If you Google ‘ways to make your wife happy during the holidays’ you won’t find jewelry ads with lots of bling or maid service sponsored ads. I know, I know, shocker! Truth be told, thoughtfulness goes a long way when it comes to women.

The holidays are a hectic time of the year – school plays, cookie exchanges, gift exchanges, classroom parties, family obligations, decorating and gift purchases are just some of the major holiday to-dos most wives are responsible for. (Honestly, the list of things is constantly growing every day.) Sometimes, amidst the hustle and bustle, your wife may feel overwhelmed and stressed. But, fear not! There are several ways you can make your wife happy during the holidays.

Go ahead, take notes and consider adding these simple tasks to your calendar – this way you have a helpful reminder.

Take the Lead on Dinner (more than once)

The one question, every family must answer every day is, “What are we eating for dinner?” Instead of asking the question, come up with a plan. Is there a special dish your family loves? Does your wife have a special meal she really enjoys? Whether it is going to the grocery store to pick up the ingredients or curbside to go, make a decision on dinner.

Your wife will appreciate a less stressful evening – maybe she can relax or focus on something else that needs to be done. You can even take it a step further by cleaning up afterwards or asking the children to partake in super work.

Leave a Sweet Note

Who doesn’t appreciate unexpected encouraging words? Husbands, you can do this in a number of ways. Send a text message. Write a note and leave it in her car. Leave a note in her lunchbox. Write words of encouragement on the bathroom mirror – literally – use a dry erase marker and write on the mirror.

Need some help with writing? Don’t overthink it. Be simple and direct. “You rock!” “I am blown away by your awesomeness.” “Thank you.” “I am so lucky to be your husband.” “Thanks for [insert something your wife recently did for you and/or the family].

Your wife will appreciate the thoughtfulness and the kind gesture.

Listen

Ask your wife how she’s doing? Sometimes just being intentional and listening to your spouse is all she needs. The daily grind can be challenging. When you add children and a career to the mix, things can feel intense. Giving your wife the chance to unload and share her feelings will be therapeutic. We all want to be heard.

Household Chores

The key to this gesture is doing them without being asked. Instead of asking for a list of chores that need to be done, be proactive and go for it. Most men are hesitant to jump in and help because their wife likes things done a certain way. While this may be true, the thoughtfulness of helping her out will go a long way – especially if she is bogged down with other demands because of the holiday schedule.

Consider asking the children to help long-term. During the holiday season, assign additional chores in order to free up your wife’s time. The stress associated with assigning chores can also be problematic, but if you delegate those assignments it will make things much easier for the entire household.

Offer Gift Suggestions and/or Do the Shopping: The disclaimer to this having a conversation about your household’s gift budget beforehand. Shopping can be stressful when you are trying to get the perfect gift for everyone on your list – especially if your list is on the longer side. Offer to shop for your side of the family’s gifts or volunteer to pick up the items from the store.

If there is research involved with a purchase, you can offer to take that on and report back with your findings. The holiday season isn’t supposed to be inundated with stressful purchases – so, take the stress off of your wife’s shoulders.

Holiday Blues

It’s inevitable, the holiday can invoke sad memories or hard times. Sadness and depression are common during the holiday season. Knowing that, take the initiative to help your wife during these troublesome times. Maybe she’s not super sentimental but allowing her to talk about her feelings could be exactly what she needs. Or maybe she is super sentimental and making a special dinner or planning a date night is what she’d appreciate.

The disclaimer to this suggestion is knowing that you cannot fix everything. Your kind gesture and observation are not going to heal the sadness; however, it will remind your wife about the things in life that are working.

Dad + Kid Day

Give your wife some breathing room by taking the kids out of the house for a day. It is your wife’s choice if she wants to have a self-care day or knock things off the to-do list. Either way, be proactive and recognize how much your wife is doing by giving her some alone time.

It doesn’t have to be an entire day or be fancy. Take the kids to the library, a park or even out for ice cream. This will also be a great opportunity to spend quality one-on-one time with your children.

Thoughtful Gesture

Okay, I know I said gifts are not always the answer but sometimes a thoughtful inexpensive gift can go a long way. Leave your wife’s favorite snack on the table with a sweet note. Rent a movie that she’s wanted to see for a while. Opt to give her one of her holiday gifts early. But if you bought her something for the kitchen or house, select a different gift – you don’t want her to feel like she must cook or clean.

The holidays are supposed to be a season of gratitude and thankfulness. But sometimes those themes get lost in the rush of making everything perfect and everyone happy. Your wife takes on so much during the holidays so, going the extra mile will show her that you see her and appreciate everything she is doing.

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