Man proposing to a woman

1. Ask about what they like in the bedroom. We all have different thoughts and fantasies. What you may like, your spouse might not. You need to know what your spouse likes and dislikes. You need to have these conversations before you hop in the sack. Ask questions about what excites them, what turns them on, what they might find interesting to explore and what they wouldn't like at all. This will help increase the spice factor in your marriage.

2. Dream about your future together. One quick way to spice up your marriage is to dream about your future. Think about where you want to be next month, next year, in the next five years, In the next 20 years. If you plan on being in each others lives for the long haul - you should aim for things you want to do and achieve together. This will help keep you connected and give you a purpose in your relationship!

3. Brush your teeth. This one is purely practical. If you've got nasty morning breath (or evening breath, or after you eat garlic breath) - No one wants to be around that! It takes 30 seconds to brush your teeth! Take those 30 seconds and make your breath smell fabulous! Your spouse will appreciate it.

4. Make a dream list together. This is similar to dreaming about your future together. Find magazines with pictures of things that you want to do together - improvements to your home, places you want to go, things you want to see, things that you would love to do with your spouse. Make a scrapbook or a big poster of them. Put them somewhere where you can see them together - maybe in the master bathroom. Give your mind a visual picture of what you want to do and where you want to go in your marriage.

5. Catch them doing something well, then compliment. Everybody loves to be told they're doing something well, but we don't do this with our spouses enough. Often times, we just put them down and nag. Why don't you find something that they do well, notice it, and compliment them on it?

'Honey, I love the dinner that you made!' 'Honey, you are a great mom!' 'Boy I sure do love when you mow the yard!' 'When you take the trash out it just lights my fire!' Ok, maybe that last one is a bit far fetched.

6. Comment on how they look. When your wife gets a new haircut or a new dress, notice it, and make a nice comment. If your husband shaved or is wearing a suit, tell them how good he looks! Tell him what you like about the look and maybe even tell them what you would like to see him in next. The point is to engage with your spouse and the things that they are doing. Too often we operate in what seems like separate worlds - even when we are living under the same roof!

7. Flirt with each other publicly. Sometimes flirting completely vanishes after you've been married for a period of time. Take time to flirt with your spouse again. Learn how to flirt with your spouse! Leave little love notes. Tease him in public. Grab their backside. Put your hand on her knee. Hold hands. Smile. Kiss. Or, for the daring, take it to the next level! It's up to you to decide with your spouse.

8. Get a babysitter. Date nights are an important thing to a marriage. Keep them consistent and keep them often! It's important to have babysitters so you can pass off your children when you need to have a date with your spouse. Ideas for baby-sitters: The next-door neighbour teens. Swap date nights with another couple that has kids. Find groups that offer sitting services, like churches. Offer the service for other couples in your church - then swap. Your Parents or In-laws. Babysitters are important to keep the spice in your marriage!

9. Schedule sex. I'm not one who likes to schedule sex, but I know that if it's not on the calendar, It doesn't always happen. Good, consistent, scheduled sex is better than no sex at all! Put sex on the calendar so you can keep the physical part of your relationship alive!

10. Hold hands. Any type of physical touch is a good thing with your spouse. Holding hands is a great place to start.

11. Forgive easily and quickly. Holding a grudge with your spouse will do great damage to your marriage. Surprisingly, the main reason to forgive is not for your spouse. Forgiving is for you. If you hold onto something, it makes you upset and festers in your mind. Your spouse goes on with their life and doesn't even realize you're holding resentment. Learn how to forgive quickly and completely. You may not forget, but you do need to forgive.

12. Listen better. I've written about how to spice up your marriage by listening before. I'll say it again - We need to listen to our spouses! We need to pay attention when our spouse is speaking! Engage in the present moment and the conversation. It's a sign of respect and regard for your spouse. It shows them that you're interested and that they matter to you.

13. Don't keep secrets. Lots of couples hide things from each other. Three that come to mind are Money, Eating, and Sexual habits. If anything is hidden and your spouse finds out about it, it could be disastrous for your marriage. My philosophy is that you should be on the same team with your money. Incoming and outgoing - no secret accounts or hidden spending. Your spouse should know about your eating habits and decision-making. No sneaking to the fridge in the middle of the night! Talk to your spouse about what works for you with food - and what needs to not be in the house! Men tend to hide their sexual exploits - and in today's technology age, pornography is killing more and more marriages.

Tip 1 on this list is very important to your marriage. Make sure, if you aren't ready to talk about your sexual issues with your spouse, that you find a safe person to share with. Then at the appropriate time, you can talk with your spouse about it.

14. Pray together. If you can't take your marriage to God, what else have you got? Since God made everything and cares about you and your spouse, it would probably be a wise thing to pray about your marriage. I suggest starting with a prayer to change yourself, not your spouse. Perhaps, before you end the day together, take several minutes to lift up the good things from the day, and for your requests that need help from someone bigger than you!

15. Never bad mouth your spouse in public. Never say bad things about your spouse to your friends or in a public place. It's demeaning, and no person deserves that. Even if your spouse is frustrating you, you should keep your marital issues in your marriage and not out with your friends. If you have a problem with your spouse, talk to them first, then go to a counselor if it can't be resolved. So called 'friendly advice' quickly becomes gossip, or a "snip" session trying to "one up" each other about how bad they have it with their spouse. Who needs that!?
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