Dan wrote the men’s version (8 Ways To Be A Better Husband) a while back and we both thought it fitting to include a women’s edition. Marriage is a two-way street; each partner has a role to play and the load cannot be unequally yoked.
Implementing these strategies will go a long way in discipling up in your marriage and experiencing growth and happiness with your spouse. Men and women both need to strive to better themselves as spouses; it’s not one person’s job–it is both our jobs to commit to growth in marriage. Without further adieu, ladies here’s what you do.
1. Don’t Nag Your Husband.
Ladies, I think we are all guilty of this at some point. Our spouse is not just our equal, but in most instances he is the spiritual head of your household.
We do an immense disservice to our husband by belittling him whether it be publicly or privately. Finding fault with his methods, whether in parenting, handling a chore, or addressing a task you needed accomplished diminishes his confidence and intimacy with you.
Choose instead to praise him for his efforts-extort and emphasize how much his endeavor helps you. It is easy to get upset over your spouse doing something the “wrong” way when in fact we didn’t specify exactly what we wanted to happen!
Remember, men and women interpret information differently. Don’t get upset when you fail to tell your spouse precisely how you want or need something done.
2. Compliment Him Privately And Publicly.
My favorite thing to do is brag on my husband-I love to tell people how handsome, smart, funny, caring, considerate, and generally awesome he is! And this isn’t positional; your spouse has many different and wonderful qualities they need to know that you see and appreciate.
Backhanded compliments and snide comments about your spouse, in front of others and your husband, is a sure fire way to hurt him publicly and allow resentment to build up in his heart. Even if he has done something wrong or offended you, resolve to not say anything derogatory about your husband.
In public and private, tell your husband often how much you love him, how proud you are of him, and that he is an integral role in your family unit that can never be replaced.
3. Pray For Your Husband.
Ladies, men are raised in our society to not display emotion. In fact, it’s looked down upon for a man to show his feelings. This is reason enough alone to pray daily for your spouse. Ask the Lord to equip him with wisdom, mental fortitude, grace, understanding, and peace.
Pray for his well-being and pray that you can be used in a way to build him up further in the Lord. Believe and pray for his work life to be blessed, as most husbands are the breadwinners; full time jobs are hard mentally, physically, and even spiritually.
Not to disvalue women’s roles as homemakers, our husbands face different challenges and schemes of the devil. Our husbands need us to be prayerful wives.
4. Participate In His Hobbies–And Learn To Enjoy Them Too!
It’s easy to get upset when our spouse wants to use vacation time or downtime to focus on his hobbies. After all, we want to spend time with them too right? Instead of grumbling about his wanting to go hunt, shoot guns, or go camping, why not join him?
Last winter, I had the privilege of going with Dan on a hunting trip. Initially, I could have cared less about hunting-in fact I really didn’t understand his draw to it. So I decided to see what it was all about-come to find out it was incredible! The hiking out, the extreme cold, the stillness and solitude of God in nature…it finally clicked as to why he loved it so much.
Needless to say, I’ve bought my own bow and we are planning on several hunting trips together this year. Something I could have envied and misunderstood, became an activity we do TOGETHER as husband and wife.
He doesn’t have to make a choice between his passions and spending time with me, because I made an effort to take interest in the things that make him happy. There is nothing better than doing life together and supporting each other’s passions.
5. Dress Up For Your Man.
Ladies, remember the days of dating when we would pull out all the stops to get ready for our men? The hair, the make-up, the perfect outfit…we had it all planned out! Then…. complacency sets in.
Years go by and because we are so comfortable with our spouse, we can let ourselves forget what our appearance does for our man. Our guys LOVE looking at their gorgeous wives.
Does Dan love me whether I’m dressed to the nines or chilling in sweat pants? Of course. The man proposed to me when I had nappy hair and a bad case of pink eye-no fabulous makeup, outfit, or nice appearance to speak of!
But I know he loves it too when he sees me put on a cute summer dress and some eye shadow. Men are visual creatures; they love nothing more than to see their wives “turned up” for them. 😉 Even when we have added stress in our lives due to schedules, children, work, or lack of sleep, do not neglect to look good for your man for date night, or even just a random day of the week.
6. Have Sex Often!
Ladies, I can’t tell you how often women tell me it’s been “months or years” since they were last intimate with their spouse. Whoa! This is a recipe for infidelity to take place! Sex is a beautiful and incredible blessing in marriage-not only does it create intimacy, it bonds you closely with your spouse.
Additionally, do not be a wife who threatens to “not” have sex as punishment for whatever offense your spouse has incurred. Marriage is hard sometimes; often we hurt our spouses the most because they are the closest ones to us.
Don’t use sex as a weapon against your spouse, or hold it over their heads. Don’t let your job, your kids, or your state of being detract you from intimacy with your husband.
7. Speak His Love Language.
Understanding what’s most important to your spouse will help you become a better wife to your man. When we’ve been married for a while, we can get complacent in how we treat our spouse; we must study our spouse as we grow together to understand what makes them happy.
For me, words of affirmation are something that encourages me and makes me feel like a million bucks when Dan speaks to me. Communication is everything in marriage; we process and interpret information differently so it is vital to a successful marriage to learn their language and apply it daily!
(Get the Love Language book HERE.)
8. Don’t Confuse Him With Jesus.
This one I learned early on. Ladies, he might have seemed like that “white knight” we all have dreamed of: Tall, dark, handsome…can do no wrong!
But the truth is he is fallible; he may have been an angel on earth when you were dating, but sometimes we get glimpses of the “real” hubby now that you are man and wife! Why the disparaging difference?
When you get married, men feel like they can be real with you. They take down the armor, and sometimes they say and do stuff that can be hurtful, mean, or completely out of character. This is why you cannot put your husband on that “white horse.” He’s not perfect, and he never will be.
Don’t try to change him; allow the Lord living through you to work on him in God’s timeline and not yours. Don’t buy into the Hollywood movie perception of a “perfect man.” There was only one perfect man; Jesus. Save yourself the trouble of disappointment and also the trouble of your spouse feeling like they cannot measure up.
Marriage is made up of two fallen people; learn to love your husband no matter the wrong or inferred perception of his nature. As you continue to grow together in the Lord, you each will experience wisdom, patience, and understanding in resolving conflict and picking your battles.
The truth is, there is NO disagreement worth losing your marriage over-keep that in mind. Is this an exhaustive list? No way! Ladies continue to add nuances that are unique and special to your marriage and your husband to this list, and I can promise you that marriage will begin to look and feel like it was intended to by God.