17 POSITIVE DECISIONS WE’VE MADE IN 17 YEARS OF MARRIAGE
174,288 hours. It’s the total number of hours we have been together since we said “I do”.
That’s a heck of a lot of time.
Over these hours and years we have made choices and decisions that have impacted us and our marriage for the better.
Some of these came after we experienced a low time in our marriage.
Others we’re put into place so that we would experience marriage to the fullest.
We hope these 17 positive decisions we consciously make in our marriage can help yours… no matter how long you’ve been married.
1. Never let your feelings determine how much you love each other
LOVE EACH OTHER — we know it sounds simple, right? And yet when times are tough feelings can wane. We decided after many years of marriage that our feelings we’re not going to determine our love for each other. Love is a verb and it’s our goal to show love every opportunity we have.
2. Take Divorce Off the Table
After two incidences we made the decision to take the word divorce out of our vocabulary once and for all. Now when issues arise we know that neither of us is going anywhere. We’re going to work through them together even if that means we seek out help.
3. Schedule Sex
Single handedly scheduling sex has allowed us to experience the joy we both desire in our sexual intimacy.
No more rejection, begging, or wondering when we are going to have sex. It’s scheduled and we’re good to go.
If you’re feeling like your partner is more like a roommate then a lover, you need to take the guesswork out of when you are going to get some.
4. Talk, Talk, & Talk Some More
This is the most vital decision we have made for sure. As we opened up and shared ourselves with each other our marriage has flourished. Learning that we communicated differently and then getting our communication on the same path was ground breaking.
5. Create Cell Free Zones
From the very beginning no electronics would come past our bedroom door. To this day even with the explosion of portable devices we still do not allow electronics in our bedroom.
Our sex life is between us. And so is our bedroom.
6. Date Nights are Still Crucial
At least once a month we make it a point to get out on a date.
We may go to dinner, paddle boarding, or a walking along the beach. Whatever it is it’s only the two of us. And, same as above… electronics, (read: cell phones)stay in the car or at home.
If you need a few date ideas to put on your calendar, check out these date ideas.
7. Share Who Takes the Lead on Dates
It was important to us that BOTH of us planned dates.
This helped us prevent burnout and made dating feel more like team work again.
Don’t make one spouse have to come up with an idea or plan.
Decide each month that one of you will take the lead.
Ready to pencil your partner back into your calendar? You may enjoy this podcast on our process for sharing the planning for our date nights.
8. Take the guesswork out of when you’ll “get some”
Sex is about more than a physical connection, it’s a time for you and your partner to return to yourselves spiritually, show vulnerability and connect in only the way you two can.
Sex needs to be on your calendar the way all your other priorities are.
If you’re bedroom feels more like a fizzle than a wildfire, let us help you kick start it with a 7 Days of Sex Challenge.
We love to do one of these challenges every year to remind us to keep intimacy on the schedule the way we do our careers, business, and kids.
9. At least one kid-free adventure for us once a year
At least once a year, (usually around our anniversary), we plan a special getaway without the kids.
This time together has allowed us to see new places together and experience life as a couple.
One day the kids are going to leave and we want to be ready for that day.
10. We Adopted The Intimacy Lifestyle
The Intimacy Lifestyle is about making sexual intimacy a priority in your marriage each and every week throughout the year.
Sexual intimacy in your marriage is important because it’s also a pathway to other forms of intimacy. It encourages engaging each other in emotional, spiritual, financial, intellectual, and recreational intimacy.
11. Snuggle up in your birthday suit 😉
I know, this may sound weird… but cuddle naked!
This is a more recent decision that we have made. After years of not cuddling or skin-on-skin contact we knew we needed to touch much more often.
Don’t forget to make time to cuddle with your spouse before and after great sex. It can do wonders for your marriage.
12. Keep the Romance Alive Over Time
Marriage is one of those things that doesn’t always get easier with time. You change, your spouse changes, and you’ve got to keep re-committing to growing together.
One way to do that is to never stop romancing one another.
Don’t feel defeated when you find yourself going through periods that lack romance. It’s a practice. And you get to keep re-committing to it over and over again.
Our marriage is a growth project between us and our partners that never ends.
13. Don’t be afraid to crank up the PDA!
Marriage is awesome! We want the world to know so we make it a point to kiss, hold hands, hug, and show appropriate affection inside and outside the house.
Inside the house we are leaving a legacy for our kids.
Outside we are letting others know we love each other.
14. Love, Marriage and a Bigger Belt Size?
Not in our marriage! (or hopefully yours).
But you can believe after 17 years of marriage t we don’t have the same bodies we had when we first got married.
One decision we made early in our marriage was to support our each others fitness and health goals. Why?
Because it keeps our self confidence in the bedroom, it de-stresses us, and also helps us set a great example for our children.
15. Don’t let debt drain the happiness out of your marriage
Six words that describe the first 6 years of our marriage:
$50K in debt and stressed out.
When we came across Dave Ramsey and his easy debt busting methods, it saved our marriage and sex life!
In getting out of debt you’ll learn a lot and deepen your financial intimacy together.
16. Talk about taboo topics
Especially your sex life.
We would discuss sex in the moment while in bed and yet there is more to our sexual intimacy.
Sex is beautiful in the marriage bed so we needed to talk about it before we even got to bed.
Now we ask and answer questions about our sex life outside the bedroom which has enabled us to have the best sex in the bedroom in the 19 years of marriage.
Here are 19 questions you can ask to turn up the heat between your sheets right away.
17. Be Intentional Every Day
All the decisions we’ve made over the years have happened because we’ve been intentional.
We’ve communicated, set goals, and have taken action toward an extraordinary marriage daily.
Not every day is perfect or goes as planned and yet you learn, you live, and you love.
Look over the list again and pick one or two that resonate with you.
How could putting 1 or 2 of these to work in your marriage today change your marriage this year? How about over the next 5-10, or 20 years?
The marriage you’ve been praying for can start today.
Put one of these 17 tips into action.
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