5 Areas You Can Affirm Your Spouse In

Affirmation is a key element in any thriving marriage. An often unspoken, underlying cause of much discontent and frustration between husband and wife is when one or both of them feels unappreciated.

According to Gary Chapman, words of affirmation is one of the five major ways that a person can feel loved. But even if you or your spouse doesn’t have words of affirmation as your top love language, it’s still a necessary part of any conversation between the two of you, so you can grow closer together.

In our family, one of Daniel’s favorite traditions is our Christmas/New Year letters. Each of us writes a letter to all the other members of the family, and we open them together on New Year’s Eve. We have this long-standing joke that he only likes it because he gets to read what all our kids like about him!

But it’s not just him; every person desires to feel appreciated and loved, and what better way to get it than from our own spouse, and vice versa? In fact, do you know that’s one of the best ways to affair-proof your marriage?

Things that you affirm don't have to be something that your spouse can perform perfectly. Find areas that your spouse may be weak in but has committed to work on.
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5 Different Areas to Appreciate Your Spouse

Here are some creative ideas of expressing appreciation for your spouse:

1. What are some of his or her personality strengths?

One of the best ways to appreciate your spouse is to find something he or she is good at. Is he naturally empathetic when listening to people? Is she cheerful and the life of the party?

Sometimes, areas that irk us may actually be our spouse’s strength, and once we learn to appreciate these, it helps affirm who they are. And it also teaches us to see things from another perspective.

2. What things do they do well?

Personality is one area; another area to look at is the tasks they are adept at. For example, does your spouse cook well? Is he or she great at finding presents for the children? Does he build things excellently? These are great ways to appreciate your spouse in.

3. In what ways have they improved?

Sometimes, it doesn’t have to be something that your spouse can perform perfectly. Find some areas that your spouse may be weak in but has committed to work on. For example, has he held his temper in check more this week than last week? Has she kept nagging to a minimum, or improved in her time management?

Of course, for these areas, you will have to find ways to express appreciation in a way that doesn’t offend them! You might say something like, “I’m glad to see you managing your temper better this week.”

4. What things are they committed to?

Areas of commitment are also a ripe avenue for appreciation. For example, is your spouse committed to a healthy lifestyle? Commend their efforts. Even if the latest recipe she tried isn’t really to your liking, it’s a great thing that she’s doing to learn all about good health.

Are they doing everything they can to keep a weekly date time with your son or daughter? Not all parents can do that, so that’s worth your praise, too.

5. What things do they do for you or with you that you like?

Does your husband make you coffee in the mornings, or pick you up after work? Or, do you go to the movies once a week, or grab tea together every weekend? For Daniel and me, I love it when we take a walk and then sit down for a cup of tea at a hawker centre a few blocks away from our house before walking back home.

Think about shared experiences and possibly acts of service that they do for you, and appreciate those. Verbally affirming thta you love it when they spend time with you or do something for you can help confirm that they’re doing something that you notice and appreciate.

Finding Ways to Affirm Your Spouse

Regularly finding things to appreciate in your spouse is a great way to keep the fire kindled between you. Then, practice verbally expressing them, or if you’re not used to saying them out loud yet, consider saying them through text, too, until you get used to it and can try it verbally once in awhile.

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