messages at the same time. Make eye contact and have a purposeful conversation.
- Avoid criticism. It’s easy to get defensive when a spouse shares their thoughts and feelings — especially if it’s related to something you aren’t providing in the relationship. Don’t point fingers, don’t criticize. Accept what you can.
- Heap praise. Focus on as many positives as you can about your relationship. Doing so builds each other up and makes it easier to work through the stuff that isn’t so positive.
- Be solutions-minded. Compromise. Help each other find solutions to try to whatever problem you are facing.
- Seek counseling. Going to someone else for help with larger issues is not a bad thing. It’s okay.
Communicating love to your kids!
The daily marriage dialogue and compliment exercises above are also great for communicating with your children.
- Say, “I love you.”
- Touch naturally and comfortably.
- Spend time in friendly conversations about activities of the day.
- Discipline is administered in an even tone of voice.
- Let kids have freedom when structure is not necessary.
- Set aside critical remarks (never appropriate) in favor of reassurance and compliments.
- Openly solicit the child’s point of view and take into consideration on major decisions.
- Regularly encourage them to talk openly about personal feelings and delicate subjects.
- Parent together. Meet regularly and privately to discuss handling discipline together.
All we are saying is that we as couples need to show that we are on the same page and that the little things matter. Life can get super busy with all sorts of daily tasks, and it can be easy to focus on those things rather than intentional, focused communication. The daily dialogue and daily compliment exercises above will help get you back on track.
We care about You and Your marriage!
Do you have the tools to communicate better in your marriage? Let us help. Send us your question in the email below! Plus, YOU are the best way we know to spread the word about Great Marriage. Forward one of our blogs to a friend today!
Did we leave anything out? What are a few ways you are improving your daily dialogue? Did you enjoy the exercises above? Please send us a quick email and help us keep this conversation going at Mike@MikeandSusanDawson.com.