Over my 30 years of marriage to Susan, I’ve found that there are many things that can push intimacy away from a marriage relationship. Busyness, stress, bitterness and a lack of forgiveness are just a few things that keep closeness from entering the home and the bedroom.
Being intimate comes naturally when you build your marriage on a few core values. There are 6 important things you must embrace to allow more intimacy in your marriage, to have the more intimate marriage you’ve always wanted.
No one likes a know-it-all. We may have a position of leadership and responsibility in the home but that doesn’t mean everyone else has to just salute and jump to it. Good leaders lead by example, not with loud voices. It’s one thing to be confident in your abilities and decision-making but that can easily become controlling. Humility acknowledges that you need other people, especially your spouse—and not just to do what you want them to. Humility recognizes other people have strengths and insights. It listens rather than lectures; and it gently asks questions to understand better. Humility seeks advice and counsel from others.
Have you ever noticed how the temperature changes when some people come into a room? It can either get really chilly or heat up pretty quickly without them even saying a word. You can read it in their face and their body language. What kind of effect do you have on the people around you? In situations of conflict or difficulty, do you bring a calming presence to your marriage? During tense moments, try to relax physically and mentally. Think of yourself as a thermostat that regulates the temperature in your home instead of a thermometer that merely reflects that temperature.
When conflicts arise, people are usually quick to take sides. Whether it’s a husband and wife disagreeing over their budget or a work team squabbling about responsibilities, they divide. The answer is to make the issue the opponent, not the other person, so that “we” come together to address a situation. It’s promoting the sense of team. Unity links hands and hearts.
Despite all our best efforts, there will be times when relationships are bruised, even broken. Misunderstanding, hurtful words, and anger can all damage a relationship. Times like these need someone who will lead the way and step into the gap to move towards repairing the breach. That might mean being the first to apologize and ask for forgiveness. Reconciliation reaches out to your spouse and other people. Reconciliation must be embraced for intimacy.
It’s easy to develop a consumer attitude towards relationships, and it happens often in marriages, too. What am I going to get out of this? This is especially true when we are very busy, as we get focused on what needs to be done rather than the people around us. Instead of being selfish, let’s strive to be selfless. Ask yourself, “What does my spouse/child need from me today?” Better yet, ask them directly. Generosity is giving without expecting anything in return. Giving extends a hand to other people.
You’ve probably been around people who are cold and play their cards very close to the vest. It’s not very enjoyable to be around a person like that. You don’t feel any connection with them and the relationship goes nowhere. Most people would rather be around someone who is warm and inviting and lays their cards on the table. This applies to the marriage relationship, too. Openness and honesty foster fast growing, close relationships.
Which one of these 6 things do you need to embrace to have a more intimate marriage? Please share your comments below.