Valentine’s Day has come and gone and I did not do anything special, in fact I didn’t even say Happy Valentine’s Day. It was a normal day. I believe everyday should be a celebration of love, without the need for the calendar to remind us. And while the sentiment is nice and I am certainly not condemning it, it is important to recognize the principles behind Valentine’s Day and implement them into everyday life, in order to have a flourishing marriage.
On that one special day, we go out of our way to do something for our spouses. We say I love you. We treat them well, spend time alone together. We celebrate our love with endearing words on social media, and express our gratitude. For one day, we focus on love. Afterward, life falls back in order with the hope that it was enough to get your relationship through the next chapter in life. But to do that, our actions need to be intentional. Our actions need to continue the trend, and the answers to many conflicts are wrapped up underneath the buzz of a holiday. What does it mean to love?
Starting today, love intentionally. Mark it in your calendar. For the next 14 days I want you to continue to celebrate your marriage. Surprisingly, a lot of marital conflicts and dullness is a result of being comfortable and complacent. Do you want to improve your marriage? Just by your actions alone, you have the power to do so. In order to cultivate love you cannot focus on what’s in it for you. However, the effect on your relationship will likely benefit you in the long run, if you implement this into your life.
14 Day Challenge:
Each day make an effort to do these things:
- Say I love you. The more often the better.
- Date them. Yes, everyday. However that does not have to mean dinner out. It is as simple as having time alone together everyday. Put the kids to bed, turn the TV off, put the cellphone down, and pay attention to your spouse.
- Say thank you. It would be common courtesy to a stranger, and yet our spouses often miss out on this. An attitude of gratitude can really bring out the way you feel about your spouse. Suddenly conflicts seem small, and you’ll be remembering how lucky you are.
- Be mindful of when and how you speak. Nagging, yelling, name calling, and criticizing are all damaging to your relationship. Walk it off, repay negativity with kindness.
- Do an act of kindness. Go out of your way to do something, make his coffee, take the trash out, make her favourite food, get creative. It can be simple, but meaningful.
- Finally, lighten up. Have fun. Flirt. You know, the way you used to? It’s still there. Stress and responsibilities often come in and that is totally normal. But don’t forget it’s there, and can be a stress reliever.
That’s it. 6 simple easy things that we make an effort to do on Valentine’s Day, but all to often overlook in everyday life. Marriage is so special, and so worth every bit of effort you put in it. It is the foundation for the next generations. How you interact and treat your spouse will also leave an imprint in your children’s lives, grandchildren, and so on. Love with everything you’ve got, and don’t let fear or complacency stand in the way.