10 Marriage Sweeteners
Harry T. Reis, a professor of psychology at the University of Rochester, has identified 10 ways couples can show ‘compassionate’ love to improve a relationship
- Put your partner’s goals first. Giving your husband the last cupcake is easy. Spending your vacation—again—with his family is hard.
- Try to understand your partner’s thoughts and feelings. Not sure what’s going on? Ask.
- Accept, don’t judge. Don’t like your spouse’s relatives, or his taste in clothes or TV shows? Zip it.
- Be open to your partner’s requests. Everyone is busy. If your spouse asks for something, assume it’s important.
- Modify your plans for your spouse’s sake. Does she need a night off from parenting, or a few hours to finish a work project? Accommodate and earn relationship goodwill.
- Do something special for your partner. Flowers are nice, but so is making the bed or giving a massage.
- Express tenderness and caring. Not everyone likes public displays of affection. But you can make a nice cup of tea.
- Go out of your way to ‘be there.’ Pay attention when your partner seems particularly stressed and try to help.
- Show respect and admiration. Celebrate successes, even little ones. Did your spouse handle a touchy situation well, or make you laugh? Point it out.
- Show you value your partner. Two words: Thank you.