Marriages change over time. Couples who are able to navigate the ebb and flow of their relationships have an advantage in doing better over the long haul.
Consider for a moment how much you’ve changed in your maturity, likes, dislikes, priorities, stressors, life experiences, etc. If you haven’t changed a bit – consider yourself extremely unique.
Most of us experience a change in ourselves to some degree over time. A marriage or long-term relationship will also change.
Here are a few ways couples can navigate the inevitable change of their marriage:
- Check-in with each other periodically.
- How are things going?
- How are you doing?
- How are we doing?
- Make adjustments in the way things have always been done.
- Break routines
- Do things differently
- Shake it up a bit
- Prioritize your relationship. It’s very easy to take your eyes off of each other, especially after having children and other life stressors show up.
- Get away. An overnight can do wonders for your relationship. Don’t underestimate the power of a new environment away from your routines and responsibilities.
- Laugh and create new memories. Don’t allow a negativity bias to creep up in your relationship. Counter it with some good laughs and positive experiences to counteract negative experiences.
Just because your marriage has “changed” isn’t automatically cause for alarm. It’s about addressing the change together honestly and finding creative ways to adapt to that change.
If you are concerned that so much has changed at this point that your marriage feels disconnected and the gap too wide to bridge without assistance, find a local couples counselor to help. If you’re not quite ready for couples counseling you can try my tool for couples, The Marriage Refresher Course Workbook for Couples, to help you strengthen the foundation of your relationship.