It’s a law of nature; you get what you give. Great marriages aren’t accidents. But even if you wouldn’t call your marriage “great,” you can turn it around. While every marriage is different, there are certain universal guidelines by which every married man–and woman– should live. So what does it take to be a great husband, and in turn, have a happy marriage?
If you want to make sure you’re doing a great job as a husband, then there are some things you’ll want to make sure you’re doing — that will result in a happy marriage, too.
1. Compliment her often, genuinely and unconditionally
Don’t hesitate to tell her how great she looks or smells. Remember when your relationship was fresh and the compliments came out of your mouth thick and fast? Make this a part of your daily routine. Every person on this planet could use a little feel-good compliment to brighten their day. And by sharing your love with her in this way, she’s likely to return the favor.
2. Kiss her every morning
According to experts, a kiss in the morning, a hug after work, and another kiss before bed can produce a lasting feeling of intimacy. Kissing promotes bonding because it is thought to raise levels of oxytocin (the so-called “cuddle hormone”) while lowering cortisol (a stress hormone).
3. Surprise her
Just because you’ve put a ring in her finger, doesn’t mean you should stop trying to win her affection. Every once in a while, make the same sweet romantic gestures that you did in the beginning of the relationship. Bring her flowers, get tickets to her favorite show, or plan a surprise romantic evening.
4. Be willing to compromise
A healthy relationship is a two-way street. Over the course of your marriage, you will inevitably have to give up certain things to make her happy, and vice versa. If one of you is constantly giving in to the other’s demands without any reciprocation, there will likely be some resentment down the road.
5. Show more acceptance and less judgment
Accept what your wife likes to do on a lazy weekend morning; or the time she spends on the telephone catching up with friends and family; or the hobbies that fuel her passion. Keep your critical comments quiet, resist the urge to judge and accept your wife’s habits (and quirks) because they make her into the beautiful person you fall in love with.
6. Put your relationship before your ego
So many arguments are about one person being right, instead of doing what is best for the relationship. Proving your point in an argument often outweighs the negative effect that it can have on your relationship. Ask yourself: “Is it really worth the stress on our relationship just to prove I’m right?”
7. Show your appreciation
Showing appreciation can be as simple as saying “please” and “thank you.” You want to sprinkle these displays of your appreciation into your daily conversations with her. Some examples of moments to show appreciation include after she cooks a meal, spends quality time with you, goes grocery shopping, or when she wakes up with the crying baby in the middle of the night. These little gestures go a long way in maintaining long-term happiness.
8. Do small things for her
Do you think small things really don’t matter? You are so wrong. Small things aren’t small. They are huge and can have a great impact on how she feels about you and your relationship. It is romantic as hell to leave a love note in her car, or pick up her cleaning so she doesn’t have to. Give her a neck massage. Leave a voice mail to let her know you were just thinking about her. She loves knowing you are thinking of her.
9. Help out around the house.
Help balance out the workload by doing dishes, vacuuming, cleaning the bathrooms, doing yard work, handling repairs, and so on. The key is to help out around the house even when you have not explicitly been asked to do so. Remember that it is as much your obligation as it is your wife’s to keep the house clean and in shape. Doing things around the house shows your wife that you care for her.
10. Believe in yourself
One thing we are good at as men is being confident in our careers. And confident husbands are considered sexy by their wives. Be confident in how you love her, provide for her, and support her in your marriage, too.