Relationship Tips For A Happy Marriage Part 8: Stop Being Predictable
The Old Adage Is True (well, kind of)
There’s an old saying in Hollywood I’m sure you’ve heard that goes something like this, “Be anything but boring.” The same is kind of true for marriage. A boring marriage puts your relationship at risk. One of the best relationship tips for a happy marriage I can give you is this: Don’t be predictable.
A Common Marriage Problem
In my work with marriages, one of the most common problems I hear from couples whose relationships are falling apart, is that their marriage is predictable – everything has become dull and boring.
What do you think happens when a marriage relationship becomes dull, boring and predictable? The spouses start searching for a little excitement – and sometimes they think they’re finding it in the arms of another person.
Be Predictable AND Unpredictable
A healthy marriage requires both predictability and unpredictability. I know it sounds like I’m contradicting myself so let me explain.
The Good Side of Predictability
You and your spouse need to know that you can count on each other by being responsible and following through on your agreements and expectations. This is the good side of predictability. Feeling uncertain about whether your spouse will follow through or behave in a certain way can cause just as much damage to your marriage as a spouse who is too predictable. Make sense?
So don’t think of being “predictable” as something that’s totally bad because it isn’t. Predictability can give a marriage the security, comfort and sense of certainty that it needs.
The Bad Side Of Predictability
Predictability harms a marriage when the partners are mindlessly going through the motions. Everyday is the same. There is no variety or surprise – no spark. We all enjoy the lazy river ride at the amusement park but we also want to go down Thunder River where there are rapids, dips, drops, spins and spraying water. Why? Because it adds a little bit of excitement to the experience!
An Idea: Disturb Your Spouse’s Predictability
Since most marriages struggle with too much predictability instead of too much unpredictability, I’ll give you some ideas about how to disturb your spouse’s routine of predictability:
1) If your spouse spends a few hours each weekend watching sports, maybe you could make a party out of it and join them– maybe invite some friends over.
2) If your spouse loves being outside tending their garden, then maybe you could buy a special plant for them – maybe even help take of it together.
3) Maybe instead of watching the evening news, invite your spouse to take a sunset stroll with you.
4) During your sunset stroll with your spouse, maybe stop and give them a hug – whisper I love you into their ear and kiss them softly on the lips, and then take their hand and keep walking.
Do The Unexpected
It doesn’t take much to spice up your marriage. Just keep this in mind: Every once-in-awhile, do the unexpected – be just a little bit unpredictable – because when you do, you start becoming mad about marriage again.