One of the most frustrating things on earth is when you reach into your pocket to pull out your smart phone and realize it's completely out of power. You remember that you didn't charge it up, and now, it's dead. You won't be able to play Candy Crush or check facebook or text anybody until you find a way to recharge it.
When something is important to us, we need to make sure it stays charged up.
Think about this simple concept in terms of your marriage. If your marriage is important to you, shouldn't you be intentional about "recharging" it daily? Shouldn't you make sure you're doing everything in your power to keep your relationship with your husband or wife powered up at all times?
Most of us would say we want a fully charged, marriage, but we don't always know how to do it. There's not a simple instruction manual or a plug attached to your spouse you can just connect into an outlet. No, recharging a marriage requires much more effort than recharging a phone.
Luckily, it's not as difficult as you may think. Below are ten simple ways you can add a daily dose of energy to your marriage.
In no particular order...
1. Give a foot rub
This might not sound glamorous, but it's very helpful. When you're touching your spouse (and not just sexual touch), it connects you on a physical and emotional level. Your conversations become deeper when you're touching while you talk. Plus, your spouse will really appreciate the massage!
2. Go to bed at the same time
This one isn't always practical, but do it as much as you can. "Pillow Talk" makes for some of a couple's most intimate conversations, plus there a lot more than talking you can do together in the bedroom!
3. Outlaw criticism
I'm convinced that criticism (which can sometimes manifest itself in sarcasm) is one of the leading causes of marriage breakdowns. Your words have power to build up or to tear down. Your spouse needs you to be his/her biggest encourager; not their biggest critic!
4. Digital detox
As much as you can, turn off off your phones when you're around each other. Also, have some time together daily (even if it's only fifteen minutes or so) with no TV or distractions of any kind. Just talk. Enjoy each other free from all the noise of the outside world.
5. Flirt throughout the day
Every chance you get, give your spouse a call or send a flirtatious text message. Let them know they're on your mind all day.
6. Find some good "couple friends."
Don't just have "his friends" and "her friends." Find some couples who have healthy marriages, strong values and fun personalities and enjoy time together with them. We end up becoming like the people we hang around the most.
7. Listen (don't just pretend to be listening)
Most of us are pretty good at giving the minimum amount of focus required to make our spouse think we're really listening. Instead, give your spouse your full, focused attention. We communicate our love by our listening even more than we do by our words.
This one might freak some of you out, but I believe prayer is one of the most intimate acts a couple can share. End your day by holding hands and thanking God for each other (out loud) and asking Him to guide your steps. A marriage built on a foundation of faith is a strong marriage.
Laughter should be the soundtrack of your life. Never laugh at each other, but always laugh with each other! Don't take yourself too seriously or your marriage too lightly.
Never think you've got it all figured out. Keep learning and growing together.
This article was originally published on Patheos. It has been republished here with permission.